Why is iPhone auto-correct this dumb?

There are several layers to the “dumb” here. I’m not sure how it’s even possible to have missed this, with any algorithm. Like “loops”, k is right next to o; but only “looks” even matches the part of speech. And lotos??

I mention this because it’s not an isolated example. It’s just the first time I had the energy and a decent screen shot to share.

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Autocorrect really does duck up sometimes. A friend of my had a dog named Tootsie, Toots for short, and you don’t want to know what it did to “Toots”.

Nothing wrong with “loops” or “loots” as verbs to parallel “looks”; they just aren’t commonly used in that phrasing.

My family’s dog owes her name to Apple’s autocorrect. She’s a Zuchon (bichon frisé / shitzu cross), which when I first entered it was “corrected” to Zucchini (not a word in common use on this side of the Atlantic, but anyway). So she’s called Zuki. (It’s better than my wife’s original idea, which was Barbara: imagine shouting that across a park.)

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I think a lot of the problem with autocorrect is that users don’t know how to train it to their own style . When you receive a suggested correction that’s not what you want, reject it by tapping the first option – the one that’s literally what you typed – to tell the system that your entry was intentional.

That said, in the recent past, Apple has reportedly begun aggregating machine learning autocorrect data from other’s input. And, well, there are a lot of stupid people among the userbase which seems to result in “corrections” that are actually wrong. This saddens me.

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Good point, and I have suspected user-specific “training” as one factor here.

This reminds me of a related issue that I wanted to include here. It bugs me that I can’t remember the word now, but there’s a very common 3-letter word that I always type wrong as a non-word. Auto-correct should fix it for me automatically, and it doesn’t. But worse, the correct word isn’t even presented as an option. This has led me to believe that the correct word has somehow been blacklisted in my private dictionary. So I have to fight my iPhone to type the correct spelling, let alone not benefitting from iPhone fixing things for me. And I’m not sure, but I wonder if sometimes it “fixes” my correct spelling to the wrong thing because of the actual word being blacklisted. I’ll try to see if I can recreate a test once I remember the word…

And so a year or so back, I tried to Google how to get access to this private dictionary / blacklist on my iPhone that is cursing me, and I have not been able to find out how to edit it. Does anyone know if there’s a way?? (Typing in the correct word obviously does not appear to remove the same word from the blacklist).

Not that I disagree with your statement, auto-correct should fix that, but there is a workaround.

iOS: Settings > General > Keyboard > Text Replacement
Mac: Settings > Keyboard > Text Replacements… (odd the different wording here)

I have the same issue when ending an email where my “Best,” always ends up being typed as “Bets,”. This little fix did the trick. :slight_smile:

Thanks so much. Yea, I know I can essentially replace what I’m trying to type (or what I mistype) with the correct thing using this trick. But call me stubborn, I want the g-d software to work correctly and raise awareness if it doesn’t :sweat_smile: I probably should work as a UX Engineer at Apple.

But I might cave and do the Text Replacement :innocent: I’m not sure how many it’s gonna be tho…

I’m incredulous.

“Yep, Apple! She’s apparently out on the town with her favorite fern leaf!”

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iOS 17 was supposed to be much better in this department. Sadly, I’m still dealing with stupid stuff like this:

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I just wish autocorrect wouldn’t automatically select the entire word when you want to place the cursor. Liking the huge magnifying loupe.

Entering ‘quick look’, it is replaced by the capitalised ‘Quick Look’. Disabling autocorrect has no effect. Typing space and backspace only offer to correct ‘Look’. The only way I’ve found to fix that is to enter some more text and only then move the cursor to both Q & L and replace them with lower case q and l. Anyone has found either a way to disable this behaviour (the only I could find is to also disable swiping which I find useful) or to easily edit autocorrection of two words?

Apple knows that when you type these two words together, you couldn’t possibly be referring to anything other than their Finder preview feature, of course! :sweat_smile:

Very annoying.

It’s not so much the correction I mind, it’s that there’s no easy way to correct a wrong autocorrect that affects two words (and that disabling autocorrect doesn’t stop that behaviour).

Two not very good workarounds:

  • Ensure there’s a different character than one space between the two words, either another character or two spaces, then one has to just remove this extra space or edit this wrong character instead of having to deal with two characters.

  • Creating a text replacement and remembering to use that instead of typing the two words.

I really like the press and hold spacebar to move the cursor as on a trackpad thing they introduced with iOS 12 (?). And I use it a lot too. But that you in iOS 17 now essentially cannot drop the cursor anywhere at all and only end up selecting entire words is really a bit grating to me.

Yea, it would be more efficient to restrict cursor drop locations to spaces between words rather than within words. But that requires that the replacement word options are rock solid choices. But as we see in this thread, they may have gone from bad to worse.

One of my rules for my developers is that I better not find a bug within 30s of QA. This feature almost NEVER gets things right, and fails the test. I’m appalled.