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.)


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.

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!”