Today’s Rant: Do NOT Correct Me, TwAppGoogleSoftBook


I finally figured out how to disable the universal autocorrect. You open System Preferences, go to Language & Text, click on the “Text” menu, and there’s a box which you can uncheck which says “Correct spelling automatically.”

Here ya go:

AutoCorrect pic

See, this is why I love Apple. No other product gives me that sense of satisfaction and well-being that comes from figuring out how to make it stop annoying the hell out of me.

You are hereby absolved from reading the rest of this post. All is well.


I do not update my technology very often, not because I’m a Luddite, but because I find every new incarnation of a device or app I use contains some horrible new “improvement” which invades my privacy or does something I don’t want or no longer functions as it once did. But as you all know, last week my creaky old MacBook went kaput and I had to buy a new one.

This one is about three generations more advanced than my old one. Instead of being gently lulled into that Brave New World with successive OS tweaks and software fixes, I’ve had to leap headlong into the modern era, and it’s like jumping into a pool of cold water. This laptop has a click pad which inexplicably makes things bigger if I rest my hand on it the wrong way. Also, as I’ve mentioned, WordPress no longer gives me a scroll bar to select “categories” and “tags.” That’s not so bad for tags, since you can just type them in, but for categories you really need to be able to scroll down the list. Inexplicably, the scroll bar appeared maybe twice? I don’t know what made that happen, but regardless, I can’t seem to repeat that scenario. Yes, FYWP.

But by far the worst “improvement” is the universal autocorrect, which I have yet to figure out how to disable. In the new Macs universal autocorrect will correct your typos as you type, regardless of what application you are in. Whether I’m on WordPress, Twitter, Facebook, Pages, Scrivener, mail, or commenting on someone’s blog, my Mac will autocorrect me as I type along.

While this may sound like a good thing on paper, in reality it is the most evil fucking thing ever invented. I type really fast and I do make mistakes but I also 99.99% of the time correct them, because under the old system a typo was very obvious. Now my Mac corrects me as I go along, based on what it thinks I meant to say, and the misspelled word is no longer underlined so I haven’t even realized I’ve made a typo. Sadly, more often than not it picks the wrong fucking word. So, for example, last night I sent an email to someone and used the word “reply” but universal autocorrect changed it to “replay,” something I only noticed when my correspondent replied back to me. I look like an idiot.

Even worse, I use a lot of different language in my writing, neologisms and expressions like “whaaaaa!” or maybe even a French or Spanish word or two. When I’m writing fiction I write dialogue, and that means things like “Whi-” (stage direction: interruption). And no, MacBook, that was not meant to be “whig.” Thanks for caring, though.

People, I would much rather have an obvious typo in my copy than the wrong fucking word. Dear God but this is awful. I now look like an illiterate asshole, not an asshole who can’t type.

The absolute last thing anyone wants is their computer telling them what it thinks they meant to say. Make it stop. Please.


Filed under rants, technology

19 responses to “Today’s Rant: Do NOT Correct Me, TwAppGoogleSoftBook

  1. Joseph Stans

    How you will use your computer is determined by some geek in Cupertino. Do not try to subvert his wisdom or bad things will happen.

  2. Cervantes

    Never mind geeks in Cupertino, can’t you just turn off “Correct spelling automatically” in System Preferences > Language & Text > Text ?

    • Yes system preferences was the first place I looked. It’s not there.

      Terminal app, eeek.

      • Cervantes

        What OS version are you running? Have you looked for help here?

      • Joseph Stans

        No system preferences on an Apple. You care able to change some of the dangly bits like screensaver, etc. But NOBODY messes with the “System”. Because, you know it’s “the System” and represents the core of Apple philosophy. “We may or may not allow you do to useful things and we may or may not allow an alternative which will involve multiple special function keys that we will keep secret.” Welcome to the magic world of the Apple Appliance.

  3. It’s under the Edit Menu, and it’s grayed out.

    Which means it probably has to be gotten at through the Terminal.

    obBugsBunny (to Safari): You realize this means war?

  4. Mnemosyne

    I don’t mind autocorrect on the iPhone because the tiny keys mean that I mistype pretty often, but I HATE HATE HATE autocorrect on my desktop and laptop.

    For some reason, the mobile iOS seems to learn some of the specific words that I “misspell” (like “amirite?”) but the desktop and laptop insist that they know I really meant to type “emirate” and refuse to learn otherwise. Did they hire some Microsoft Word engineers or something?

    • Joseph Stans

      If they would have hired Miocrosoft engineers, the feature would work flawlessly but require three security updates every month.

  5. Late and off topic but just in case…Just bought a new Macbook. The Cupertino Overlord slowly reeling me in. I also have an iPhone. Nevertheless I asked several acquaintences about virus/malware protection and they responded to the effect “There’s not much of that stuff written for Apple products.” Any suggestions from the hostess or readers. Mucho Gracious.

    • It’s true there’s not much malware written for Apple OS, we’re still only, what, 6% of the market? And there is good malware/virus protection built into the architecture of OS X. I guess no system is completely safe? But I’ve never bought add-on antivirus software for my Mac and I’ve never, ever had a problem. Mr. Beale has a PC and was running into virus issues all the dang time and he doesn’t surf the net as much as I do.

      Here’s some info on how to encrypt your files, you can set the level of security on your system.

      • Joseph Stans

        If a virus or malware is defiend as any program that interferes with the operation of your computer and is potentially dangerous for your data than the only threat out there is the MAC OS. The latest switch form Tree Sloth to Snow Weasel is classic.

  6. Bernard

    i hate Apple updates, period. i have so much trouble figuring how things work, and then they change them. aren’t enough curse words in all the languages existing to curse them out with.

    like now i can’t change the sound/volume on my computer. the sound is frozen in the max state and drives me crazy, i’m deaf enough as it is. the volumne only makes the noise louder. lol

    • Bernard:

      If you’re in TN (or most any southrun state, there is a “fix” for your problem. Take your box to a friend’s house, one who has lotza gunz lying about his crib. Tell him that you want to scare the gremlins outta your ‘puter and that he should point his unloaded Mic9 at the screen and say, “Out, dammit, outta the box or I’ll blow you outta your tiny, electrodigital sox!”. If that doesn’ have the desired effect, tell him to then do it again, with his UNLOADED, weppin–but, this time, pull the trigger at the end of the incantation. I guarantee that his unloaded gun has a 50% of being loaded and THAT will solve your problem*.

      * Disclaimer: You WILL prolly need a new ‘puter.