Practicing with tech (hardware, apps, and features)

This thread began as a topic about how annoyed I am at copying and pasting on iOS.

Then, thanks to Discourse’s handy “Your topic is similar to…” suggestions, I found a thread from almost a year ago where someone who looks just like me started such a discussion.

The solution, as per me, was to wait after copying. Apparently my experience had improved when I learned to wait.

Apparently, in the intervening months, I must have become impatient again and forgot about this “technique.”

My new dad brain aside, this made me reflect on how we practice using our tech.

So, the question I want to ask:

What tech/apps/features have you found you’ve needed to practice using?

What did you think was frustrating/difficult/useless, but then became essential as you got better at using it?

Another example for me: iOS’s text gestures. Damn, the three-finger-swipe-in, three-finger-double-swipe-in, and three-finger-swipe-out for copy/cut and paste have been tough to get right. But the more I use them, the better I get at doing it, and the faster I am at interacting with text on mobile. Same goes for double-tap to select a word, triple-tap to select a paragraph.

(Edit: improvements to skimmability, hopefully)

Anything beyond the basic system clipboard. In theory, I understood the value of multiple clipboards, filters, etc., but I didn’t trust that having to learn anything more complex than Command-V would be worth the time and effort required.

Even though I already had Keyboard Maestro and Launchbar and had tried occasionally to figure out how to use them for that kind of functionality, I decided to get Pastebot and commit myself to learning and using it. I did, and while I’m not quite ready to call it essential, the habit has begun to stick. When I need those features, I’m really glad that I figured out how to use them.

I believe I’ll eventually drop Pastebot and force myself to use Keyboard Maestro for this, but the act of buying the dedicated app and making myself get value out of it was the mental trick I had to play on myself to get over that particular hump.

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Swipe/Glide typing on iPhone. Still need practice tho. But it seems much faster than my usual fingertip taps.

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Daily project reviews. David mentioned he does this on a recent episode, or maybe his OF Show episode. I’d never considered daily, but I realized he has the right idea to break up that job, and OF makes it so easy to do a few at a time—in theory. In practice, it’s taking me some time to remember to work it into my day. The habit will ultimately prevail once I get a streak going and get have a few straight weeks where very little in the review is surprising or frustrating because I’ve recently touched everything.

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I would assume that touch typing on a physical keyboard qualifies in this category but I am yet to completely re-wire my brain to forget my old self-taught typing style, so I cannot attest to the benefits yet but I glimpse them from time to time.

Also text selection with IOS cursor from the virtual keyboard (long-pressing the space bat on the virtual keyboard and then adding another finger to start selecting by moving either one )

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