BUG: text looks different but readout telling me it's the same

so i’m running into this issue where the text on-screen looks different - it’s a little bit thinner than the rest of the text but when i look at the font and size settings, they read as exactly the same. there is a distinction to be made but there’s no way for me to find out what that distinction is so that i can unify everything… is this a readout bug or a rendering bug.

examples below and i’m blurring out text not because it’s top secret but because it’s embarrassing… :slight_smile: note that the cursor is in two different places and those places are where the text looks different… but the readout panel tells me that everything is exactly the same.

also, as you can see in the screenshots, i installed a font called InputMono if that is relevant to the issue.



Hi, Jin. I’m sorry I have no help for your font problem – but as an aside, what IS that cool-looking third party keyboard you’re using there? :smiley:

That looks like a keyboard I liked from back in the Palm Pilot days. :slight_smile: It was quite efficient once you got used to it.

As for the font, my guess would be subtle variations in weight. Some fonts have medium, bold, black, semibold, semiblack, light, ultralight, etc.—but the front-end tools are simplified on iOS, only the base font name is printed, and medium will not trigger the “bold” button, for example. You should be able to normalise the text by selecting all of it and toggling bold on/off twice. If that doesn’t work, or moves you into the wrong variant (I have a font that drops to “Light” if I try and toggle from Regular with Medium mixed), then just go into the font selection menu and tap the i button alongside the font you are using, to select a specific variant.

hey silverdragon,

amberv’s right. it’s exactly the same keyboard that was out for palm pilots… but back in the day, you had to peel off a plastic sticker showing that new keyboard arrangement and paste it onto the area of the palm pilot reserved for graffiti.

it’s called MESSAGEASE and it’s totally free on the app store!

i go back to the handspring palm pilot clones and graffiti1 was my absolute FAVORITE text entry system for portable devices. imo, it’s still much better than the software keyboards we have now and their stupid DUCKING autocompletes!

but they don’t have graffiti1 for iOS devices and the graffiti1 implementation on my android phone is completely borked (too sensitive so that it’s impossible to do punctuation… a fallout for modern devices being so hires).

so in my desperation to get around autocomplete, i searched and searched and finally found messagease! i missed out on it during my handspring days because i didn’t want the hassle of the putting a sticker on my device and i liked graffiti1 but having discovered it now, i can say that it is AWESOME! for tablet and phone use, it’s actually BETTER than graffiti because while i like graffiti for writing, it’s not so great for just entering a URL or something… but messagease splits the difference really well.

i think by default, it comes with autocomplete turned on but that’s the very thing i was trying to get away from so i turned it off and i finally feel like i can write on a portable again. autocomplete always kinda felt like there was something between me and my words… and errors ended up making sentences completely indecipherable whereas with messagease, you just get regular typos.

anyway, i totally, highly recommend it! it takes a little while to get used to letter layout but the basic gag is that almost all desired characters can be accessed by either hitting the button or swiping in towards the center or out towards the edges on each key!

if you decide to try it, also recommend you look up tutorials online. they really help you get a grasp of the designer’s thinking in arranging things this way. oh and there’s a typing game that for it, that’s again, free, that helps teach you the keyboard.

it took me a couple of days to get over the intellectual hump and probably a couple of weeks to get fast… but now, i can type on it quite fast… certainly not as fast as touch typing but maybe half that speed?

hi amberv,

thanks for the info. yeah, i think you’re right… i toggled bold on the lighter text and i think it dropped me into “light” instead of just the standard.

hmmm… i think this should warrant a warning for people installing fonts.

but as it is, i think i’ll remove all the other variants so that scrivener won’t get confused.

thanks again!


oh and silverdragon,

if you’re interested and want to give it a go, i can post some photos of handwritten notes that i made about the design philosophy of the keyboard. kinda helped me get my head around it.


That’s it, MessagEase. I used that over Graffiti until I got a foldable keyboard for the Tungsten T (and that turned it into a fully capable portable writing device with the right software). I remember the little stickers too—simpler times. :slight_smile: I didn’t mind Graffiti either, but once I managed proficiency I found this an all around a better tool for jotting down notes. Either way, nearly everything is better than a squished down keyboard.

I’ll be giving this a try, but with the even larger “gesture” area, I think it will work well. One of the biggest problems with the Palm Pilot implementation was how small the Graffiti area was. All those directional swipes could sometimes be misinterpreted if you got sloppy.

As to the font matter, yeah it might be worth a footnote in the font FAQ. There are some very out of the way issues and bugs with odd weights in macOS as well. Sometimes Cmd-B triggers the wrong variant for example. It’s nice to have them available for some things, but you do have to be a little more careful around them I’ve found.

Well, thanks, folks! MessageEase . . . I’ll give it a try. I too go back to the days of Palm, but Graffiti always looked better than it worked, for me. I wore out two infrared keyboards writing in coffeehouses…

Of course I go so very far back that I can read the holes in unprinted punched cards… I started programming when I was two, yeah, that’s it… :stuck_out_tongue:

hey amberv,

yeah give it a try. if you used this before, i’m sure you’ll fall right back into it. and yeah, having a large, finger usable keyboard will probably feel very luxurious compared to the palm. it’s really configurable too so you can change the size of the keypad, can even change the font on the keys!


holy moly really? since you were 2?! amazing! were your parents involved in defense, banking or universities? can’t imagine gigantic punch card reading computers were very common at the time. … hmmm… there’s no “bow down” emoji here but “bow down emoji” :slight_smile: .


Well, ok, I was 16 and I corrected my math teacher’s programs. In FORTRAN. in 1969. Do the math… :blush:

And no, my parents were humble retail clerks. It was an enrichment program in my high school subsidized by the town oil baron in Oklahoma.

There was no place in Enid, Oklahoma for a kid who could correct her math teacher’s work and get straight A’s while being completely unable to pay attention in class, so of course I ended up in South California… :wink:

Edit: And yes, I really could read the holes in punched cards. I had to. Bows accepted.

hey silverdragon,

hah! fortran. nice. still in use and some still swear by it. but yeah, was curious what language you were programming. very neat.

oh and in case you were interested, here are my personal cheat sheets that i made to help me get started on messagease.


p.s. you can move cursor one character at a time by swiping on the spacebar and if you swipe back and forth, you’ll move one word at a time. there’s a lot of functionality to go through in the docs too… luck.

I’ve already downloaded it and given it a try. I’m impressed; it does all the things that I liked Nintype for, and none of the things I disliked Nintype for :slight_smile: It will take a bit of practice, but then so did Nintype, Swype, or for that matter typing in general.