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Root Froyo/GB text selector thingamabob?

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by erisuser1, Feb 21, 2011.

  1. erisuser1

    erisuser1 Android Expert
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    OK, I'll admit it - I can't seem to get good at operating the GB text selector.

    I vaguely remember seeing a tutorial (it might have been in those welcome/intro screens during device setup), but of course I just skipped that.

    Anybody have a URL to some docs or maybe a useful video tutorial?

    While we're on topic, does everybody else have trouble with it? I use the HTC_ime_mod keyboard, which is a bit bigger than the stock Froyo or GB keyboards... so I'm wondering if my troubles using it are due to the "cramped" remaining space the text edit window has.

    Comments, suggestions?
     

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  2. doogald

    doogald Android Expert
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    Hmmm, well, honestly, I've liked this a million time better than cupcake/eclair/froyo. But, there's this, with a text description:

    Android 2.3 Platform Highlights | Android Developers


    For me, simply tapping in the text area puts a single cursor thingy pretty darned close to where I tapped, and you can tap and drag that to wherever you want the cursor to be (better than iOS's method, IMHO). Tapping and holding on a word in the text area instead, and choosing "select word" from the popup, will select the word where you tapped and held almost always, with two selection bounds on the left and right, which you can tap/hold and drag to move if you want to extend the selection.

    I don't use HTC_IME myself - so far I've been lazily staying with the default GB keyboard, though I have Swiftkey and HTC_IME installed - but it's working for me.
     
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  3. erisuser1

    erisuser1 Android Expert
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    Thanks for the suggestions.

    What I'm experiencing might be due to my choice of keyboard, but I need to do some more testing. My primary frustrations with it usually arise in the following situation:

    I am trying to respond by quoting (on a bulletin board) a long post, but I want to redact everything but a few lines or a paragraph ... so the "word select" that I want to do involves big blocks of text, and there is a need to pan the text window to to move the other end of the selector so I can delete a whole bunch in one go.

    This seems to work acceptably with the GB Android (stock) keyboard, but it's screwy when I use HTC_ime_mod. Perversely, the GB keyboard occupies slightly more screen real-estate than HTC_ime_mod, but when I drag the right-selector down, it scrolls correctly with the GB keyboard, and sort of erratically with HTC_ime_mod keyboard - either that or the selectors disappear.

    I will fool with it a bit more to make sure this isn't a "protein programming" problem - I got in the habit of using portrait mode keying (because of past use of T9), and the stock GB keyboard has "chicklet keys" in portrait (I have fat fingers). Time for some retraining, I guess.
     
  4. jpzsports

    jpzsports Well-Known Member
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    Is there any way to enable it so that double taping a word, highlights it?
     
  5. doogald

    doogald Android Expert
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    I just tried HTC_IME and got a FC on the keyboard, so I'll have to work on that one.

    I did try it with Swiftkey and it worked pretty well with that. Unfortunately, that has no compact qwerty mode.
     
  6. erisuser1

    erisuser1 Android Expert
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    I haven't explored it a great deal, but I think there are version sensitivity problems with HTC_ime_mod on the Eris - I have been using a pretty old one - the apk is titled "HTC_IME_lo22.apk", and I believe it was from a .zip file named "htc_ime_lowres22_experimental.zip" (which can't be found any longer in jonasl's post on XDA). I'm pretty sure I got it from that thread, and tested both the v22 version and the v27 version, and the v22(experimental?) worked, but v27 did not.

    That was quite a long time ago - when all the dev ROMs were Eclair (2.1). I never stopped using that version because it seemed to work without FCs for every ROM I installed it on - Eclair, Froyo, Gingerbread. No bugs afaik, so I saw no reason to ever investigate any other versions from v23-v26.

    I'm trying to get used to the stock GB keyboard - panning of the text inside the text entry box using the "word select" cursors seems to behave better. Maybe I'll get used to it, but I can tell there are already some things about text editing on the Eris that are not going to get better:

    - tap the screen to try to move the cursor to a location which is near the left side of the screen; the cursor inserts (somewhere?) and the screen immediately pans to center the text so the cursor disappears, and you don't really know where it was placed. Pan the window back to the left, and oh, OK - there's the cursor... but it's no longer active (because of the pan operation) and now I need to tap the screen again. Repeat until insane.

    - try and insert the cursor at the end of the very last line - the place where you would usually want to go when you want to add some more text. Nearly impossible. My workaround is to always start any editing by adding a whole bunch of blank lines to begin with, and then "tap" a couple of lines back from the end to begin editing. This also helps with trying to move word-select cursors towards the bottom of the screen. Nearly impossible if there are no extra lines below where you are trying to finish the select.
     
  7. doogald

    doogald Android Expert
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    I suppose that it depends on the app you are using, but when I start dragging the cursor insertion point or the text selection bounds the editing window will pan as I drag those to the window bounds. I tend to enter text only in gmail, messaging and tweetdeck, and so far I've only edited in tweetdeck, and it worked well.

    I still have to get HTC_IME running. I tried to restore that and clicker from backups (rather than installing from scratch) so I am sure that one of those was messed up. I'll try again as soon as I get back to a real computer...
     
  8. SirEagle

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    Where do you get the HTC_IME keyboard?
     
  9. doogald

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  10. erisuser1

    erisuser1 Android Expert
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    Well, I went back and tried installing v23, v24, v25, and v27 ("lores" versions of each) onto GSB v1.6, and every one of them FC'ed before they even appeared on the screen - when trying to bring them up from the browser. (Perversely, I tried bringing up the "Clicker.apk" app ( = "Keyboard Calibration" ) on one of the installs, and that worked just fine - but try to get it to launch from the "Input method" selector, and it would FC)

    If I had been more motivated, I would have captured some logcats to see what was going on.

    So, I poked around on the Internet, to see if I could find any references to the file named

    "htc_ime_lowres22_experimental.zip"

    This is the one that I have been successfully using. I found a two references to it on a Cyanogen forum, and then also found this post on XDA. This one appears to be flashable; I unpacked it and cross-checked the MD5 sigs against the .apks that I have been using, and they matched. (Strangely, though, the original ".zip" file that I had was not a flashable zip, and had some additional files in it (for MacOS/X?) and some README.txt files)

    In particular, the README.txt file had this note in it:
    Code (Text):
    1.  
    2. Experimental modification for FroYo 2.2 Voice Input by exiva. Tested on CyanogenMod 6.0-RC2. Full credit to jonasl.
    3.  
    4. If you'd like to build the source on your own, replace the voice folder from hi22/com/htc/android/htcime to lo/com/htc/android/htcime. Build as normal.
    5.  
    6. HTC_IME mod by jonasl
    7. Details, instruction, donations and new versions:
    8. http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?p=5475283
    9. Credits to modaco for the original apk
    10.  
    So, the "22" here means "for Android 2.2 = Froyo", not "v22". I guess that means that I don't know which version of the jonasl HTC_ime_mod keyboard it is derived from. (Arrrgh).


    In any event, here's the MD5s for both of the .apks:

    e9fc92da2bc9f83bdc3f486f3078f0b9 ./Clicker.apk
    9dbf3eae26814556464d68fc5ddb6fda ./HTC_IME_lo22.apk

    You can either flash the .zip in the linked XDA post above, or unpack it an manually install the .apks by hand. jonasl's instructions seemed to indicate that you should install "Clicker.apk" first.

    cheers - sorry I couldn't figure out where I got this from.

    eu1


    .
     
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  11. doogald

    doogald Android Expert
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    Right, after posting the above, I tried to directly install the Jonas HTC_IME from xda and had the same result - not a FC on install, but the first time that you try to bring up the keyboard.

    I do prefer Swiftkey anyway, but sometimes I like the HTC_IME because it takes less screen space.

    I'll try to install yours. Thanks.
     
  12. SirEagle

    SirEagle Android Enthusiast
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    Tried the "htc_ime_lowres22_experimental.zip" that eu1 linked to. Installed fine but on first use it force closed and got constant force close message until I deleted the keyboard.
     
  13. erisuser1

    erisuser1 Android Expert
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    On which ROM?
     
  14. SirEagle

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  15. erisuser1

    erisuser1 Android Expert
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    Hmmm.. I have only been installing the .apk files manually - long pressing them in ES File Manager.

    Installing them that way drops them into /data/app, rather than /system/app.
    I honestly don't know why that would make it behave differently, though. But that is the only thing different between what you did and what I have been doing .
     
  16. doogald

    doogald Android Expert
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    Yes, I unzipped it in Astro and manually installed HTC_IME from there (clicker is the same version.) By the way, Astro listed the version as v26.

    It does not FC. However, one thing I noticed with Swiftkey is that the cursor insertion grabber is come and go. Swiftkey is designed to recognize and act on words, so when you click within a word (for example, I needed to change "it" to "I" - somehow an extra 't' slipped in) it will try to alter the word and not allow you to drag that insertion point. In fact, when I did try to drag the location, it changed the word to "ti". However, you can still long-press and select word and use those controls.

    I think that the keyboard makers may have to alter some of their code to support this new feature in Gingerbread completely.
     

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