Essay rich text editor for iPad adds some clever keyboard shortcuts
Essay, the only rich text editor on the iPad, has gotten a pretty big update. You may remember our first look at the app back in January, when we found it to be good-looking, easy to use and very nicely designed. It also lacked many external keyboard shortcuts, which made it all but useless for its intended purpose.
That problem has been fixed, in a rather clever way.
The reason there are so many plain text editors in the app store is because plain text support is built in to iOS. If you write an app, text-editing comes free. This is not so with rich text, which meant that the developer, Dirk Holtwick, had to do the hard work himself. Further, shortcuts like control-b for bold and control-i for italics don’t work in iOS, so Dirk had to come up with something else. Here’s how it works:
If you hit alt-space, a little box pops up waiting for your command. Hit “i” for italics, “b” for bold, “u” for underline and so on. You can also toggle full-screen mode, switch zoom levels and change to paragraph, header and block-quote text.
It works surprisingly well, and if you’re used to a desktop app launcher like Quicksilver or LaunchBar, then you’re halfway there already.
V1.2 of Essay also adds undo and redo support, and enables auto-correction. Auto-correction is nice, but undo is essential, especially when you just selected an entire paragraph and accidentally overtyped it.
The app still has the same Dropbox support, handles markdown, TXT and HTML files and uses gestures to control the interface, and costs the same $4. Check it out.
Essay 1.2 with Keyboard Shortcuts [Essay blog]
Essay: iPad Rich Text Editor Shows Promise, Needs Work
Elements for iPad, a Dropbox-Syncing Text Editor
PlainText: iPad Text-Editor from the Makers of WriteRoom
Fuente: Gadget Lab