Of all the gestures Apple had available to them during the development of iOS, I have no idea why they felt that “shake vigorously” would best symbolize Undo. Scrolling and panning with a finger makes sense to me. Pinching to zoom makes sense to me. Shaking my iPhone in one hand like a maraca to […]
" />

Shake to Undo

shake to undo iphone

Of all the gestures Apple had available to them during the development of iOS, I have no idea why they felt that “shake vigorously” would best symbolize Undo. Scrolling and panning with a finger makes sense to me. Pinching to zoom makes sense to me. Shaking my iPhone in one hand like a maraca to undo what I’ve just typed (or erased) does not.

I’m really not sure what frame of mind Apple expects the user to be in when they shake-to-undo. Did they picture me getting so angry over a typo that I’d end up clenching my fists, allow my rage to cause my entire arm to quiver, and then suddenly delight as my iPhone offered me an option to “Undo Typing”?

Sarcasm aside, the shaking gesture itself just isn’t very well implemented. Most people I know type with two hands – one on either side of the phone, thumbs on the software keyboard. Shaking the iPhone with two hands with the screen facing you doesn’t work. Try it. Shake it forwards and back, like you’d expect to, and watch as absolutely nothing happens. Now shake the iPhone side-to-side with both hands and watch as the “Undo Typing” dialog pops up on screen…but try not to feel like a complete idiot while doing that.

I realize, of course, that this isn’t really the way the Shake is supposed to be invoked. It works perfectly when the iPhone is held in one hand, like a hammer, and rapped twice in the air, as if to finish off an imaginary nail. Then again, if you’re typing, why would you take one hand off of your device just to undo a mistake? Nothing about that seems clever or time-saving.

The sad result of this gesture’s implementation is that I barely ever bother to undo mistakes or poorly written sentences on my iPhone. I either correct them manually by selecting and erasing the offending text, or I simply let them be and pass it off like this: Look, it’s not *my fault*, it’s Apple’s. People are often annoyed when I say that, and sometimes I start to wonder if it’s really just a poor excuse on my part…but then I shake it off and get on with my day.

 

Continue reading:

TAGS: