Imagine for a moment that you know better than your computer, and your keystrokes flow directly from your intent. Or that natural-language models seem to have gone backwards in the decade since machine learning replaced the intelligently-written programs under the hood of many computer text interfaces, and you prefer not to allow the new model to intercede constantly. Or that you handle a lot of text with jargon, and you don’t enjoy your computer interrupting you like a bored child to ask: “what’s this word?” “that’s not a real word” “nuh uh”.
Well, you can live that dream.
When I replaced my faithful MacBook recently, I realised that I’d spent seven years gradually turning off autocomplete in almost every place it was enabled, and suddenly had to do it all in one go. Here are some notes on how to take back control.
Open System Preferences. Go to
Text and untick:
Correct spelling automatically
Capitalise words automatically
Touch Bar typing suggestions(this is important as it protects you from iOS-style
Use smart quotes and dashes is quite nice and mostly harmless, though.
This presumably applies to other JetBrains products like IntelliJ IDEA too.
Open Settings (
Proofreading and untick the bold header.
Most notably, this will protect you from “typos” in your code or strings that are acronyms.
Word on macOS seems to keep this in two different places.
Open the Preferences pane (
⌘+,), and then:
Automatically correct spelling and formatting as you type.
Spelling & Grammar, and untick:
Always suggest corrections
Check spelling as you type
Flag repeated words
Frequently confused words
- Look to the bottom of the pane, and untick:
Check grammar as you type
Check grammar with spelling
AutoCorrect and untick:
Capitalise names of days
Correct TWo INitial CApitals
Capitalise first letter of sentences
Replace text as you type
While you’re here, why not kick back and enjoy reading some pedantic group’s list of auto replacements deployed to millions of computers worldwide, including
driveing, the missing
eclair, removing the apostrophe-e in
you're own, and fixing
you;d (these ones I can kinda support).
Check spelling: Never.
It also has “When I click Send”, which is a cool idea if you’re into that.
Open Preferences (
Language & region >
Enable spellcheck on your messages.