Editorial App for iOS: an App for Writing on iPad
We typically think of tablet computers as good for consuming, not producing, media. The iPad is great for ebooks and videos. But with its ungainly touchscreen keyboard, it’s not so useful for writing. Few students would enjoy typing their homework on an iPad.
Now there’s an application called Editorial that may change how people write on the iPad. Editorial is the brainchild of Ole Zorn, who has an eye for design and a willingness to test the boundaries of what iOS can do.
The interface is excellent. To the left is a sidebar for viewing local files and Dropbox synced files. Tapping the left arrow on the upper right gives you access to the browser and a Markdown previewer. The keyboard also comes with an extra bar along the top for accessing snippets, an undo button, and common Markdown characters. Best of all, you can customize the interface by choosing a light or dark theme, font families, font sizes, line spacing, and text width. It also displays a running word count in the upper right – a crucial tool for students who need to pass a minimum word limit for an assignment.
Rather than the traditional cut-copy-paste, Editorial supports snippets that pop in custom text whenever you want to call it up. It also gives you a completion bubble that appears when you begin to type a snippet, which allows you to complete a snippet with a single touch.
The Editorial app stores files either locally to your iPad or by synching with Dropbox. Sync happens automatically, and it’s very fast. Use your Dropbox menu to sort files by date and title. Dropbox is great because it allows you to compare different versions of the same document. You can restore a document to a previous version, or even restore segments of text.
There are many more features that I haven’t mentioned, including Editorial for the iPhone. And more features will be added soon. If you need a highly mobile writing tool, give Editorial a try!
Written by Michael Mussman
Michael is Editor of Forward Thinking, the Ashford University blog.