how to get rid of the input bar?

I don't know what that thing is called, but since it's the same as the "quick input bar" only full-sized, I'm calling it the input bar. I absolutely will never use it because I can only input pinyin or English, and because I use OCR only on special occasions so that I don't need to have an icon for it persistently in front of me. I just only ever leave the keyboard selected on the input bar. The problem is that this input bar, which pops up in the main interface only when you click in the text box, takes up a lot of space. When the keyboard pops up, I really don't want that input bar there because it's never needed. In portrait mode, my Galaxy Note is big enough that I can easily leave the keyboard up as I scroll through entries, but if I could get rid of that input bar it would give me an additional 30% of space devoted to the kind of information for which I use the dictionary. In landscape mode, now that we can control the word list width to definition width, eliminating the input bar would make the definition window high enough to be useful while the keyboard's popped up.

If there's a way to suppress the input bar, I haven't found it. I've been through Settings>Dictionary>Main screen interface and Settings>Dictionary>Definition screen interface. Is there some way to get rid of the input bar so that I can use the space to read dictionary entries?

I'm on the latest beta. As I recall, the same annoyance was there in the last version, but the buttons had words instead of icons.
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
JimmyTheSaint said:
If there's a way to suppress the input bar, I haven't found it. I've been through Settings>Dictionary>Main screen interface and Settings>Dictionary>Definition screen interface. Is there some way to get rid of the input bar so that I can use the space to read dictionary entries?

I'm on the latest beta. As I recall, the same annoyance was there in the last version, but the buttons had words instead of icons.
There isn't a way to get rid of it at the moment, but we could certainly add one. There hasn't actually been much demand for this: our iOS app works exactly the same way and has been working that way for 2 years, and in all that time you're the first person on iOS or Android to request that we add an option to get rid of the input bar. But other people might use it if they had the chance (especially if they have a hardware keyboard or a third-party IME they like) so it's probably still worth doing.
 
mikelove said:
There isn't a way to get rid of it at the moment, but we could certainly add one. There hasn't actually been much demand for this: our iOS app works exactly the same way and has been working that way for 2 years, and in all that time you're the first person on iOS or Android to request that we add an option to get rid of the input bar.
This consideration is only relevant in "Two-panel in portrait" mode, right? Well, I get different behavior on my Galaxy S2 than on my Galaxy Note. On the S2, when the keyboard pops up in two-panel, you lose the definition panel and only have the word list panel (with the input bar at the top). So I never used two-panel mode on my S2. Two-panel mode becomes much more useful on my Galaxy Note. I presume due to the Note's extended real estate, Pleco doesn't close the definition panel when the keyboard is open in two-panel mode. Because of the Note's larger size, I can continue to explore dictionary hits no problem in two-panel mode while the keyboard is open. This is a newly discovered convenience, but the never-used input bar prevents the definition panel from being 30% longer. Getting rid of it would desirably enhance usability. I beg of you, provide an option to suppress the input bar. I mean, I have never, not once, not a single time, touched a button on the input bar. I mostly use Pleco in the field, in real-time linguistic situations. When talking to people, I will never want to save one keystroke to get to OCR, or switch to voice search, or bring up the Hanzi that appear under that puzzle piece because I only ever use pinyin.

I don't know why no one else has ever found this input bar obtrusive. Maybe it's because phablet users are still very few, and because if you're using a full-size tablet, you're not on the go in live linguistic situations, or you have so much screen real estate it just doesn't matter. As you explained in another thread, some people are fanatical enough about saving one keystroke to want an input bar available all the time. It might be worth querying how many people simply have never once even touched that input bar. But to the category of pinyin-only input, real-time users, the input bar is totally useless. Perhaps that category is more than just me.
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
JimmyTheSaint said:
I don't know why no one else has ever found this input bar obtrusive. Maybe it's because phablet users are still very few, and because if you're using a full-size tablet, you're not on the go in live linguistic situations, or you have so much screen real estate it just doesn't matter. As you explained in another thread, some people are fanatical enough about saving one keystroke to want an input bar available all the time. It might be worth querying how many people simply have never once even touched that input bar. But to the category of pinyin-only input, real-time users, the input bar is totally useless. Perhaps that category is more than just me.
OK, we'll see about adding it in the next beta. The form factor point is well-taken - on smartphone-size devices you're probably going to want to exit input to do things anyway, and full-size Android tablets are generally used in landscape mode where the input bar doesn't actually take up any space (we just shrink the search field and tack it onto the right side), so it's mainly just an issue on mini-tablets.

It's actually not just a keystroke-saving thing, though, it's also about discoverability of features and in particular of handwriting input - for some reason people seem to have a very hard time figuring out how to activate handwriting input in Pleco, and having lots of convenient buttons around makes it a bit more likely that they'll find it. Sacrificing ergonomics for user-friendliness is sadly a lot more important than it used to be in the old Palm/WM days...
 
Just a short point... I've only been using my tablet in portrait mode. It's easier to hold, and seems more natural (more like a book), and since that's how I also read texts....
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
stephanhodges said:
Just a short point... I've only been using my tablet in portrait mode. It's easier to hold, and seems more natural (more like a book), and since that's how I also read texts....
Fair enough, but landscape is definitely the dominant usage pattern - I don't think I've ever seen a 10" Android tablet "in the field" being used in portrait mode, the aspect ratio of the screen makes it generally seem less appealing than a portrait-mode iPad.
 
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