I was writing an email early this morning and made a mistake. In the middle of typing a word I accidentally struck the Command+. keys (Apple+Period). To my surprise, Apple Mail displayed a drop down list of possible completions for the word I had half entered.
At first I thought the feature was a novel idea. But the more I considered it, the more I gained a genuine respect for what the feature represented. For someone in some way keyboard challenged, this could represent a very efficient way to enter text (at least the larger and more complicated words). For someone spelling impaired, the feature could be a powerful way to reference possible spellings without waiting for the spellcheck to call their bluff.
I’m actually not sure if this is a new feature in Mail 3.0, or if it was present in 2.0. Either way, I found it by mistake and thought it a feature worthy of sharing. Predictive text has revolutionized the way we send SMS message via cell phones. I doubt it will make such a big splash in the desktop space, but after toying with the feature for a few minutes I think it could be a welcome feature to many word processing applications.
If you’ve already installed Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard), give it a shot. If you’ve still got 10.4 running, post comment and let me know if the feature existed in Mail 2.0.
UPDATE: 11/8/07 8:07am
It looks like TextEdit 1.5 has the same functionality.