Writing Blocks
November 19, 2013 11:27 AM   Subscribe

Writing Blocks
A text drafting tool so minimalist that the words you're writing are invisible

I often hate the things that I write while I'm writing them. That's why I made this thing, a web text editor that replaces each word you type with a block of light. Use it, as I do, for times when you want or need to write but aren't in the mood to be reminded of how terrible you are every time you look at the screen. If you're not as full of constant self-hatred as I am, it's also great for banging out a rough draft of something without feeling compelled to start editing it before you're finished (you can even disable the backspace key). If you're using it for a daily writing practice (I use it for my journal), you can set a target word count for each session and see a visual indicator of your progress towards your goal as the background gradually shifts from one color to another (you can also receive a pop-up notification when you finally hit the target). There are small distractions/inspirations to look at if you get stuck (random words and definitions, couplets from Shakespeare's sonnets, Oblique Strategies) and the output features allow you to email your text or save it to your hard drive without even having to look at it once.
Role: developer
posted by raisindebt (13 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite

I would have never thought of that. This is really neat.
posted by ignignokt at 1:17 PM on November 19, 2013

This is my new favorite thing.
posted by roger ackroyd at 3:41 PM on November 19, 2013

Awesome! Well done.
posted by NikitaNikita at 5:31 PM on November 19, 2013

Neat! On OSX you may have to go to keyboard preferences/mission control to turn off it's ctrl-1, etc. keyboard shortcuts in order to get to the settings screen on this.
posted by nightwood at 8:13 PM on November 19, 2013

Thank you all! And that's really helpful to know, nightwood; I'm a Windows person and the MBP I tested this on must have already had those disabled. Maybe I can figure out some other key scheme or at least put an FYI in the splash screen.
posted by raisindebt at 8:26 PM on November 19, 2013

I don't think I have this problem but am nevertheless intrigued by this clever-looking workaround!
posted by Anything at 3:28 AM on November 20, 2013

I can't get to ctrl+1 on Firefox 25 because that's the shortcut key for "go to your first tab".
posted by chavenet at 3:32 AM on November 20, 2013

This feels like the tool for writing "On The Road" in a web browser. I love it.
posted by Presidente de China at 6:41 AM on November 20, 2013

I typed a little & then realized I couldn't remember the key combo to be able to see my text/save/etc. I had to reload the page in another tab to see the splash screen again. Maybe there could be something like a little "?" in a corner that would pop up the menu? Other than that moment of confusion, I thought this was a neat idea.
posted by belladonna at 4:20 PM on November 21, 2013

I had been (obviously) super resistant to any GUI stuff at all, but that's a good idea, belladonna. Thanks!
posted by raisindebt at 7:05 AM on November 22, 2013

I love this! Such a great idea and it's so well executed.
posted by aparrish at 3:35 PM on November 22, 2013

This is excellent. Thank you.
posted by linear_arborescent_thought at 1:08 PM on November 25, 2013

Neat idea.

Am I the only one who misread the message as telling us to hit "ctrl + l"?
posted by Jacob Knitig at 6:39 PM on November 26, 2013 [1 favorite]

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