Multitouch Drag is a Drag

While I'm ranting about MacOS... as much as I appreciate multitouch, drag is a little broken. It registers drag-stop as a set time after you lift your fingers off the touchpad, and that's wrong. Here's the sequence of events:

  • I multitouch (three-finger) drag-select a piece of text.
  • I lift my hand off the touchpad and start typing, replacing the text with my own
  • Then a split-second later, and as far as I'm concerned after the drag-select is over and done with, the drag timeout triggers the complete drag-select, it re-selects between the drag start and drag stop, and causes me to overtype the first half of what I was typing!

It took me a few weeks to realize that this was what was happening because it feels like the machine just loses it's mind and starts deleting your text. It also manifests itself in weird and unpredictable ways with the autocomplete such as you'd find in a browser bar.

This bug effectively punishes fast navigators (very bad) and gives a sense that the UI is acting in a random manner (unacceptably bad). The only real solution being to slow yourself down and pause after multitouch drag-select before moving on with typing (or hitting CTRL-V/C/X, etc). I still haven't managed to train myself to slow down long enough between drag and typing and I'm pretty sure I never will.

An easy solution would be to make any keydown trigger the end of the drag-select before registering the keydown. That would prevent someone from doing key presses during a multitouch drag, but I'm not sure I can even think of a use case for that.

I'm hoping this is fixed in 10.8, if not I will be submitting a bug immediately.