Drawing with a Touch Pad Feels Jumpy


When I use the touch pad on my PowerBook to draw in PowerCADD the cursor feels jumpy and imprecise. This makes it very difficult or almost impossible to use snapping effectively, perform simple drag to move operations, or navigate using the interactive Pan Tool. How to do fix the problem?


PowerCADD v6 and Mac OS? X Panther or Mac OS 9
PowerCADD v7 and Mac OS X Tiger (10.4.4) or newer recommended


The nature of drawing with a computer requires fine control in tracking the position of the mouse and cursor to achieve smooth and accurate results. Tracking accuracy with external mice or a tablet and stylus will typically provide better accuracy and improve the feel of drawing in any application. However, there are times when using the trackpad on a laptop is necessary.

Ignore Accidental Trackpad Input (a System Level Preference) is often checked ON to avoid those frustrating moments when the trackpad is accidentally touched during a typing or scrolling operation in traditional word processing or general use applications. The accidental touches cause significant frustration as the cursor moves or jumps to a new insertion point without the user recognizing what happened. However, PowerCADD (and other drawing applications) don't see those minor touches of the trackpad as accidental. Rather, the minor mouse movements are important nuances to how a drawing applications provides important visual feedback and is critical to the feel of the drawing process.

What to do

The fix for improving the tracking and feel of drawing with a trackpad is simple:

  1. Choose Apple Menu > System Preferences > Mouse & Keyboard > Trackpad
  2. Uncheck Ignore Accidental Trackpad Input (unchecked = Off)
  3. Choose System Preferences > Quit System Preferences

Now, when you return to PowerCADD, the cursor should feel much smoother and more responsive.

We hope that helps

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