Many apps support handwritten gestures for common actions by providing a mode to distinguish strokes from gestures. However, mode switching can create friction. Moreover, attempting to reduce friction by eliminating the mode switch can lead to gestures being triggered unintentionally, unreliably, or unpredictably. This disclosure describes the use of special visual treatment of touchscreen traces that are detected as potential gestures to distinguish the trace from both strokes and gestures, and to convey to the user the potential behavior of the trace. Per the techniques, a trace made on a touchscreen can be either a gesture or a stroke. For example, a circle around a word could be a gesture that selects the word, or it could be a stroke that is part of the handwritten text. A circle that triggers selection can have a subtle glow to indicate that it can select strokes inside it.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.