As a UX designer and Product Designer, I loath such gimmicks.
Wade, I humbly disagree with you on your bullet-point list.
Jef Lippiatt

As a user, I’ve seen how some app designers have integrated into their particular app’s workflow, and it makes me drool.

It’s not a gimmick! Jesus, people like you said iPhone would fail because it had a soft keyboard, and yet we can have multiple languages, emojis, context specificity, and everything else with it.

That’s what Touch Bar is. It’s a context specific soft keyboard, that does not impede one’s ability to type by touch. As far as compromises go, it’s great.

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