I've been asked to relay the following question to y'all writers:
What would you want in the ultimate writer tool?
In the context in which that was asked, "tool" specifically referred to software. So the main thrust of the question is: imagine a computer program that would be as helpful to you-as-a-writer as possible. What would its capabilities and features and means of interaction be? What could it do that the tool(s) you currently use can't do?
But if you have thoughts about non-software writing tools (I just know the word "Moleskine" is going to figure prominently in some people's answers), feel free to post those as well.
Feel free to specify imaginary and/or impossible-with-current tech features. (I, for example, would like a truly useful grammar-checker, but I suspect that will require strong AI.)
But I'm particularly interested in hearing about features that could actually be implemented in the real world.
But if you have no idea what can and can't be done with computers, don't let that stop you.
Think about it at all sorts of levels, from spelling and punctuation to paragraphing and formatting, from characters and settings and plots to themes, from wordcount and automatic standard manuscript formatting to keyboard shortcuts, from speech recognition to chips in your head, from research assistance to automatic character name generation, from accidental-plagiarism detection to ability to add footnotes. And definitely don't limit yourself to things I just listed. Go wild.
If you decide to answer in your own journal rather than here, please post a trackback or a comment with a link to your entry.