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how to make android edittext show a pattern while text is being inserted?

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http://stackoverflow.com – I am developing an Android application in which, the user has to input an answer to an edittext view. In order to make things simpler I want the edit text to keep showing the rest of the edittext hint. For example, if the correct answer is: "Big joe". I generate the following hint:"--- ---" which is 3 dashes then a space and then 3 more dashes . Setting it as a hint is no problem, however, as soon as the user presses on the edittext view the hint vanishes. I want it to stay put and get runned over by the user input. Continuing the example, id user only entered (Wrongly) "Ji" (but wasn't yet do (HowTos)