Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Thing 23. Evaluate 23 Things

All in all, quite a useful course. I appreciate the effort taken by those involved to select topics and find appropriate and FREE apps to download and try out. I was already using many of the apps suggested. But, by undertaking the lessons, I was "forced" to dig deeper. I really learned how to use several of the apps, exploring how powerful quite a few of them were. I discovered some of their strengths, and quite often, their flaws. In fact, I often went beyond the app to the developer's website for more information, tips and trouble-shooting (sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't). So, a lot of success, some lack of success, but always an interesting learning experience. Thanks so much for making 23 Mobile Things available.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Thing 22. Discovering Apps

Slice was the app of choice for this Thing. It's a delivery tracker. You give the app your email address(s) and it retrieves online shopping information-without having to enter tracking numbers--pretty cool. Info provided includes receipts, shipping notices, return policies and price changes on products ordered. If you want, Slice will also give you info on specials and recalls. Interesting, the app tracks how much cash you're shelling out online--something I'm not sure if I want to know!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Thing 21. Free-for-all

TripIt was my choice for this Thing. It's a pretty handy travel app, allowing you to set up an account that auto-forwards your various itineraries to your phone: flight, lodging and rental car. TripIt also sends you emails or texts to alert you to upcoming travel or possible problems via alerts. I do wish it would store boarding passes, though, like other travel apps. Total one-stop travel shopping would be really nice. Maybe I'd better check out the upgrade....

Thing 20. Games

Candy Crush was my choice for this Thing. A confession: I don't like games; I'm boring--I prefer to do something to broaden my mind when being entertained, and gaming on my iPhone seems like a total waste. Of course I can see Candy Crush's appeal to "normal" folks. The app has lots of bright colors, makes cute noises when you move the those little pieces of candy and provides a sense of accomplishment when you manage to move to the next level. Gotta say, though, the baked-in links to other apps/games is super-annoying.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Thing 19. Hobbies

Vivino Wine Scanner was my choice for this Thing. While I haven't yet used it (as I'm in the office and I don't work in a liquor store), I like the most powerful function of the app: you can snap a pic of a wine label, add your review, record the store where you bought it and the price and save it on a wish list. All this can be accessed by your friends, so you can share your vino experience. Vivino also provides basic/advanced details about the wine: location where it's grown, tons of grape info, other vines produced by the house, food pairing and vintage selection.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Thing 18. Education

TED is an app that works two ways for me: it's educational AND entertaining. I really enjoy hearing interesting people talk about subjects they enjoy or know a lot about. TED's "surprise me" feature is way cool: you choose a topic (jaw-dropping is the best), then select the amount of time you want to spend, and the app presents you with one or a series of talks to watch. Of course, there are also topics to browse and a search engine.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Thing 17. Connecting to the Community

For this Thing, I downloaded Minnneapolis Skyway. Skyway is a pretty useful app. I don't use Skyways much (don't believe in them, despite the cold--they're street-front killers) so when I do, I sometimes get lost. I've ended up going down endless blank corridors, or mistakenly opened emergency-exit doors and once found myself in dank, deserted building where the staircase emptied into a funky alley with real live rats. Minneapolis Skyway hopefully puts a stop to that. It also allows you to search and browse for business and stores, as well as create favorites. A big caveat though: the app doesn't appear to be updated much. Search on Block E and it provides info on many businesses that have long flown the coop.