I’ve long been a proponent of natural language parsing in calendar apps. In 2013, it’s a genuine surprise to me when a modern calendar application doesn’t allow you to type your schedule in naturally. If I’m going to a play on Friday (which I am), I want to be able to type “Tim’s play on Friday from 7:30–9:30” in the event creation field and have the event ready to go. Calendar.app has this all wrong, and Fantastical wiped its clock clean when it debuted with natural language parsing last year.
But now there’s Fantastical 2. More than just a re-skin, it brings some great new features and enhancements to the table. At this point, though, Fantastical isn’t alone. It’s also dealing with contenders like Horizon and Calendars 5 by Readdle, both of which bring their own unique tricks to the table. Despite that, though, Fantastical isn’t just king of the calendar throne, it’s also my most-used app every day. It’s the one that manages everything for me now, and it’s an automatic must for me for anybody I know with an iPhone. Read on to find out what makes this not just a great update, but one of the best iPhone apps available and my pick for the best utility app of the year. (more…)
I’m not addicted to television or anything like that, but I like to keep up with what’s on TV. I go through binges a fair bit, sometimes on Netflix, but I also like to keep up with a couple sitcoms. I loathe myself for it, but I have a little bit of a soft spot for Big Bang Theory. I love HBO too. I’m also checking out apps to see if there are any good ones to help me schedule my week a little bit.
One that’s been making the rounds recently is Televised, an app that helps you keep track of what’s coming up on television. Read on to find out how it compares to the competition and whether or not it’s worth trying for all you TV diehards.
I’ve got something of an addiction to stargazing apps. While some app addicts have a folder for Twitter apps or Pinboard apps, I’ve got a folder simply labeled “Stars.” The thing is, I’m not an astronomer. I know as much about the stars as I do about neuroscience — almost nothing. I can point out the Big Dipper. My closest friend is a serious stargazer, and she’s always pointing things out to me, but the Big Dipper is embarrassingly about as far as I can get on my own.
These apps, then, have really helped me out on my journey to learn more about the night sky. They’re equally informative and always brilliantly designed. The ones that have an iPad interface are always stellar there as well, but I mostly fiddle on my iPhone, which is like staring into a portal in our own universe. It blows me away. But the problem is, living in the city, I rarely know when I can go check out stars. There’s no “forecast app for stargazers.” Or at least, there never used to be. Recently, I’ve been using Sky Live, a beautiful app that helps me know when I should leave my house. Read on to find out why this is a must-try for night owls.
Measuring your body’s mass, or weighing, will likely be something you do more and more, especially after the holidays and the feast of food that usually brings. You may also be looking for a way to get into shape as a New Year’s Resolution. Regardless, you’re going to be interested in your weight.
Some of the high-end iPhone weight trackers connect to Bluetooth scales or other peripherals to automatically update your weight every time you take the time to step onto the scale. Weightless isn’t that — it’s a low-tech solution to a problem many have. Additionally, it’s cheap, and is compatible with any scale you may have around the house. Is it useful everyday? Does it actually help to manage your weight? (more…)
My hunt for the perfect sports app continues unabated. In my mind, a sports app has to strike a perfect balance between information density, speed, and intuitiveness. None that I have tested have quite hit that mark.
The latest in the lineup of apps to receive my attention is CBS Sports. Recently redesigned for iOS 7, the app sports a slick new interface, as well as support for all of iOS 7’s gestures. Additionally, it offers support for a wide range of leagues and sports. Is it able to finally strike that balance between statistics and design? (more…)
Last month, I was loafing round the house with my phone wondering how cold it was outside. Being the ridiculously technology-glued person I am, I started searching for a weather station that integrates with the Web, tablets, and smartphones. (Obviously, stepping into the sun was out of the question, because I’m a vampire [they’re real]). After a few clicks, I found the Netatmo, a very slick looking solution to checking the weather when you’re not in a walking mood.
The very idea of this may sound ridiculous, I know. However, there is a purpose for everything and I decided to give Netatmo a try. After all, Wired and Time wouldn’t feature it unless there is something more than the basic weather station. Or so I thought. (more…)
If there’s one thing I’m addicted to about my iPhone, it’s the camera-taking experience. I love Instagram. When I do creative work, it’s the place I share my progress with my friends and followers (so long as the client allows it). It’s also where I share photos my other loves: coffee, technology, and more coffee. (I promise I have real friends; I just keep most of my relationships private.)
Some apps make the Instagram experience a little better, though. One of my favourites (apart from the indisputably excellent VSCO Cam) has been around a long time, and it’s called A Beautiful Mess. I’ve been meaning to review it for a while, but I decided to let the developer finish up the iOS 7 update. It was worth the wait. Read on to find out more about what makes this a great, and fully-featured, photo editor for picture sharing.
By this point you know App.net, the platform for apps conceived by Dalton Caldwell who came up with a Twitter-like prototype to bring some developers to expand the service in unlimited ways. Although they still haven’t cut the umbilical cord and App.net remains a Twitter clone, App.net differs from its muse by not selling its users, not removing essential features like blocking and muting, and gathering an enthusiastic community.
I truly recommend you to join App.net and jump into a conversation — I heard the folks there love to chat — but you want a real client, not their web demo Alpha, and among so many apps to pick, which was the objective after all, it turns out to be a hard task. Then what if I say you can get the best App.net experience in your iPhone for free? You just can’t beat that, so follow up as we cover everything you need to know about Riposte, the first App.net you should get.
Camera apps are among the most popular on the App Store. From social networks based upon photos to simple apps that make collages, all types of activities that are based on photos are active pieces of the market.
Most of these apps rely upon Apple’s own Camera app for the photo itself. This isn’t surprising — the native Camera app is utterly fantastic in almost any condition, as Apple has taken its time to optimize in every possible way. Camera Plus — note the word “Plus,” not the symbol — takes on Apple’s solution, as well as all other competitors. (more…)
I have to admit that I’m relatively new to Dribbble. If you’re not aware, it’s a social network for designers to post their newest work and get feedback from the community. You can read a review of it on Web.AppStorm here. I actually really like it as a tool, and although I haven’t been invited yet to post anything or comment on other people’s designs (feel free to invite me if you’re a user, by the way), I really like looking through the service and getting inspired by all the amazing work that’s available.
Although Dribbble has a lovely mobile site that can do most of what you’ll need, there’s a very healthy amount of iPhone apps available for the service as well. When the developer of Hooops reached out to me and I saw some of the pictures, I had to check it out. (more…)