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New Filters Give Flickr More Flash
August 30, 2013
Yahoo raised the ante in its high-stakes competition with Facebook, Twitter and Google for the hearts and minds of mobile photo sharers with its release of a Flickr for iOS update. The new edition of the app is loaded with features aimed at photo sharers with artistic proclivities. "We want to empower creatives," said Flickr Head of Product Markus Spiering.
New Coat of Polish Heightens DevonNote's Shine
August 27, 2013
One of the best things about a computer is it gives you a single place to store scraps of information and research that used to be scattered in notebooks and paper notes across your office. One of the worst things about a computer is it gives you a single place to store scraps of information and research that used to be scattered in notebooks and paper notes across your office.
Vevo Brings Music to Life Through Video
August 26, 2013
If you've watched and listened to music videos posted on YouTube, you've likely seen quite a few major stars with official channels featuring their names with "Vevo" slapped on the end of it, like OneRepublicVevo or LukeBryanVevo. Outside of YouTube, Vevo is a Web-based music video service that also has an iOS app. Said app was just updated to provide AirPlay support, in fact.
Hey Buddy, Fix Your Face - Oh Wait, I Can Do It for You With Facetune
August 19, 2013
Longtime readers know I'm a fan of straightforward apps that do one core thing really well. Facetune lets you fancy up portrait photos of your friends -- or your selfies -- and it's fantastic. In fact, it's got the perfect blend of powerful tools with utter simplicity. Want to whiten your best man's yellowish teeth? No problem. Boom, white like Ryan Seacrest.
YouTube Guys Give Video Editors a Brand New Playground
August 8, 2013
It appears YouTube cofounders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen want to mix it up with Vine and Instagram. Their video-editing app, MixBit, made its iOS debut on Thursday. An Android version is coming soon. MixBit works much like Vine and Instagram, allowing users to shoot and share short-form videos of up to 16 seconds. However, MixBit goes a big step further, letting users stitch clips together.
Cool FPS Nav Doesn't Rescue The Drowning's Sinking Vision
August 5, 2013
The Drowning is an evolutionary new first-person shooter iOS game. It boasts a graphically rich post-apocalyptic world where an ecological disaster has turned millions of people into naked-but-genderless zombie-like monsters with bald skullish heads and claw hands. They try to kill you. You try to survive by shooting them or bludgeoning them when they get too close, and you have to reload.
Apple Could Pay Staggering Price for E-Book Shenanigans
August 2, 2013
The U.S. Justice Department and 33 states' attorneys general have proposed remedies against Apple for its conviction on e-book price-fixing that could dry up a large portion of the company's revenue stream while benefiting Amazon and, possibly, Google. The proposed final judgment seeks to have Apple terminate contracts with the five codefendant publishers in the case.
The Controversial, Toothless, 'Landmark' Mobile Transparency Code
August 2, 2013
Mobile device users' privacy will be safeguarded under a new transparency code of conduct created in an effort involving 40 groups ranging from businesses to advocacy groups and led by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. NTIA Administrator Lawrence E. Strickling hailed the code as "a seminal milestone in the efforts to enhance consumer privacy on mobile devices."
Hackers Demand Ransom for Hijacked Androids
July 30, 2013
Ransomware has made the jump from personal computers to the Android world. Android.FakeAV.C, a new breed of ransomware, has turned up in Asia -- almost half of it in India and Indonesia -- according to an alert by Bitdefender security researcher Liviu Arsene. Mobile ransomware works much like its PC kin. In a PC, a malware program seizes control of a computer and demands a ransom for its release.
Come to the Ear Monsters Ball
July 29, 2013
When I stumble upon a fresh and creative app, particularly an app that pushes humanity forward in cold dark universe, I take a closer look. One such app is Ear Monsters: A 3D Audio Game. Monsters from a parallel dimension have created wormholes to invade our universe. They quickly become invisible in our world, but luckily for us, they don't realize we can still hear them.
Security Breach Knocks Apple for an Infinite Loop
July 22, 2013
Three days after Apple took down its developer website claiming it was performing unscheduled maintenance, the company emailed devs admitting the site had been hacked and some data may have been stolen. It also posted a message on the site stating that some developers' names, mailing addresses and email addresses may have been exposed, but that sensitive information could not be accessed.
Briefly Transforms Images of Your Life Into an Ecstatic Blur
July 22, 2013
Before now, it never even occurred to me to try to show 500 photos in under a minute -- or thousands of photos in just a few minutes. Briefly lets you do that. How? By quickly and easily converting gobs of photos into a "still motion video." Oh, and the per-photo slide duration is fast. Really fast. Sub-second fast. The feeling was all amped-up anticipation, but then boom, it was over.
Limbo Is Dark, Moody, Gory - and Irresistible
July 15, 2013
Some games on iOS are original creations -- designed for the touch interface and ready for fun -- while others are ports from previously released PC or console games, giving these popular-yet-obscure titles a whole new audience and life on iPads and iPhones. Enter Limbo, first released in 2010 exclusively for the Xbox Live Arcade. Playdead later ported it to PS3, Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.
Blinding Light and Deep Dark Evil: Apple's App Store After 5 Years
July 11, 2013
The iTunes App Store is one of the most transformative Apple innovations ever, perhaps the most important to the world, and yet, despite its shiny bright flickering light of goodness, it's freakin' evil. I've been reflecting on the 5th anniversary of the App Store, and in some ways, I'm blinded by the staggering numbers and pure joy certain apps have brought to my life.
Apple Forfeits Claim to the 'App Store' Name
July 10, 2013
Apple has ended its lawsuit against Amazon over the right to use the "app store" name. U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton dismissed the case at Apple's request, heading off a trial that was scheduled to begin in August. Apple has been selling apps for its iOS devices via its iTunes App Store since July 2008. Apple alleged that Amazon's use of the "appstore" name violated its trademark.
Portrait+ Makes Everyone Beautiful People
July 9, 2013
ArcSoft may strike a dissonant note among PC users. It has been a prime contributor to the bloatware libraries found on many new Windows laptops and desktops. Nevertheless, its professional and prosumer product lines have proven to be quality alternatives to the higher-priced offerings of its competitors. That's true of one of its recent offerings, Portrait+.
The AOL: Mail, News, Weather & Video App Is Like High Fructose Corn Syrup
July 8, 2013
There's been a lot going on in the content aggregation world this summer, mostly due to Google turning off the power to its Google Reader. I've been following the action with half an eye open, not particularly invested in the outcome, mostly because I prefer to get my news, articles, reviews and columns directly from the original source.
The Human Face of Big Data Is a Mind-Expanding Adventure
July 1, 2013
"Big Data" is one of the most apt -- and annoying -- new terms to describe a gazillion points of information all used to understand and predict things the human mind can't parse on its own. The term has been exploited by large technology corporations to sell software and hardware that promises business executives answers that are more accurate and useful than anything coming from a gut feeling.
The Road to Health Is Paved With Good Nutrition Apps
June 25, 2013
To get rid of the clutter of meal ideas, recipes and grocery lists stuck on his family's refrigerator, Henrik Nielson decided to create an app that could do the job better. Food Planner lets users import recipes from the Web or create them manually, then generates shopping lists and meal plans. The app's goal is to make it easier and more convenient for people to make healthy meals at home.
Cut Calculator Lets You Rip Away Without Sweating Bullets
June 24, 2013
Back when I was paying for ramen noodles and graduate school by working as a framer for a small construction outfit, the most stressful event I faced was when I had to cut the support beams for a set of stairs going into a new restaurant. One wrong cut and I would have wasted hundreds of dollars on a suddenly useless beam. It's even more stressful if the job is your own.
Froguts Illuminates More Than a Frog's Insides
June 17, 2013
Dissecting frogs in high school biology classes used to be a rite of passage. It was a physical, visceral method for teaching kids that living organisms have common pieces and parts: organs, muscle, nerves and connective tissue. Kids learned that even frogs have hearts, lungs and brains. With a real dead frog, though, the lesson seems to be larger than just the anatomy.
Foursquare Paves a New Path Down Memory Lane
June 14, 2013
Mobile technologies may tend to focus on life's present and future, but Foursquare this week launched a feature that gives users new insight into the past. Specifically, the location-based social networking service on Thursday introduced the Foursquare Time Machine, a tool that allows users to retrace the steps of their past check-ins through a digital visualization.
WWDC 2013: All About Managing Expectations
June 12, 2013
There was no shortage of news coming out of Apple's annual Worldwide Developers Conference this week, including a glimpse at the next generation of iOS. On the hardware front, meanwhile, the company revealed it will launch a new desktop computer and a refreshed MacBook Air line. Then, of course, there was its new streaming radio application.
All Things Appy: 5 Best iOS Car Apps
June 12, 2013
Cars -- we love them. We're hooked on their looks, their shine, the freedom they represent. The insurance, the payments and the smog checks, maybe less so -- but cars are still a good example of a genre of app that fits well with the smartphone. This week, All Things Appy takes a look at key, free must-have apps in this area, including one for drooling and one for speeding, gambling and swearing.
Radar Cast Pro Puts a Meteorologist in Your Pocket
June 10, 2013
I'm not a weather junkie, but when it's time to get up and go -- a wintertime road trip or a fishing or hiking expedition -- I usually take a peek into the mountains with a weather app that I've now replaced with an even better version. The new app? Radar Cast Pro - NOAA Hi-Def FutureCast, Push Notifications, Lightning Strikes & Weather by WeatherSphere.
When Apple Whispers to Devs, Consumers Read Lips
June 6, 2013
When Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference kicks off next week in San Francisco, it won't just be application developers watching. While the company speaks to business partners and professionals who use core Apple tools every day, the rest of the Apple enthusiast world will be paying close attention. What will Apple reveal? A new iWatch? The next iPhone? No and no.
Make Your Kids Stars With a Little Disney Movie Magic
June 3, 2013
If you're a parent, there's a great chance that your iPhone will house a whole series of photos and videos featuring your kids following a road trip, a visit to the beach, a hike or a soccer game. Enter Story, a free app from Disney for the iPhone. Story accesses the photos and video stored on your iPhone and -- using the metadata -- combines them into a story. There are some limited editing options, but not enough to overwhelm.
Google Offers a New Bag of Gmail Sorting Tricks
May 30, 2013
Google has unveiled a new Gmail design to give users more organizational control over a cluttered in-box.The revamped in-box is an option; users who like the approach can separate their email into four tabs: primary, promotions, social and updates. Primary is for the mail from friends, families or colleagues that a user would want to read and perhaps save.
The iWatch's Time Will Be 2014, Says Analyst
May 24, 2013
Will we see an iWatch in 2014? Ming-Chi Kuo thinks so. In a research note this week, the KGI Securities analyst predicted that Apple had too much on its plate in 2013 to introduce a smartwatch, but is readying the device for next year. The company's entry into the wearable computer market will be a device that attaches to the wrist, Kuo said, but it will not be positioned as a watch.
The Clock Is Ticking on 30/30's Simple, Powerful Task Manager
May 20, 2013
I'm a sucker for productivity management -- too much to do, never enough time, and there is always, it seems, some sort of flashing distraction. There are plenty of people out there with similar problems: Even if they survived a round of layoffs, there's usually a business need to get more done with fewer resources and people.
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Should social media sites be held accountable for terrorists' communications?
Yes -- They are providing a platform to facilitate murder and mayhem.
Yes -- Everything must be done to protect society from danger.
Maybe -- I'm not sure they have the technological capability to stop them.
Maybe -- I'm not convinced terrorists are using them for serious plotting.
No -- Authorities should monitor social networks to gather intelligence.
No -- Social networks are no different than phone carriers or mail services.