Saturday, 27 April 2013

App-ly Named...

For something different, I thought I would do an entry reviewing my favourite apps on my iPhone. Pictured below is a selection of some of my apps (basically the icons that came out when I did a screen dump from iTunes).

Not sure if I have mentioned it, but I don't know what I did before I got an iPhone... There are so many things I can do with it, from searching the net to playing games, listening to music, checking my emails etc. I kind of wish I had it back when I lived in London, as it would have proved invaluable on my daily tube journey, almost and hour each way, not only that, would have been useful for using public transport also. Too be honest the thing my phone probably gets the least use with is texting and calls, due to the sad state of my social life. With the 5,000 free texts I get each month I'd have to be dating the entire 16yo female population of New Zealand to use them up.

Anyhow, lets proceed...

Big Bang!

This is your soundboard app - because I'm cheap I have just stuck with the free version and it's limited amount of sounds, however the few sounds it has are very useful, 3 of them are whip sounds (I looked it up after seeing it on the TV programme The Big Bang (hence the name). The other sounds include a drum roll, badaboom bish..., and a cow mooing.

Obviously I have used this in the past. It is good, but it has it's limitations, but mostly because it is always easier and more functional to create a blog on a computer than on a phone. However, it is useful when on the run/adventure (travelling) to be able to write as I am going along, on the tedious bus journeys etc.

Pocket Jake
I remember back in 2009 my mate Scott had this app when we were in Berlin, and it provided some hearty laughs. I went through a stage of thinking of using it in all sorts of inappropriate situations, such as when I used to work at Corrections, which totally would have been the wrong thing to do, and especially not the audience to encourage thinking that domestic violence is funny.

Note Pad
Useful because I can jot all sorts of lists down, and they are kept in the same place. They then can be subsequently copy and pasted into emails etc.

The Night Sky
This is a cool app, you can check out the stars - by facing the phone to the sky it shows you the names of the stars you are looking at, and also where the satellites are at that moment, including the Hubble telescope and the International Space Station. Also adding value is the fact it identifies Mars and Jupiter etc, which you would otherwise just assume were general stars.

Vodafone App
Useful to know how much data, minutes, or texts I have left, as well as how much credit - although I don't use this so much now, as we have wireless at home, and so I don't eat through my bandwidth anymore. The hardest thing is remembering to top-up my phone each month (I am on the GO-19 prepay plan, for $19 I get 5000 texts, 50minutes of calls, and 500MB of data.)
Good for New Zealand news. Admittedly I only really use it when someone mentions "Did you see XYZ in the news?"

TNT Magazine UK
If there is one thing I miss about London, it is reading the TNT Magazine every week, and it was free. It is a travel magazine (and substantially meatier than the NZ version) Admittedly I don't look at this app much at the moment as I have plenty of other things to do, and it just reminds me of where I can't be.
The App store
Where all good (and some bad) apps can be bought on an iPhone near you!

iPod (now since I have updated to iOS6 - Music)
An MP3 player - good, but doesn't get a whole lot of use by me.

Awesome for counting calories vs calories burnt with exercise. Even comes with a barcode scanner, so you can scan the barcode which automatically uploads the information.
The downside however, is I got a little disheartened when I saw how many calories things I thought were healthy had, e.g. Muesli. And also the barcode scanner makes you prefer eating processed foods, as it is easier to enter the data that way.

Google Maps
To be honest, since updating to iOS6 I still haven't checked out AppleMaps due to the bad reviews, and the first thing I downloaded was GoogleMaps.

Despite my love/hate relationship with Sky (i.e. some awesome documentaries vs. repeating the same crap over and over again and having Tom, Dick, & Sanjay ring me trying to sell me it) I absolutely love their app.
We don't have Sky at home (my sister and brother-in-law do, as mentioned previously) but Sky allows you to have a favourites tab  - so I have put in order all the freeview channels, and then my favourite Sky channels (UKTV, The History Channel, BBC Knowledge etc). Not only that, but you can set reminders so it tells you when something will be on shortly. I have got it down pat that I go through my TV guides each week and set reminders for myself. The only downside is Sky will only show you one week in advance, whereas the TV guide comes out a week early.

Lightsaber (sic)
I don't know about you, but I have definitely had in the past, the desire to whip out a light sabre and annihilate someone or something from the gene pool, especially after the times I have played Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast - a totally awesome game, especially when you are in the mood to cut some stormtroopers in half.
Well, now you can. Such Fun!

CSR Racing
This is, in the words of someone else - living The Fast and Furious. A simple concept, racing a straight 1/4 mile stretch against other cars. Addictive and free, they live in the hope you'll cave and purchase some gold to speed up the upgrading process. 

 Jetpack Joyride
Quite addictive, despite being very repetitive. A good thing about it however, is the fact it doesn't try and up sell you anything, or have ads that slow it down (and eat your data).

 Kingdom Rush
This is a neat game too, not free, but no ads, and has a bit of a challenge to it, and not repetitive.

Awesome for looking anything up, without the BS.

I shall leave it there, as I have to go, and Google image search has helped limit the amount of icon pictures I could find.

Monday, 22 April 2013

My Random Bucket list

Over many years of lonely nights and long journeys, I have come up with several bucket list things I would like to do - none of them are particularly dangerous, but they are a little crazy.

To set the scene, I will tell you a story of one that I just ticked off this weekend.
- Shower myself in confetti
Back when I was a student, I had saved up hole-punchings in a plastic container. Eventually it was full, and to prevent it being opened and making a mess I sellotaped it up. Currently I am tidying my room, and I came across it, and decided it needed to be tossed out (I'm attempting to be brutal) but decided I could get the enjoyment out of it and get rid of it at the same time. So I closed the bathroom and toilet doors from the hallway (as they come off in a little alcove) to isolate the mess, and then just let it rip, and vacuumed up later.

Another one on my mind at the moment, with all the rain we have had this weekend is
- Grab a rugby ball and do huge 'Hollywood' tries in the park next door in the mud and rain. 

Related to that one is this, below.
- Dance in the rain

Another which I intend to do shortly, I have even gone so far as to buy the popcorn is:
- Make popcorn, but without the lid on the pot, so it goes everywhere, and try and catch some in my mouth
Actually I asked my sister if Jordan, her dog, whom I am baby-sitting this week, is allowed to eat popcorn, as he could help me clean up. Turns out, it might make him a little constipated.

- Drive a super car
When I was at Big Boys Toys I got a pamphlet on a company that does that at Pukekohe or Hampton Downs, or somewhere local to Auckland. Suzanne and Bevan had done a similar thing in the UK, and I was keen once I got there, but never got around to it, and wasn't ever in a flush state of economy. I could totally afford it at the moment, however have decided I will use it as an incentive/reward to/for losing 10kgs whenever that happens.

Anyhow, that's a few for now, I will add more when I'm inspired/reminded.