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Friday, 31 July 2015

Loose Leaf - App Review



A picture is worth a thousand words; although some wordsmiths may well disagree, for the rest of us mortals, it is probably true. 'Loose Leaf' perhaps sees itself as your gateway to using various types of pictures to help communicate or also to help represent things in your mind's eye.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
It's perhaps easiest to take you from a blank page and introduce the tools... this isn't necessarily the order in which you would actually use the App.

Use your finger to write anything you wish, in a variety of colours, and rub out as required.

Having given the App access to your photos, you can import them into the App. The nifty part is that you can crop them, again with a finger movement (so there is no restriction to rectangles). You can then use two fingers to move the cropped part.

A brilliant part of this is that if you move the cropped image to the edge of your page, it effectively becomes another tool, and will appear as sun on a blank page, thereby making it easy to use the cropped image on another page.

Shaking any scrap image will change the layer on which it is, they giving you control over the 'depth' of any given image; this is great for collages.

Once you have a number of pages in your scrapbook, you need to pinch the whole page to get access to all the pages me then pick the one you wish to edit.

You can easily export your images to a multitude of social media sites, including Facebook and Twitter.

Cost
Unbelievably, you get all this for $0 (absolutely free).

Indispensability
Indispensable? Probably not. Useful? Absolutely.

Dependability
This is an iPad only App.

Although the App can be used in both portrait and landscape modes, the tools remain as for portrait; this isn't actually a problem.

Security
The linking to social media is the usual double edged sword.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Layers of photos with drawings.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Loose Leaf here and support for the App here.


Thursday, 30 July 2015

Orby Widgets - App Review



Are you an iOS notification centre fanatic? If you are, this App is right up your street; if you're not then, take a look at this App as it just might convert you.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
What this App actually does is allow you to add loads of widgets to your notification centre; you choose which ones, and how they behave.

In order top do this, scroll from the top of your iOS screen to open the notification centre, then scroll to the bottom of the notification centre to 'edit' and then add any of the Orby widgets you fancy.

The options available to you are:

App Launcher - Choose any of your Apps to launch directly from here
Battery - charge left and estimated time until you run out
Calculator - this is a calculator within the notification centre
Conversations - direct access for various messaging applications
CPU - displays used and available
Memory - shows usage and by type
Network - keep track of wi-fi and cellular usage
Network Addresses - displays Mac and IP addresses of network to which you are connected
Runtime - displays when your iOS device was last booted
Share - Twitter and Facebook feeds, including the ability to share currently playing music
Speed Call - Tap on the contact to call (this is excellent)
Storage - displays used and available

Cost
The App costs a nominal $1.

Indispensability
If you don't use the notification centre then, you won't use the App but, with all the options available, it could well be the time to start.

Dependability
It works!

Security
As usual, you just need to be a little careful with the direct connections to Facebook and Twitter, if you use them.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Notification centre used as a tool.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Orby Widgets here and support for the App here.


Monday, 27 July 2015

Rain Sounds HQ - App Review



Do you have problems getting to sleep? This App claims that its calming sounds will help you fall into the arms of Morpheus.

If you're 'enjoying' a heat wave, you might find that things feel a little cooler with some of these sounds in the background.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
The App comes with 'Cologne Thunderstorm', 'Oregon Coastal Rain forest', 'Rain on Japanese Temple', and 'Small River in Scotland' pre loaded. To play any of these, just tap the icon. You can then simply listen to the sound, or have a timed play (10, 20, 30, 45, 60, 90 minutes), or add it to a mix of your own. In this case you can adjust the individual volumes so as to create the effect you want.

Cost
The basic App is free and there are more sounds available from related Apps by the developer.

Indispensability
If you have difficulty getting to sleep (or want to try the 'cooling' the atmosphere), it's worth giving it a try.

Dependability
Rain Sounds HQ is an iPhone App which works in 1x and 2x modes on an iPad. It is extremely simple to use and reliable.

Security
This is a self contained App so without prima facie issues.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Relaxing...

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Rain Sounds HQ here and support for the App here.


Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Srcfari - App Review



Do you sometimes wonder how something was done on a website, want to find something specific, or are simply nosey?

Srcfari is just what you've been waiting for, as far as iOS is concerned.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
Enter a website url into the address bar of the App. This will then display the page, just as you would see it in Safari, or any other browser.

You can now browse the assets (style sheets, scripts, images) that are on the sheet, as well as getting the source code for the sheet.

You can then also copy the source to the clipboard, or e-mail it.

Cost
The App costs $2.

Indispensability
Well, that really depends on what use you plan on making of the App; your call.

Dependability
You need to make sure that you allow time for a page to fully load.

Security
This is a standalone App. The security issue is really about how you will use your snooping.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Useful specialised tool.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Srcfari here and support for the App here.


Thursday, 9 July 2015

ViewExif - App Review



This App gives you access to an amazing amount of information about your photos (remember that when you 'share').

There is also another very useful aspect when you compare 2 photographs and attempt to discover why one is better than the other.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
The App includes a 'user manual'. This actually consists of a few screen shots but makes it clear how to use the App.

The important part is that, once you have installed the App, you don't actually use it...

In fact you go to your Photos App, pick any photos, and then go to the icon at the bottom left of the screen. Choose More and then turn on ViewExif. You can now go back to your photo and press ViewExif.

The information you will see includes:

Name
Size
Dimensions
Date and Time
ISO Speed
F number
Exposure time
Exposure mode
Focal length
Flash (did or did not fire)
Equivalent focal length in 35mm film
Colour space
DPI width
DPI height
Depth
Brightness
White balance
Altitude
Latitude
Longitude
Location
Camera make
Camera model
Lens make
Lens model

... more than you can shake a stick at.

Cost
The App costs a nominal $1.

Indispensability
Obviously, you continue to take photos as you did before but, you have a whole load more information available.

Dependability
The information which could be accurately tested proved to be correct.

Security
This App is wholly downloaded and self-contained.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Amaze yourself at the detail stored with your snaps.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get ViewExif here and support for the App here.


Friday, 3 July 2015

Daily Goals - App Review



According to the developers, this is 'an ultra simple and colourful app that helps you keep track of your habits.

Set goals, track progress, achieve target... well, that's the theory at least.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
You start off by adding a 'habit', give it a colour, a schedule (choose the days or the number of times per week), set start and end dates, and opt in or out of receiving a reminder on appropriate days.

You will now have graphical representations of your actions, on a calendar basis (history), per habit basis, as well as an overall analysis.

Cost
The App cost $4.

Indispensability
Anything that helps you achieve your targets is a welcome addition to a routine. This App could give the visual cues that motivate you.

Dependability
The App works, it's up to you to make the effort.

Security
You can export your App data in .xlsx (Excel) or SQLite format.

ACIDS Test Rating:

If you don't succeed, give the App a try.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Daily Goals here and support for the App here.


Monday, 29 June 2015

WaterMinder - App Review



We probably all know that drinking water is good for you... until some helpful person comes along and tells you it contains too much sodium, or whatever.

If you are keen on monitoring your progress, take a look at this App.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
When you first open the App you are invited to enter your name, weight and sex.

You'll probably want to go to settings next as, even if you've entered your weight in kilos, the default of glasses measured in U.S. oz is selected; this also allows you to set various other parameters such as badges, reminders, and shaking to undo, as well as adding custom 'cup' sizes.

Now, whenever you drink water, just tap the 'cup' size. The amusing graphic shows your body filling from your feet, until you are depicted as all blue.

A record is kept of your consumption, and can easily be analysed by today, week, month, and year, so that you can view your progress.

You can also export your water consumption to a csv file for inputting somewhere else.

Cost
The App costs $2.

Indispensability
You need to be the judge of this.

Dependability
The App is very easy to use and the dependability is really up to you remembering to input your water intake.

Security
This is a standalone App.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Useful if you want to track your water intake with a graphical representation.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get WaterMinder here and support for the App here.


Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Momento - App Review



The keeping of a diary, or journal, has been practised for centuries, without changing to any great extent. People kept records of what they did, interactions, and thoughts. Initially it was using pen/pencil and paper, and stayed that way for a very long time. Although no doubt a few people turned to typewriters when they became available, it was the advent of computers for everyone and smart phones (not to mention other devices) that made keeping a journal more of an electronic pastime.

The fact is that the XXIst century, for better or worse, has brought with it a dramatic change in the way we interact. What this App does is recognise that change and give you a tool for today.



Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
The best way to start using the App is to go to Settings/Feeds and add the social media to which you post. You can then sit back and relax as masses (well, that kind of depends on you) of information is added to your diary.

You can now set reminders to act as prompts where you ask yourself a question on a daily basis, at a prearranged time.

You can now also create moments (journal entries) for today (or whenever). These are freely editable and work like a traditional diary.

Cost
This App costs a measly $1.

Indispensability
If you're already keeping a diary (or intend to start one) and you regularly post to social media then, this App will give you a fuller picture without any extra effort on your part.

Dependability
Memento is an App designed for the iPhone (seems odd but, there you have it) which works fine on an iPad in 1x or 2x modes.

Security
Memento allows you to create backups of your data and then also export as plain text.

The information on your social media are pulled into the App; this is not a two way process.

The App allows for the creation of a 4 digit pass code.

ACIDS Test Rating:

XXIst century journal

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Momento here and support for the App here.


Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Trimaginator - App Review



The late Boris Delaunay was a mathematician and mountain climber who gave his name to the Delaunay Triangulation (in mathematics and computational geometry, a Delaunay triangulation for a set P of points in a plane is a triangulation DT(P) such that no point in P is inside the circumcircle of any triangle in DT(P). Delaunay triangulations maximise the minimum angle of all the angles of the triangles in the triangulation; they tend to avoid skinny triangles - with thanks to Wikipedia).

This App makes use of this to manipulate images so that are turned into a mesh made up of triangles. If you go to the developer's Facebook support page, you'll get a good idea of the great things that can be done.

It's different to anything else.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
There are icons at the top left, top right, and bottom right corners of your screen.

It's possibly easiest to start with the icons at the top left and either import an image from your iOS device, or take a photograph with your camera.

Having done that, go to the top right and choose one of the point generators and then use the +/- at the bottom right, together with your fingers for a more personalised result.

You can then save the result of share it via Facebook or Twitter.

Cost
The App costs $2.

Indispensability
In fairness, as good as the effect is, it is difficult to think of too many uses for the App, unless you are going to make it your signature style (and why not).

Dependability
The App works as indicated but it is a little fiddly... then again, it is art.

Security
You'll need to give the App access to your photos, and can post directly to Facebook or Twitter.

ACIDS Test Rating:

This is something 'completely different'... perhaps of special appeal to Monty Python fans.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Trimaginator here and support for the App here.


Thursday, 11 June 2015

Say Play - App Review



Do you remember the original iPods with their clickwheel? They were great at the time but when we got touch screens, they seemed to have come from the ark.

In a way, Say Play takes you to the next step.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
The interface couldn't be much simpler, there is a box with 'What should I play?', and an unmissable red button at the bottom of the screen. Press the red button and speak the song that you wish to hear, and (the bonus) see it being performed, sometimes with the lyrics, an even tutorials on how to play.

The settings allow you to set a language, as well as provide advertising on the App for Facebook, Twitter, E-mail. or SMS.

Cost
In fairness, this is a significant downside as it is an unusually high $10.

Indispensability
Like most things, you can live without it but, it certainly is very entertaining.

Dependability
Not surprisingly, although the App is excellent at recognising your voice, there are times when the music returns is unexpected... although it has to be said that this can actually add to the enjoyment.

An Internet connection is required to be able to stream the content.

Security
This is a standalone App, although you need to give access to your microphone.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Great fun.

To find out how the ACIDS Test works, click here.


You can get Say Play here and support for the App here.