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Saturday, 20 December 2014

World History Atlas HD with 3D - App Review



If you are interested in history, or our curious about what went on when and, just as importantly, where, then, this App is made for you.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
This really is a case of history being presented in a very different way; you can throw your textbooks out (well, maybe not).

The App works in landscape mode.

The top two thirds of the screen are taken up by a globe representing the earth. You can spin it to go to the area that interests you (or take a lucky dip spin). Just as in map applications, you can finger pinch to zoom in on particular areas of interest.

The bottom third of the screen represents dates and dynasties.

A button allows you to 'play' to a particular date, with the globe changing, as well as the sphere of influence changing. You can pause it when you want, as well as pause.

Tap on Stories or wiki to get additional detailed information.

Cost
At $10, the App isn't cheap but, compared to the information contained makes textbooks seem exorbitant.

Unsurprisingly, access to wiki information necessitates an Internet connection.

Indispensability
Unless you're actually studying history, you probably won't use this App every day but, it does have many uses. One such application is to be more knowledgeable about places you intend to visit.

Dependability
Scrolling to an exact year on the timeline is a little difficult.

Security
This is a self-contained App.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Makes history even more interesting.

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


You can get World History Atlas HD with 3D here and support for the App here.


Monday, 15 December 2014

Flash Reader - App Review



How are your reading skills?

I'm not asking if you can read (you wouldn't be here, would you) but, how fast do you read, and more importantly, would you like to read faster?

This App could help you read faster, in two ways.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
The App really comes in 2 parts.

The first is about getting material for you to read. This can be achieved by importing text (an e-mail, an article, even a book) from Dropbox, E-mail, Google Drive, iBooks, iTunes, or Kindle. There are perfectly adequate instructions provided with the App to enable you to complete this chore.

The second is the real meat of the App, the actual reading part. You can set up various fonts, sizes, background colours, and most importantly the speed.

One this is done, pick the item you want to read and the words will appear, one by one, at the requested speed.

Cost
The App costs $4.

Indispensability
Although you might not be interested in increasing your reading speed (why not?), the second reason for using this app might well interest you. Having one word at a time rapidly being fired at you means that you must concentrate on what you are reading; distractions are banished. As you can set the speed, you can ensure that this is comfortable for you.

Dependability
There were no issues with the App in testing.

Security
Apart from the usual warning of the (at least theoretical) risk of sharing your information across the cloud, there are no problems with the App.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Read faster... even if it's just by avoiding distractions.

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


You can get Flash Reader here and support for the App here.


Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Daily Insist - App Review



Habits are made for changing... sometimes.

There are bad habits that you want to get rid of, and good ones that you wish to adopt.

This App will help you in the latter case, and with a bit of lateral thinking, in the former as well.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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The activity is called a 'Round' in this App.

You enter what it is you wish to do, and for how many days (7/14/21).

You can, optionally, enter a daily alarm to do whatever it is that you wish to do (change).

Once you have completed the activity for the day, press 'DONE TODAY' and the App will count down the number of days left in your cycle.

Cost
The App costs $1.

Indispensability
Most of us need a prop to change (bad) habits; this could be the one for you.

Dependability
Daily Insist is an iPhone App which works in 1x and 2x modes on an iPad. It is straightforward and simply works.

Security
This is a standalone App and no issues were detected.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Force yourself to change.

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


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


Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Date & Time Calculator (9 in1) - App Review



Date and time calculations can be a little tricky. This App takes the effort out of the 'problem', and encourages you to work out things you probably wouldn't have bothered to do otherwise.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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There is a choice of type of calculation covering:

Time Difference (between two points)
Date Range (from a starting point, add/subtract years/months/days/hours/minutes/seconds)
Work Days (between 2 dates; gives you the answer, together with the number of each days of the week)
Add/Subtract Time (Enter two points in years/months/days/hours/minutes/seconds and choose add or subtract)
Multiply/Divide Time (Enter in years/months/days/hours/minutes/seconds and choose multiply or divide)
Time Converter (Enter in years/months/days/hours/minutes/seconds and get the value in decimal years)
Age Calculator (Enter the date and get the answer in years/months days)
Time Travel (Enter the distance and speed to get the result in hours/minutes/seconds)
Time Zones (Enter the date and time and the two time zones)

Cost
The App is a modest $1.

Indispensability
This App cannot really be seen as indispensable but, it is useful and fun.

Dependability
The App seems to work fine, although the Work days calculation (unsurprisingly) doesn't take into account public holidays.

Security
There are no apparent issues as this is a standalone App.

ACIDS Test Rating:

So how old are you?

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


You can get Date & Time Calculator (9 in1) here and support for the App here.


Thursday, 27 November 2014

RememberTheOil - App Review



How do you keep track of car servicing, consumption and other bits?
Sheets of paper
Excel spreadsheet (in my case, guilty as charged)
Don't bother
A really neat App
If this is the sort of information you value, you will do one of the above... excepting 'don't bother'.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
Some Apps are so beautifully designed that they make you want to use them; 'RememberTheOil' is a case in point.
You start by adding a vehicle, using an icon that looks very much like a starter button; it really sets you up for what to expect. Apart from entering the basic vehicle data (name, mileage, registration number (must be unique), and units), it is also the opportunity to choose between various types of reminders. These can be anything between a single reminder as you take your car to a dealer to have the required work carried out, or you can set a multitude of individual prompts.
You can (indeed, should) enter the mileage (or trip distance) each time you fill up with fuel. This will enable the App to track your consumption... often a gauge (ouch) of impending problems.
Additionally, you can set metric or imperial units, as well as the consumption reporting system.

Cost
The App costs $3.

Indispensability
If you don't look after your vehicle(s), upon your head be it.

Dependability
The App really is a pleasure to use. If one wants to be hypercritical, it could be said that the decimal point on the input screen is small that it could be mistaken for a speck of dust.

Security
You can backup to iCloud and Dropbox.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Love your car, love the App.

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


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


Friday, 21 November 2014

SnapEntry - App Review



Do you use Evernote?

If 'yes', then, you owe it to yourself to take a look at SnapEntry.

If 'no', then, where on earth (or in the cloud) do you keep your disjointed information?

Now for the ACIDS test:

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The first thing you need to do is allow SnapEntry access to your Evernote account.
As soon as that is done, you have a blank page on which to write.
At any time you can choose which Evernote to save the document to (bottom left), and add tags (top right, or top right of the keyboard).
The App also supports various paper types and allows photographs to be entered.
The really great thing is that the interface is so clean and uncluttered; just what you need for entering notes.

Cost
The App costs $3.

Indispensability
If you don't particularly like the Evernote App and are an avid Evernote user, then this App is a must.

Dependability
The App creates notes but cannot edit existing notes from Evernote.

Security
The App can create notes in your Evernote account... and this is a good thing, in this instance. You can post directly to Twitter and Facebook; great but, beware.
The App has password protection which is limited to 4 characters.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Another way to enter Evernote information.

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


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


Monday, 17 November 2014

SuperFoodsRx - App Review



You are what you eat, or so the saying goes.

What is undeniable is that different foods act differently on you.

This App points you in the right direction.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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The App has an easy to use first page that clearly explains what constitutes a SuperFood, and reassuringly informs you that, not only are they, usually, readily available in your local market, but also that alternatives (Sidekicks) are available.

There is then a listing of basic items, ranging from Apples to Wild Salmon (in alphabetical order). Choosing any one of the items brings up an overview, as well as further information on benefits, detailed nutrients contained, together with the 'Sidekicks'.

There is a separate icon which will give you access to many detailed recipes.

Cost
The App is free.

Indispensability
Knowing what you are eating should be of concern to you, and being able to easily 'explore' super foods is an advantage.

Dependability
The work is really a database so it works very well. One small criticism is that there is no direct between the individual superfoods and the recipes; this would make it easier to find appropriate concoctions containing your chosen superfood(s).

Security
This is a standalone App and, as such, presents no issues.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Here's an App for you to get your teeth into!

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


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


Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Audiko Ringtones PRO - App Review



Although your iOS device comes with a selection of ring tones, you can never have too many.

It has always been possible to convert and sound file into a ring tone but, it was a little tedious.

Drum roll... and enter 'Audiko Ringtones PRO'.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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The first thing you need to do is register, or log-in with Facebook (afterwards you can use the e-mail address used for registration).

Once you've got that chore out of the way you are invited to Create Ring tone, and are then presented with a list of the songs on your iOS device. Use the handles to set a beginning and an end and opt to use (or not), fade in and/or out. Next press to create your new ring tone.

The next part is getting the ring tone onto your iPhone.

You need to connect your iPhone to iTunes and ensure that under Edit/Preferences/General 'Tones' has a tick next to it (if it doesn't, you know what to do!). Now select your iPhone in iTunes and click on Apps and then scroll to the bottom of the screen until you see File Sharing and then pick 'Audiko Pro'. The tones that you created earlier will appear and just need saving to your PC (select and save). The last step (with iTunes) is to go (still with your iPhone selected) and choose Tones; from there just tick the ones you want synchronised to your iPhone.

Now it's back to your iPhone and go to each contact for whom you want to personalise the ring tone and edit their record. You can of course also set the default in Settings/Sounds/Ring tone.

Cost
The App is an inexpensive $1.

Indispensability
It can be very useful to recognise a caller by the ring tone, especially when you don't want to be (overly) distracted.

Dependability
It is still a bit of effort to create a new tone but, once done, it works perfectly.

Security
Tones can be shared via Twitter; do not fall foul of copyright laws. You can, of course, also use your voice or sounds you create.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Audibly personalise your incoming calls

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


You can get Audiko Ringtones PRO here and support for the App here.


Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Laser Level for Walls and Surfaces - App Review



How to you make sure something is absolutely level?

This App could be what you are looking for.

Now for the ACIDS test:

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The first thing you need to do is calibrate your iPhone. This involves placing the iPhone on a level surface and then rotating it. Although this is easy to do, it does presuppose that you have a level surface (perhaps you should seek the help of a traditional spirit level for this step).

Once this is done, you are ready to start using the device.

There are two ways to use it; they both rely on a grid where the lines change from red (not level) to green (level).

One is to place your iPhone on the item that you want to check. The problem with this is the short length of the iPhone so the accuracy is not brilliant. The other is to get someone to help you; one person attempts to place whatever object needs to be level/perpendicular, and the other looks at the iPhone screen.

Cost
The App costs $1 and also and funded by advertisements that appear occasionally.

Indispensability
It's a nice tool as it is to hand, as you probably have an iOS device with you all the time.

Dependability
The accuracy is not on a par with a traditional spirit level.

Security
This is a standalone App and, as such, presents no issues.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Doesn't replace a spirit level.

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


You can get Laser Level for Walls and Surfaces here and support for the App here.


Thursday, 30 October 2014

Shtickers - App Review



So what am I doing reviewing this App?

The truth is that the name intrigued me; curiosity aroused, I had to look further.

The publisher asks the question : "Have you ever wanted to use stickers... but in your iMessage conversations?".

Now for the ACIDS test:

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Before you start, you need to ensure that MMS is enabled on your iOS device. To do this, simply go to Settings/Messages/MMS Messaging/On.

The App is straightforward; press Begin to get started.

The very bottom of the screen contains 8 icons which represent individual groups of 10 'Shtickers'. Choose the group, then chose the 'Shticker' and then press Send.

This will bring up your messaging service, where the 'Shticker' has been inserted. You can add text before, or after, the 'Shticker'.

That's all there is to it.

Cost
The App is free but, you will be sending each message as an MMS, which could well incur charges with your mobile operator.

Indispensability
I'll let you be the judge.

Dependability
The App works but you can only send one 'Shticker' per message.

Security
The App is self-contained so there are no issues.

ACIDS Test Rating:

A bit of a sledgehammer to crack a nut.

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


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