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Monday, 29 December 2014

QuickReader - App Review



Do you want to read faster?

This is an App that aims to train you to do just that.

The App comes complete with many and varied books, and you can add anything you want in e-Pub format (the excellent Calibre will show you how).

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
The home screen for the App is very clear and contains only five buttons (don't be disappointed, they each pack quite a punch).

Normal Reading
Pick a book and just start reading from any given place in the book.

Speed Reading
The default setting is 300 words per minute with 6 Stops per Line. Each word will be highlighted at the prescribed speed.

Speed Test
Start reading any page of any book, and as many pages as you want then, tap the screen to find out your equivalent words per minute, including estimates on when you would finish the chapter and book.

Demo Video
No surprises here, although one supposes that the Speed Reading button has replaced Guided Reading.

Settings
This is where you can really personalise the App for you. The settings include speed (words per minute), colour of highlighter, font (type and size), colours (scheme, text, and page).

Cost
The App costs $5... but remember all those books that are included.

Indispensability
If you believe that books are indispensable then, I suggest you give this App a try. If you don't want to risk $5, there is a free 'Lite' version which will allow you to try it out.

The limitation is that you cannot download DRM encoded books but, there is masses out there that is not.

Dependability
The only (slight) criticism is that when testing yourself for speed, tapping the screen does not always work.

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

ACIDS Test Rating:

Kindle Killer?

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


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


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:

Aesthetics
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:

Aesthetics
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:

Aesthetics
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:

Aesthetics
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:

Aesthetics
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:

Aesthetics
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:

Aesthetics
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.


Monday, 20 October 2014

Pocket Binder - App Review



Do you have a bulging wallet, replete not with cash but multiple store cards and vouchers?

This App allows you to replace them all and never forget one.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
Whether it's a loyalty card, or a voucher that you want to store, the process is very nearly the same.

Pick Coupons or Cards, then press the +.

You now enter the card name, store name, and category, or product/store, coupon type, and amount off.

Having done that you scan (photograph) the bar code. The number is quickly displayed on the screen for you to confirm.

In addition you can put expiry dates for coupons (and then also choose to have them automatically deleted when they lapse. You can pretty things up by adding colours and pictures. Very usefully you can have locations for the cards/coupons, so as not to miss an opportunity.

Cost
The App costs $2.

Indispensability
As far as store and other loyalty cards are concerned, this App is better than the real thing (you (nearly) always have your iPhone with you).

Coupons/Vouchers can be a bit more complicated as some stores want to keep the voucher... and I guess you don't want to give up your iPhone.

Dependability
The App works perfectly... with the proviso mentioned before of antediluvian retailers who like to chop down trees.

Security
You can enable iCloud synchronisation; the usual double-edged sword.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Travel light(er).

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


You can get Pocket Binder here and support for the App here.


Enpass - App Review



Passwords... love them, hate them. they're everywhere.

There are two main ways in which people tend to deal with passwords: use the same one everywhere, or (somehow) randomly generate them.

The former option is extremely unsafe, and the second needs careful thought about how to manage the situation.

The Enpass App is an attempt at giving you the best of both worlds (in a way).

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
The App starts off by asking you for a master password. This is the key (in more senses than one) that will protect you so, it needs to be 'complicated' but memorable. The good news is that you can mix upper and lower case, as well as numbers and special characters.

You must remember this password or you will no longer have access.

You can now start entering items under various categories:

Computer
Credit card
Finance
License
Login
Miscellaneous
Password
Secure note (this is a nice extra touch)
Travel

Each one of these then asks for the relevant information to attach to the record, as well as the ability to add new fields. The really clever bit if the 'key' icon which allows the system to generate a password where you set the length, number of digits, symbols, and uppercase.

Once you have finished you can easily find the items, either within their categories or alphabetically.

Cost
The App costs $10 which is not cheap but, security hasn't really got a cost and, the desktop version is free.

Indispensability
You need secure passwords: fact. This is a straightforward way of both generating and storing them.

Dependability
The App is very intuitive to use and reliable.

Security
This is really what this App is about. Your information is stored on your device and not in the cloud. In my opinion this is a definite advantage.

The developers clearly take your security seriously your data is encrypted using AES-256 and your master password with PBKDF2 (Password-Based Key Derivation Function).

ACIDS Test Rating:

You know you need security...

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


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


Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Dooo - App Review



How do you to Dooo?... or, if you prefer, how do you keep track of your todo list, and more importantly, enter information.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
'Normal' todo lists are exactly that, lists.

This App differentiates itself by the way one enters the information. Some people work on pictures (photographs), some on locations (because it reminds them of where), and some on rough sketches. The truth is that we probably all work on these aspects, at some time.

This is where Dooo comes in. You can snap a photograph, add an image from your store, sketch anything you want, or automatically enter your current location, as well as add voice (very useful if you are on the move). You then add a title to this information and turn it into a task, together with an optional reminder.

It is very easy to use and extremely versatile.

Cost
The App is free and there is an in App purchase for additional colour themes.

Indispensability
A Todo list is indispensable; this one has a different way of doing things which might just be exactly what less 'organised' people are looking for.

Dependability
The App has an irritating feature of turning the upper case key on, so that it has to be disabled for every keystroke that you want to appear in lower case.

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

ACIDS Test Rating:

If you don't like Todo lists, give Dooo a try.

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


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


Wednesday, 8 October 2014

City Maps 2Go Pro - App Review



The thing about traditional (paper) town guides is that you either have them, or you don't. If you forgot to pack it then, you either need to get another one, or get some other means of access to information.

Electronic maps are great but often rely on downloading information, as you go. This is acceptable if you have an unlimited download account but can be prohibitively expensive when you ate out of your home territory... which is when you are most likely to require such information.

Enter 'City Maps 2Go Pro', where you download the information and then have it stored in your iOS device.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
The first thing to do is download a location that interests you.

When you download, you are given the option of including, or not, additional articles and pictures which will enhance the experience but use up memory; your choice.

You can then search the map in a variety of ways, such as entering text, accessing the globe to see a listing of top places. You can easily find street names, public transport, restaurants and hotels (including reviews). You can then add photos or notes.

There is a very useful 'locate me' button which toggles between showing where you are (assuming you are within the map confines) and centring the map, viewing direction, and North up.

You can create lists of places to visit and store these for when you reach your destination, as well as storing them in the 'Ulmon Hub'. An added bonus of using this is seeing the opinions of others, as well as sharing yours.

Cost
The App costs $3, which is dramatically more than a library full of travel guides. There is also a limited free version for you to test.

Indispensability
Sometimes the best part of a trip is the planning; this App adds to that experience.

Dependability
When downloading a location, it is easiest to type the name, as access via the initial letter doesn't seem to function correctly.

Although the individual maps are comprehensive, there is always a little place that the locals will know that is not listed.

Security
The Ulmon cloud is the usual double-edged sword of added back-up but also, potential, unauthorised use. Apart from the unlikely (but possible) event of someone hacking into your account and altering data, the consequential risks should be remote.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Added enjoyment for your trip.

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


You can get City Maps 2Go Pro here and support for the App here.


Thursday, 2 October 2014

Time.is - App Review



This is an App to display the correct time in any given time zone.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
Tapping the screen once cycles between set-up and use; very simple.

The settings (reached by tapping the screen) allow you to set the following parameters:

Language, time format (24 hour, a.m./p.m.), date format (4 options), first day of the week (Saturday, Sunday, Monday), font (choice of 2), colours (positive or negative, as well as the option to change after sunset), home location, and synchronisation information (shown or not, as well as choosing to only connect via wi-fi).

Alarms, multiple locations (allows easy conversion between different time zones) can also be set, as well as calculating time lapses.

Cost
This is a very reasonably priced $1.

Indispensability
It's been a while since updating the time on iOS devices has been an issue but, neatly showing more than one time zone is a bonus. You can also convince yourself of the current time by pointing your browser to one of the myriad of time services.

Dependability
The time is accurate.

This is an iPad App requiring iOS 6 or later.

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

ACIDS Test Rating:

Atomic time.

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


You can get Time.is here and support for the App here.


Friday, 26 September 2014

Classic Note - App Review



Were you around when the Mac(intosh) was first launched?

Do you remember the excitement at a radically different PC (and that expression had then been hijacked by Microsoft and IBM)?

This is a note App for you nostalgia buffs.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
This is very much a tongue-in-cheek App, and takes you back 30 years.

The main part is the note taking part which is accessed with the New button. Notes can be saved in a list and edited, and that's about it.

The Tools menu gives you access to three items.

Calculator
This is as simple as it was on the original Macintosh (the one with a smiley face, 3.5" 'floppy' drive, and the different look).

Fortune
An uplifting phrase is displayed

Wrangler
This gives you access to a game titled 'Catch the Dogcow'; I haven't got the faintest idea of what it does.



Cost
The App costs $1; an inexpensive bit of nostalgia.

Indispensability
Although using an App to take notes in some way is bound to be an every day occurrence, this is perhaps somewhat limited.

Dependability
The App works as expected... with the exception of the game, which is only for clever people.

Security
The lack of connectivity 30 years ago made security of little concern. This App replicated that appreciation as well.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Nostalgia ain't what it used to be....

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


You can get Classic Note here and support for the App here.


Monday, 22 September 2014

Pickle - App Review



Don't you wish there were an easy way to copy and store (in a logical manner), all those images that you see in your daily surfing?

Pickle does just that.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
Once you have downloaded the App, you don't start copying from within the App... because the image you want to 'pinch' is in Safari.

So, open Safari and, as soon as you see an image you like, put your finger on it and hold. You will receive the option to 'Copy' (amongst others); choose this. You should now get a notification "Pickle: Copying Success".

So now, you can easily copy those images; the next part is in getting them organised. All you need to is go to Pickle and scroll to the bottom of the folder list on the left and press the +; now enter a folder name and pick a colour. Your images are on the right of the screen and can be dropped into the selected (make sure it is selected first, indicated by the coloured rectangle to the left of the folder).

You can also add photographs, either from your camera roll, or from within the App.

You now have a library of images.

Cost
The App costs $3.

There are a few additional patterns for your folders (all fairly basic really); some are included, and some can only be obtained with a like on Facebook, or mention on Twitter. I'm not sure this is really appropriate for a paid App.

Indispensability
This is a simple way of ordering images; if that's what you need then, this is a straightforward way of achieving it.

Dependability
The App works with all iOS devices running iOS 6.0, or later.

The iPad version display is either iPhone screen size or you can use the 2X button to fill the screen.

Security
This is a self-contained App with Dropbox synchronisation and four digit pass code (optional).

ACIDS Test Rating:

A useful addition to the standard iOS 'Photos' App.

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


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


Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Quotes Folder - App Review



I wish I'd said that... you know those remarks that make you think, smile, react.

This App gives you tonnes of them.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
There are a number of ways to use the App:

Random - tap to get a quotation

Daily - receive a timely quotation, at a time of your choice

Personal - add your own favourite citation.

You can set font sizes, colours, language (English, French, German, Italian, or Spanish).

The i button takes you directly to the Wikipedia page of the author.

You can easily add any phrase to your favourites.

The App makes itself all the more enjoyable due to its clean lines.

Cost
This represents a huge amount of information for a mere $1.

Indispensability
It's not so much that you 'have to have' the App, just that life is more enjoyable with it... and you will learn lots of facts, just by 'being tempted' to take a look.

Dependability
The App works, as expected.

Security
You can share content via Facebook and Twitter, as well as Email and message.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Quotations with background.

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


You can get Quotes Folder here and support for the App here.


Wednesday, 10 September 2014

WriteRight - App Review



When it comes to writing, the world seems to be split into three types of people:
1. I don't care about punctuation, grammar (isn't that one of my parent's mothers anyway), as long as people understand.
2. There are rules to writing and these need to be adhered to (oops, almost ending a sentence with a preposition); anything else is lackadaisical.
3. I can't read anyway, so who gives a (enter your favourite phrase).
It you fall into the middle category, you are going to love this App.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
To call WriteRight a text editor could well be the understatement of the digital age (well, nearly).
When you first open the App you are asked to choose between Spanish and English (US), in order to get the best out of the App. Don't be concerned about the US tag, it seems to work perfectly in UK English as well.
One of the particularly appealing aspects of the App is that you have plenty of space to type, with excellent spacing.
Just above the keyboard are some shortcuts to commonly used punctuation marks, in particular those that require an opening and closing (like this).
Where things get clever is that tapping any word will NOT ONLY bring up the usual iOS niceties but also synonyms and antonyms. This makes writing easier as inspiration is never far... as long as you know what you want to write about.
Although there are some buttons to allow you to preview your text in various formats, what you are actually saving is straight text. This has the advantage that, being bereft of formatting, you can beautify your text in whatever editor you prefer.
The App actually uses Markdown so that your text can easily become HTML code (and you can also be blissfully unaware that this is happening in the background).
Your work can be saved in iCloud, as well as the ubiquitous Dropbox.

Cost
The App costs $3 and is worth every penny.

Indispensability
If you care about, and take care with, what you write, this App will help you.

Dependability
The only thing that doesn't work perfectly is that, when searching for an antonym, if the word is not in the App dictionary, you get the message '... word you are searching is a word in Spanish...'.

The App seems to deal with carriage returns in a quirky way. This means that opening your notes in Notepad will result in sentences being contiguous.

Security
There are no issues with the App, just the usual proviso about iCloud and Dropbox.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Enables you to concentrate on content and let presentation take care of itself.

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


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


Thursday, 4 September 2014

Superbars - App Review



Your iOS device allows for a certain amount of personalisation but, one could always have more.

This App gives you some added control over the look of your home screen.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
The first thing to do (and it is clearly stated on the instructions) is to go to your iOS Settings/General/Accessibility and turn 'on' the reduce motion switch.

You are now shown 23 different patterns; pitch any one of these fir your Home and/or Lock screens.

It is then time to personalise the experience. A slider allows you to alter the solid colour and the transparency, first the background, then the status bar, and finally the dock colour.

You need to give the App access to your photos to enable your first 'masterpiece' to be saved. Once this is done, accessing your photos and saving the wallpaper in the usual way will give you a more personalised home screen.

Cost
The App cost $3.

Indispensability
This is an App to improve your user experience, it can't really be described as indispensable.

Dependability
Don't be put off by the instruction to change some settings; it is very straightforward.

Security
The App is self contained and the access to your photos is only so that your backgrounds can be saved.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Personalised home screen (other than a photograph)

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


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


Friday, 29 August 2014

Best Decision - App Review



Making decisions can be an emotive subject.

This App enables you to reach objective decisions, taking a step by step approach.

Now for the ACIDS test:

Aesthetics
Although the App is intuitive, there is a 5 screen tutorial that will help you get started. Some examples are also there for you to play with.

The first thing, once you want to start the process, is to press the '+' and write in the potential outcomes/options. Taking a purchasing decision as an example, this would be the different items that interest you.

Having done this, you need to enter the criteria on which you will base your decision, as well as the weighting for each (this is a value between 1 (low) and 5 (high)).

Once you have completed that step, touching Criteria will bring up a screen on which each of your options, with each of the criteria is listed. You need to score these for importance (1-5) and each is handily started with a medium rating of 3 to make entry quicker (statistically).

As soon as you have completed the process, touching Verdict will bring up the result, showing the points gained in absolute terms, as well as percentage terms, for all your options.

If the answer doesn't suit you, or if you just thought of an alternative, you can easily go back, add or delete parameters, as well as alter scores (that is known as cheating).


Cost
The App costs $2.

Indispensability
This is a straightforward way to take the emotion out of decision making; you be the judge of indispensability.

Dependability
The App works well and is very clear. It is designed for the iPhone screen size but works in 1x and 2x modes on an iPad.

Security
The App is self-contained, so no concerns on this front.

ACIDS Test Rating:

Turn shades of grey into black and white!

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


You can get Best Decision here and support for the App here.