Wednesday, April 9, 2014

thing the third | utilities

redlaser iconI downloaded and scanned a few things using RedLaser, but it doesn't immediately strike me as an app that I'll come back to. I don't do a lot of online shopping or pay attention to QR codes, so I expect I'll likely forget about it.

Google searchGoogle Search is an app that I did already have on my phone but rarely use. When I want to search the web I just launch Safari and begin typing keywords. The times I do occasionally launch Google Search is to access Google Drive. I tested the Google Goggles feature at my desk at work, but it didn't recognize much in the immediate environment. However, one of the two things it did recognize, I'm amused to note, was the Flying Spaghetti Monster logo. I just thought of a practical use I might have for it -- my father has hanging in his home a painting for which we know neither the title nor artist. Next time I visit, I'll see if Google Goggles knows what it is!

standappI next downloaded StandApp, which is an app designed to get you moving around more throughout the day if you have a desk job. Although I have a desk, I'm rarely sitting at it for more than 30 minutes at a stretch, so I think I'm already doing a pretty decent job of not remaining sedentary for hours on end. I'm somewhat intrigued by the exercise prompts, but not sure how my employer would feel if I were to spend 5 minutes of every hour exercising. And although it might be to my health benefit, I would not necessarily be willing to sacrifice the opportunity to relax during my regular paid breaks in order to exercise. I'll keep it in mind in the event that I ever do ever find myself sitting too long.

ihome sleepiHome Sleep is an app meant to take the place of an alarm clock. In addition, it can provide a weather forecast and music, as well as record sleep statistics. Since the built-in iPhone clock app meets my current alarm needs and playing music would actually prevent me from sleeping, I don't think this will be a keeper. I'm intrigued by the notion of sleep statistics, but I think if I really wanted to pursue that aspect I'd instead find one of the apps on the market that go one step further and record your breathing and sleep patterns.

wifi finderWi-Fi Finder was an app that I installed last year in preparation for a vacation in Europe when I knew I'd have no phone service other than Wi-Fi. In my situation, had I been able to spend the required time researching where I'd be every hour of every day, it might have come in handy. In practical terms, though, you can't search for Wi-Fi if you don't already have an internet connection. I can see the appeal of this app, however, to laptop users who are using their phone to scout out a good spot to get some work done. My current phone plan has unlimited data, so I'm usually not desperate to find Wi-Fi when I'm out and about.

I didn't download and try any of the additional browsers. I'm satisfied with Safari for now.

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