Sunday, February 5, 2012
A longtime Shazam user tries another music app to find songs — and loves it.
Have you ever been in a store or a bar and wondered what exactly is that song coming over the speaker system? In the past, I've solved that problem with Shazam, a mobile app that captures a bit of audio, then spools up the song's title — and the opportunity to buy a copy on iTunes. That's all been well and good, but I've been frustrated with Shazam lately. (Sometimes it take too long to load, or isn't as accuarate as I need it to be.) So I broke my fidelity and started seeing other music indentification apps. My favorite, by far, has been MusicID (99 cents). Not only does it return results fast, as it did when recognizing The Black Crowes' "Ballad of Urgency," but it also provided lyrics, a band biography and recommendations for similar …
Saturday, January 7, 2012
Aggregating the best of deal sites, the Yipit mobile app lets you find deals near you.
With the huge boom in deal sites led by Groupon and LivingSocial, it was only a matter of time until someone started aggregating all the coupons and deals in one place. The Yipit mobile app offers a clever, interactive solution. Earlier: Finding the Best Mobile Apps for Your Needs Not only can you sign up for Yipit like any other deal service, but you can also search by category and location. Taking advantage of the iPhone's "Where am I now?" functionality, Yipit can show daily deals near you. The rub for suburbanites: Deals are much more dense the closer you get to the city. (See the slideshow for examples.) Still, it's worth it. Yipit aggregates 802 daily coupon sites, with more coming online. (Patch has its own Patch Deals, and Amazon …
Sunday, December 25, 2011
Tool offers help finding knitting supplies far from home.
- THE NEIGHBORHOOD FILES
- Emily Stone
Sunday, December 25, 2011
I’m spending the holiday weekend in Ohio with my in-laws. Which means 14 hours of round-trip driving. Which, for me, means a whole lot of time to knit in the car. Was it overkill to throw three half-finished projects in my knitting bag? Probably. But better safe than sorry, for a knitter. And with that mantra in mind, I decided to check out the Knitting and Yarn Shop Locator app. Because what if I arrived in Ohio and forgot my size 3 circular needles or grabbed the wrong size crochet hook? The horror! The app, which costs $2.99, lets you type in a location or opt to use your phone’s GPS device to tell you where the nearest knit shops are. Much like Yelp, it links to the store’s website, phone and email, and can get you directions there. …
Sunday, November 13, 2011
Business Card Reader eliminates that pesky step of typing information into your phone.
In this job, by the end of the week, I collect a ton of business cards. In fact, it's not unheard of for me to put on jackets I haven't worn in awhile to find business cards in the breast pocket and do one of those Homer Simpson forehead slaps—doh! When I first started this column, the folks at SHAPE Services suggested I try their app: Business Card Reader ($4.99), which will take a photo of said card and convert it to the fields in your iPhone address book. Perfect! I thought. Well, near perfect. I've been using this app for a few weeks now, trying to convert business cards to contact files. Mostly, it's been a success. Previously: Forget Watches—Try An App For Running I recently met Kathryn Auerbach at an event for Hacks/Hackers—a group …
Monday, October 3, 2011
This week, the App Hunter delves into the pros and cons of one photo app, the Pano.
Last week, I collected a roundup of photo apps – but did not nearly get to test all the cool photography-related apps I wanted. So, I devoted this week to Pano ($1.99), an app for the iPhone and Android that builds a string of photos into a detailed panorama. In short: There's a lot to love. Developed by Debacle Software, Pano is simple, intuitive and almost disaster-proof, in terms of its user experience. Related: App Hunter Archive Now, there are a few drawbacks. Unlike other programs, you cannot go back and stitch together photos taken outside the app to create a panorama. Instead, you have take all the photos in succession, lining them up one after the other. When I first tried out Pano, the app wanted to stack the photos vertically …
Sunday, September 18, 2011
Discover our great state while on the go.
I’m on the road this week, giving a speech about Patch in Champaign-Urbana, so I thought this would be an excellent chance to try out Enjoy Illinois, the official app of the Illinois Department of Tourism. Right now, as I type this from the Illini Union, this free app tells me that nearby “Top Attractions” include the Tanger Outlet Center (22.44 miles away) and the Kickapoo State Park (26.10 miles away). So, if I want to hike in brand-new surplus sneakers, I’m set. It also lists more than 25 restaurants and hotels within a mile radius. The app allows me to filter and refresh these results by type (shopping, sports, nightlife, etc). Pretty nifty. Developed by Evanston-based SIM Partners, this free app is a close sibling to the Department of…
Monday, September 12, 2011
App allows you to keep your rewards card, frequent flyer and library card numbers in your iPhone and off your key ring.
I used to have a huge key ring. Huge. Not only did it have keys—but also a ton of rewards cards, those little bar-coded plastic money savers, bulking up my key ring. Putting it in my pocket was impossible. So, when I got an iPhone, one of the first apps I downloaded was CardStar. The app allows a user to keep his/her loyalty numbers in one place with an interactive library of bar codes that can be scanned at checkout. Related: Redbox App Lets You Cut in Line Without Getting Punched Goodbye unwieldy key ring. Not only that, but I started using it for off-label uses, like storing my Society of Professional Journalists and library card info. In the two years I’ve been using it, the app caught up to these loopholes and added functions for …