Ten Thumbs Typing Tutor is a touch-typing tutorial that uses fun games, adaptive lessons, iTunes accompaniment, and a goofy Viking character to help make learning to type more fun. This app takes a holistic approach to typing instruction, starting with basic good habits (such as how to sit for maximum comfort and efficiency) and following with timed lessons that adapt on the fly to give you more practice with any problem areas. Ten Thumbs Typing Tutor provides a lot of feedback on your progress, and two different games (Brick Factory, in which you build the Eiffel Tower, and Safari Park, … Read more
My favorite game so far for the iPhone just got even better and it's definitely worthy of its own Download blog post. To be clear, this is not my iPhone apps of the week post which will appear on Friday as usual. It's just an update I think all players of this game should know about.
SlotZ Racer ($2.99) just received a free major update and it is definitely a must have for fans of this slot-racing simulator. The game was already a steal at the $2.99 price tag, featuring excellent graphics, different racing modes to … Read more
Good news, everyone. And by everyone, I mean those who are trendy and single. Valentine's Day is right around the corner, and we're here to help you speed up that dating process.
You'll need to be an owner of either an iPhone or an iPod Touch, though. Thus, the aforementioned "trendy" notion.
Online speed dating service SpeedDate announced on Monday the availability of its free iPhone application. No more excuses. You can now find a match anywhere. Sort of.
The app allows access to SpeedDate members' profiles, which you can connect to by sending a "wink" or a quick "flirt." It also allows for creating a new profile if you are not already a member. You won't be able do much else, however, such as sending an e-mail to a member.
I tried the app on my iPhone 3G and got my profile up and running within a minute. After that, the application asked for my location and went straight to the "SpeedDate" tab, where it showed me a list in slide-show style of singles in my area between the ages of 18 to 99.
After narrowing the age range, I was surprised by the number of singles available in my vicinity. Unfortunately, the application doesn't allow for filtering by any other criteria, such as height, body type, or hair color. I couldn't put any of the matches into a "favorite" list either. And if I turned the application off, I needed to go through the same process again when I turned it back on. If I'm lucky, I'll be able to find the same person again.… Read more
I scout several Web sites every week for new iPhone applications to try to find what I think are the most useful (or the most fun) for everyone who reads this column. A couple of weeks ago, I featured a budgeting application that I thought had some nice features, but a user quickly pointed me in the direction of something much better.
Mint.com (Free) is an excellent money management tool that automatically syncs up with your accounts to help you follow a budget on your iPhone. The interface is well designed, letting you quickly navigate several accounts, track spending, … Read more
Infinitely cooler and more practical than the still-respected iTunes Remote is Air Mouse for iPhone 1.5 ($6). Why? You can play music and videos from any media player, for starters, not just from Apple's pet player.
In fact, Air Mouse gives you the reins to the keyboard and mouse, with new screens in this version that are tailored to commanding the Web browser, media players, and function keys. Then there are the two methods for wielding your iPhone's remote mouse, and new support for landscape mode.
In a word, it's awesome, and it works (with the … Read more
Multitouch gestures on the iPhone are simple and really easy to use. Mobile touch-screen devices that don't have it, however, can make Web browsing a harrowing experience. Enter Linja Zax, a new project that's trying to give users an easy way to zoom in and out of Web pages (and potentially other UI elements) with one finger only.
Similar to the "wax on, wax off" mantra of Mr. Miyagi from The Karate Kid, this simply involves moving your finger in a circular motion. Going clockwise zooms in, while counterclockwise zooms you back out. In the demo, … Read more
The US Patent Office has, as of January 20, 2009 awarded Apple, Inc. patent number 7,479,949, which is titled "Touch screen device, method, and graphical user interface for determining commands by applying heuristics". The patent covers the multi-touch and all its gestures (swipe, pinch, rotation, etc.) that are used on the Apple iPhone and was originally filed in September 2007.
A portion of the patent reads:
"A computer-implemented method for use in conjunction with a computing device with a touch screen display comprises: detecting one or more finger contacts with the touch screen display, applying … Read more
From the "how in the hell do I get this guy's job?" corner of the tubes comes an interesting video from Engadget.
In it, a guy dressed in a white lab coat takes out his frustrations on a Vissumo touch-screen monitor using a 9mm. There are days I wish this was my job. I just need to get CNET to build a firing range, then convince them to let me walk around the office with a 9. Hmmm, you know, thinking about it, I don't see this happening anytime soon.
Check below for the video. One … Read more
Despite a multimillion-dollar advertising campaign, the new BlackBerry Storm has gotten off to a shaky start, according to The Wall Street Journal.
The Storm, which is Research In Motion's first touch-screen device, was supposed to be Verizon Wireless's iPhone killer. Verizon is the exclusive carrier for the Storm. Apple's iPhone is sold exclusively by AT&T. Verizon and RIM had supposedly been working on the device even before AT&T launched the original iPhone two and a half years ago.
The Storm launched in November, in time for the holiday-shopping season. And while it sold well initially with about 500,000 shipping the first month, the Journal reports that many customers who bought the device are complaining of buggy software and hardware glitches.
Specifically, consumers say that the software used to type on the touch screen, which requires you to press down on the face of the phone, is sluggish. I have used the device on and off since it was launched November 21, and I'd agree that it is clunky.
Other examples: the accelerometer that senses and changes the view on the screen when it's turned on its side is slow. And sometimes the "sure press" screen is difficult to use because it registers the wrong character.
Verizon and RIM rushed the device to market, perhaps before it was really ready, according to the Journal article. The newspaper notes that Jim Balsillie, RIM's co-CEO said the companies reached the Black Friday deadline "by the skin of their teeth," after they had missed a planned October debut. … Read more
iShoot Lite is a free, turn-based artillery game in which two to four tanks--controlled by human players or computer AIs--duke it out with a variety of destructive weapons. As with similar games, your accuracy is determined by the angle and power of each shot (which you determine with easy touchscreen controls), but iShoot Lite adds a couple of interesting twists: the terrain is constantly getting destroyed, changing the positions of the battling tanks, and each round you can buy and sell different weapons with different effects, everything from Mega Mortars to Stinger Missiles and Tactical Nukes.
Unfortunately, in this free … Read more