Category Archives: App Review

app talk: Cloud On

Let’s face it, Apple and Microsoft are competing to add you as a customer and they don’t always play nice together. Like many people I currently own an iPhone and use it as my primary form of communication (i.e. email, texts, phone calls). While the iPhone is a strong product it does have some limitations when it comes to Microsoft products like Excel, Word and PowerPoint. These products have become the ‘must have’ tools for most businesses and users need a way to access/use these files.

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CloudOn is an app that allows the user to create, review and edit Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents from your iPad or iPhone.  The app creator boasts “100% compatibility with Office files…” without fear of problems. CloudOn also allows you to access and save files from your favorite storage provider such as Dropbox, Google Drive, and SkyDrive among others. Users have the ability to open almost any file type on their Apple device, including: Microsoft Office®, Adobe Acrobat®, DOC, DOCX, XLS, XLSX, PPT, PPTX, PDF, JPG, PNG, and GIF.

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While I don’t always have access to a computer my phone is always in my pocket. There are times a document must be updated and having this app will make that easy to do. I highly recommend this app to anyone that owns an iPhone or iPad.

app talk: Follow the Sun

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Location photography or shooting video? Looking to buy a house? Want to plant a garden or shade tree, install solar panels or find the best seat at an outdoor concert? Would you like tented Reality Viewer is one of the most indispensable apps you may ever find.o find the perfect sunset while on vacation, or arrive somewhere at the break of day?   Sun Seeker:3D Augm

Available for Apple and Android devices for $6.99, this app shows you precisely where the sun is or will be anytime and anywhere in the world with a graphic representation of the sun’s path over a compass.

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Scouting photo/video shoots is the first thing that comes to my mind.  If I’m planning a shoot at an outdoor location, I can save time by planning around that period when the sun will be most conducive to capturing ideal imagery. If you’re at a location, you can simply aim your cell phone and instantly see overlays indicating where the sun will be at any time and if there are any objects like building or trees that might obstruct it. You’ll know exactly when the sun will break the line of the obstruction and can be prepared to shoot.

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There are data panels detailing when the sun rises and sets, what the daylight duration is and Solstice information.  With map view, you can look in street, satellite or hybrid modes.  There are presets for various large cities throughout the world or you can find any other spot on earth that is represented on Google Maps by “pinching and dragging”.  You can also input coordinates if you have them.

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Another great use for this app is when you’re in the market for a home and looking at listings online, you can zoom to the house that you’re interested in and see overlays showing exactly where the sun exposures will be at different times of the day and different times of the year.  This is extremely valuable if you don’t want the afternoon sun in the living area, morning sun in your bedroom or if you do want a sunset view from your balcony.  What a great tool for a real estate agent!

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Sun Seeker is already heavily used by landscape architects, golf course turf managers and solar panel installers.  In one instance, an individual looking for season’s ticket seats at a football stadium even used Sun Seeker to determine the best seat location where he wouldn’t ever be looking into the sun. If you’re into gardening, you won’t have to guess how many hours of sun exposure an area will get.  You’ll have that information right in your hand.

Check it out and use your imagination.  You may find even more uses for Sun Seeker.

 

 

app talk: Word Lens

With school letting out and the summer travel season upon us, many people will be traveling abroad.  Why not put your phone to use for more than just social media.  What you didn’t learn this year in that Spanish or French language class, you can rely on your phone to help you with.  If you’re out of the country and need to use the public transit system, but you don’t understand the signs, here’s the app to help.  Word Lens can translate in real time between English, Spanish, French, German and Italian.

Word Lens works by using the camera on your smart phone to analysis a word and then instantly translates it before your very eyes.  First pick your language, for example French to English, align your word within the designated area and watch it magically go to work.  Word Lens works best on fairly large, clearly printed texts, such as that on street signs or possibly menus.  It won’t work well with handwritten or fancy scripted text.  I love this app and when you’re in a bind and need a quick translation, it’s worth a try.  I must say, it isn’t perfect by any means, but it’s better than nothing.  There may be words it can’t translate or it may give you more than one option as a possible translation, but either way it’s a cool app.

Word Lens also provides you the ability to look up words by typing them in and it will search for various meanings. It also allows you to turn on your camera light/flash when extra light is needed and the ability to zoom in when your image isn’t close enough to read.  I highly recommend giving it a try, it’s available in both the Android and IOS markets.

Word Lens example