What’s on your iPad?

OK, I’ll go first —

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A little while ago, I was asked to put together my top five iPad apps.

So, here they are. Ready?

1. Chrome
I’m so late to the Chrome-across-multiple-devices party it’s ridiculous. I’ve used Chrome on the desktop for yonks, then I added it to my phone (at the moment: the Motorola RAZR i), and then I finally added it to my iPad. Sign-in sync is nothing short of a revelation.

Alright some of you are going to be reading this going ‘OH COME ON WHATLEY! HOW HAVE YOU NOT BEEN USING THIS?!’ – well, I haven’t. Deal with it.

But seriously, it’s ace. I’m on my MacBook Pro at work; I open up some tabs to read later and when I get on the tube on the way home? Boom, there’s my stuff waiting for me on my iPad. Brilliant.

2. Paper by Fifty-Three
I’ve been using Paper since March last year when I spotted an awesome write-up over on Read Write Web. Since downloading it I’ve used it for a TON of things. From sketching superheroes (and super villains) to inventing mind robots that know when you want a cup of tea.

Paper is magnificent. It’s not cheap (if you want all the bells and whistles) but it’s 100% worth the investment.

3. Spotify
When you absolutely positively gotta have music when you’re cooking in the kitchen: accept no substitute. My iPad is my portable stereo system when I’m around the house and Spotify, when linked with a fairly awesome bluetooth speaker (bought from Carphone Warehouse), follows me around the home everywhere. Winner.

4. Reeder
Geez, where do I start? Outside of browsing the web, I’d say this is probably my number one used app on my iPad. Pulling in the feeds from my Google Reader, Reeder is where I consume my web.

The best things about Reeder for iPad are as follows

  • It’s my Google Reader, dammit!
  • It downloads content to read offline (essential for commuting)
  • Awesome sharing options (but no Tumblr – weird)
  • Everyone I know swears by it
  • I feel like it’s my friend – yes, that’s weird; and no, I don’t care.

5. Amazon Kindle
I use this app almost every day. Like Chrome, it’s mostly used on the commute to and from work; it’s the perfect accompaniment. And again like Chrome, I love the sync feature. I’ve got Kindle on all of my devices; I close the app on one device and when I open it on the next, it’s on the same page! It’s such a simple and easy thing but it makes ALL the difference.

And that’s that, in short: browsing, creating, listening, reading, and reading.

What’s on your iPad?

 

Lady Lemur’s Awesome Emporium

I have an iPad case. It is awesome.

So, @LadyLemur made me an iPad case...

Seriously.

Not a week goes by without someone passing comment about it in some way, shape or form. AND I LOVE IT. I’m not one to follow the crowd you see. I like things to be different (this too will also explain my iPad’s Joker-themed back decal as well as its sustainable African bubinga wood cover – I know there’s a word for this, but I don’t care).

Anyway, my point is, I used to know a girl called Roger and many moons ago we used to write a comedy blog together, and it was fun. However, times change, and it would seem, names do too.

These days Roger goes by the new mantle of ‘Lady Lemur‘ and while her blogging prowess has not ceased, her sewing and darning skills have grown immensely. So much so that what started off as a mere folksy-based hobby, is now a fully-fledged part-time job.

Lady Lemur’s Awesome Emporium is a place where you can purchase all sorts of geeky, material-based covers. From iPads to iPhones and everything in-between (read: kindles), Lady Lemur can cater for you all. Word has it she also makes handbags, but I wouldn’t know much about that.

Basically, what I’m trying to say is, if you have a piece of tech that needs a geeky cover – Lady Lemur’s Awesome Emporium is where you should be headed.

She rules.

Why I love Instagram

I started writing this post last weekend, before the big Facebook sale was announced, as I wanted to talk about – in light of the recent Android-owners backlash – I use (and enjoy) Instagram. It’s funny now though how that very same backlash has not only continued but also now includes all things Facebook. Incredible. C’est la vie.

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I love Instagram. There, I said it.
I also don’t own an iPhone.

So how?

Anyone who’s been reading this blog for any amount of time knows that I am a Nokia fan. My current phone du jour is the Nokia Lumia 800 and before I now I have waxed lyrical about its predecessors the N8 and the N86. Similarly, regular readers will also know that I am an iPad-owner also. Of that too, I am also a fan.

I am a social media junkie; If something is new and shiny, I take a(n educated and measured) interest and, in all honesty, the lure of Instagram was too much.

The next logical step? Install Instagram onto the iPad.

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While there isn’t an official Instagram iPad app, the iPhone version doubles up just fine. Problem solved, right? Well, yes but that’s not enough. I own an iPad 2 y’see and, while it does have an onboard camera, you may as well give a packet of crayons to a pack of blind monkeys for all the use it’ll do you. A decent image it produces, not.

The great thing about Nokia devices however, is that the top end bad boys tend to come packing high-end mobile camera technology. Which is great, and as 99% of the images I snap with my Lumia end up on my Flickr account – all I need is a method of getting those images into Instagram.

Well, that’s where Flickr Studio comes in –

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I can browse my Flickr photostream and download the images I want/need onto my iPad (you can see where this is going can’t you) which closes the circle nicely –

Lumia – >; Flickr
Flickr – iPad
iPad – >; Instagram

Yes, it’s a lengthy process and yes it’s not exactly ideal either but like I said, I like the network and I like the people I follow there. I installed Instagram onto my Nexus S a couple of days ago and I’ve hardly used it. I prefer the iPad experience. Plus, my pictures are infinitely better.

Since the Android release last week it’s almost too funny how much the elitist iPhone-owners have spat back at the network [EDIT: even more so now after the sale]. Apparently some slighted iPhone-Instagrammers are even flocking to new services to escape the influx of ‘tasteless’ Android-ers. Hilarious.

I’ve enjoyed being a part of the Instagram community and have never uploaded an iPhone-created picture, ever. That makes me happy inside and that’s how I use (and why I love) Instagram.

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PS. As I said earlier this week, post-sale, Instagram will be fine

;

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Five things on Friday #14

Five things of note for the week ending Friday, April 6th 2012

1. Paper by Fifty Three
I’ve already blogged about discovering this app, but if you haven’t taken a look yet (it’s for the iPad) then I recommend you do. I love it and have been sketching away like there’s no tomorrow since installing… Unsurprisingly, there’s a theme.

Heroes!

2. Awesome New Music

New Childish Gambino
New Nicki Minaj
New Kanye West
And this full album stream from Alabama Shakes is worth a lisen too.
Enjoy 

3. Comic book stuff
I’ve been reading Project Rooftop for some time now, and it is an ace source of fantastic artwork on some my favourite characters. Their remit is to highlight and drive the craft of redesigning comic book characters that you know and love and generally showcase some gorgeous work.

This past week has been no different, but these two redesigns, Ninja Turtles and X-Men respectively, stood out particularly.

Donatello, Michelangelo, Raphael and Leonardo all getting the redesign treatment. Given the myriad of interpretations the Turtles have been through over the years, giving them a fresh take is no easy task. But this effort is actually brilliant. I want to see more… And guess what, you can! Full set available here

This one stands out for two reasons. First, it’s the original X-Men (who are still one of the best teams to date) and two, the version of Ice-Man is sweet. I’ve not seen an ice-as-armour version before and well, no pun intended, it’s just too damn cool for words. You can check out the full set over on P:R. It’s worth a look, definitely.

What do you think?

4. The Lumia 900
The Nokia Lumia 900 launches this week and, while it is only really a bigger version of the Lumia 800 (which I’ve been rocking and enjoying since late last year), it’s intriguing to me as it’s the big N’s first serious play in the USA since, well – since forever really. To say it’s make or break time might be an understatement, but I think they might actually have winner on their hands. Only time will time.

This Read Write Web piece made me grin mind –

“There have been rumors that Nokia is paying AT&T to make sure that every rep uses the Lumia 900 as a personal device. The idea is that consumers trust sales reps to steer them in the right direction. Even as an advanced early adopter and mobile technology reporter, I often trust sales reps to tell me what the best device is and what is coming out (sometimes I quiz them to see how much they actually know about the ecosystem because I am that type of jerk).”

Heh, you’re not on your own there chap… 

I’d like to have a play with the Lumia 900 at some point (honestly, I haven’t played with one yet!) and I’m sure it’d be great, but what interests me more is what’s coming next. We all know the Lumia range is merely a proof-of-concept device (and a very nice range it is too) but I want to see what the tech-heads in Finland are going to do next. Now they’ve proven they can design gorgeous Windows phones, let’s see some of that innovation that they’re also famous for. Exciting times ahead, both for Nokia itself as well as the industry as a whole.

5. I made the Slovenian FT

Amazing

Bonuses: Dan Goodall got his blog back online, go read it; Fish: a tap essay is one of the best things I’ve come across for a long time and finally, I’ve been looking at the image below nearly every day – it’s just beautiful. 

Until next time –

5 things on Friday #9

Here are five things (that are on time for once) from this past week that are all totally worth sharing with you, dear reader. Oh, and to top it off, I’m trying something different this week. Instead of just linking to stuff, I’m going to embed things wherever possible.

Do let me know what you think, won’t you?
[Comments or tweets are welcome]

Shall we?

1. Reeder
My favourite information tool is by far and away Google Reader. It’s an RSS reader, by Google. Fairly simple, fairly good (it used to be awesome, but that’s another story). However there’s no official Google Reader (or ‘GReader’) app for the iPad, which – as some of you already know – is my favourite reading implement. This week though, thanks to the wonder of the interwebzI discovered Reeder.

It’s pretty definitive, you can read your feeds offline and well, I’ve been using it daily ever since I bought it. If you use Google Reader and own an iPad, get Reeder. Now.
[iTunes link].

2. Amazing Cake
My girlfriend likes to bake. This is great news for my lips, but bad news for my hips. But who cares, you only live once and well, when it’s the GF’s best mate’s birthday and you’re asked to lend a hand in making THE BEST CAKE YOU’VE EVER MADE, you can’t really say no.

3. Little Bay
Keeping with said birthday celebrations for a further moment, we went in search of a restaurant last weekend that would cater our large group’s numbers as well as its eating habits. Through a spot of googling, tweeting and general recommending we ended up at Little Bay. It was GORGEOUS. And, if you ever find yourself looking for somewhere to eat ’round Kilburn way, I’d recommend it, 100%.

Good food, DAMN good prices and just a lovely atmosphere to boot. Go.

4. Mobile Stuff
Two mobile things of note this week. First up, the Nokia 808 Pureview. A phone that packs a 41MP camera. Yes, that’s right – this is not a typo – a FORTY ONE MEGAPIXEL CAMERA. The images are amazing. This is pre-release software and well, just like when they made global turn-by-turn navigation free for the world over, Nokia just flexed its muscles again. And I do love it when that happens.

The second mobile thing that happened was the meeting of a crack group of mobile geeks in central London to celebrate NOT being at Mobile World Congress. It was fun. I barely made it on time (read: I was late) after spending the day in Paris at a meeting but still, we had quite a giggle. I’m sure there’ll be video soon too… [update: great write up from Kip]

5. TED 2023
A little while ago I blogged about how frickin’ awesome PROMETHEUS looked and how much it was definitely tied to the ALIEN universe. Well this week, the first piece of online marketing dropped, in the shape of a TED talk from 2023. If you’re unfamiliar with TED please go, right now, and educate yourself immediately. Guy Pearce features as one Peter Weyland whom, if you know your ALIEN mythology, is related to the Weyland corporation that is depicted in said world.

I like this, a lot. Well done.

Bonuses: The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel – not a film I would normally see but surprisingly likeable and quite enjoyable; some awesomely sweet and slightly disturbing art; and this GORGEOUS picture that I gleaned from 365 things that make me happy.

Chris and I used to work at SpinVox. I follow his blog because I like his attitude to the world. You should too.

Original Moleskine entry

 

5 things on Friday #5

This week I’m cheating again. Things written on Monday and then backdated to Friday.

Shrug.

Sue me.

5 things of note from this past week –

  1. Travelling Light @ The National Theatre. Admittedly my tickets were freebies from a friend but still, it’s still definitely worth seeing. So what if the accents are ropey at times and who cares if the script is slightly clunky in places – it was lovely little piece of theatre.
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  2. Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol @ The IMAX!! Bloody good and again, well worth seeing (at THE IMAX though, obviously).
    .
  3. #DriveTime – aka ‘tweet along with Drive’ – came and went. It was fun, but could it have been better?
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  4. The Descendants (w/ G Clooney). Dead good.; it just kinda… happens. He’s bloody brilliant actually, best thing/most nuanced performance since Michael Clayton. Yep. You should see that too.
    .
  5. The future arrived, via my iPad. Still learning. Amazing.
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5 things on Friday #5

Bonuses: Sleb spotting in Soho, covered in snow at Speakeasys in Clapham and some gorgeous MEGACITY photography up in Leeds.