iPhone Life magazine

Jim Karpen's picture

Jim Karpen holds a Ph.D. in literature and writing, and has a love of gizmos. His doctoral dissertation focused on the revolutionary consequences of digital technologies and anticipated some of the developments taking place in the industry today. Jim has been writing about the Internet and technology since 1994 and has been using Apple's visionary products for decades.

Pocket Dictate — free software for recording dictation

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Even though you have Voice Memo on your iPhone you might also be interested in the free Pocket Dictate, which lets you make recordings and then tap the send button to e-mail it to your typist from within the app. You can also send it via ftp. The app automatically compresses the WAV file. There are other useful controls, too, including the ability to overwrite and insert. A voice activation feature lets you set it so that it only records when you're speaking. And while it's designed to emulate — and replace — a dictaphone, obviously it could be used for other purposes, such as interviews.



Uh, oh — competition for iPhone Life magazine from Guide to Phone Apps magazine

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Coinciding with CES, Beckett Media announced the availability of Guide to Phone Apps magazine, which covers three platforms: iPhone, Blackberry, and Android. The press release describes it as, "the #1 source for all your iPhone and BlackBerry app news and reviews." I beg to differ, of course. The first issue is 100 pages, like our own magazine, and covers apps in a variety of categories, including games, travel, social networking, utilities, and more.



Parrot AR Drone — toy hovercraft/camera controlled by your iPhone

Following the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the TidBITS website gave the "most insane technology" award to Parrot AR Drone, a hovercraft that you control with your iPhone or iPod touch and that has an onboard camera. It was demoed at CES but isn't expected to be available until the end of this year. The video makes it look like great fun.



ICE App — free app in case of emergencies

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The free ICE App is one that everyone should have — and hopefully no one will need to use. The idea is simple: everyone is supposed to have an ICE contact in their phone, "ICE" standing for "in case of emergency." ICE App suggests that you put its icon in the upper right-hand corner of the main screen. The app lets you enter four categories of info: who you are, your emergency contacts, medical info, and allergies. 



Zinio — free app for reading magazines

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Zinio is a leader in electronic versions of major national magazines, with their editions including our very own iPhone Life magazine (4 issues for $10). Zinio does a good job of digitally replicating the experience of reading a print magazine. And now they have a Zinio Magazine Reader out for the iPhone. You need to be a Zinio subscriber, or you can purchase single issues or subscription via the app.



CES gadgets include 3D TV and 3D Blue-ray players

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Amazing things this year at CES (Consumer Electronics Show), as you can tell from the reports by our bloggers. This is stuff you want, such as a 3D plasma TV which won best-of-show and 3D-caqpable home-theater-in-a-box systems. And here's a roundup of 3D Blue-ray players. You can find a great overview on CNET



New York Times and Time magazine favorite apps of 2009

Continuing with my series on year-end lists of best apps, here are lists from the New York Times and Time magazine. The list of 14 favorite apps from New York Times writer Roy Furchgott includes a few apps for other iPhones, but mainly guides you to some really good iPhone apps. Time magazine's top 10 for 2009 are all excellent apps that deserve your attention.



Great lists of best apps in over 40 categories

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I'm going to take the unusual step of blogging about a resource even though my fellow blogger Tari just covered it. And this reason is — this is the best resource I've ever seen for finding useful apps. This page on Mashable directs you to lists of the best apps in an amazing array of categories — from "60+ Free Classic Tabletop Games for the iPhone" to "50+ Free iPhone Apps to Make You Richer." There are over 40 such lists.



Moodagent — free app for generating playlists

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Moodagent has only been out about three weeks and already has over 200,000 downloads and is currently averaging 25,000 downloads a day. Pretty impressive. It's a freebie that lets you move sliders to indicate the type of music you want to hear, and in seconds it generates playlists. It uses the song's actual content to make recommendations based on digital analysis of the music. This is in contrast to Apple's Genius, which makes recommendations based on purchase history.



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