iPhone Life magazine

Nate Adcock's picture

Nate Adcock is a system and integration engineer with experience managing and administering a variety of computing environments. He has worked extensively with mobile gadgets of all shapes and sizes for many years. He is also a former military weather forecaster. Nate is a regular contributor for the iphonelife.com and smartphonemag.com blogs and helps manage both websites. Read more from Nate at natestera.drupalgardens.com or e-mail him at nate@iphonelife.com.

Drawing review roundup - Set Paint Go, Grafio, Illustrator and tips for an aging iPad

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I recently reviewed a new stylus (see GoSmart review here), so figured I would swing back and repost on some of the drawing apps I used in the review. I also wanted to cover a unique "self-drawing" app created by Eric Hayes (an MIT math wiz and artist) called Set Paint Go. In this drawing roundup: Grafio, a very powerful diagramming and drawing toolset with a highly capable Lite version; Illustrator, another simple editor that can help you produce great looking graphics in like 2 seconds. I also have a few quick tips for when app crashes occur on older hardware, since I have been having some issues with an aging gadget...



mophie OUTRIDE debut!

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mophie has cases and charger combo rigs that are mind-blowingly cool, so no surprise them thinking of a way to protect and mount your iPhone on a surfboard (or insert your sporting conveyance here)! OUTRIDE, which will be available in mid-September, let's you catch all the extreme fun with less risk to your electronic buddy (so it can catch the action)! Read on for full PR release!



GoSmart Stylus Review

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The GoSmart is really not the typical stylus your grandfather used (though it might resemble a sort of drafting instrument). It is substantially more, in point of fact. An ingenious twist of simple engineering applied to the challenge of drawing or writing on the iPad screen in a natural, tactile manner. As a former weather guy, I used to spend hours hunched over first paper charts (waaay back) and then later a computer screen/drawing tablet... mostly just drawing lines (always lines of equal something or other). In the bad old days, drawing on a computer screen was an act more akin to connecting the dots using a drawing puck (on a tablet surface), and the whole experience was frustrating, jerky, often producing an erroneous result. If I would have had an iPad and a GoSmart stylus, I would have relished the task! It might have helped me forecast the weather better as well--ok, joking aside, the GoSmart is a stylus worthy of it's name...read on to learn why you will want this one.


Weekly App Review - Utility Roundup and Chrome Shakedown!

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Was able to check out 3 new handy utilities this week, and the new so-called Chrome for iOS browser, which is the Safari engine in a Chrome-like wrapper with a few added features that help if you are already drinking the Goog kool-aid. I have come to rely heavily on Safari, and IMO, Chrome mobile did not impress at all. About the only thing I liked was being able to get to my bookmarks, but it performed too chaotically to be useful. Also in this post, I cover some handy lightweight remote control apps (PC HUD and OFF) that let you monitor, stop or restart a PC or Mac from your iDevice, and a really decent calc/notepad app (CalcTape) for running accounting tallies and similar number-crunching tasks. As a bonus, I'll round up 3 of my fav free utilities at the end! Perfect end to a review roundup...



Pearltrees releases iPhone app version!

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Today, the new Pearltrees iPhone app was released giving you a new and compelling way to share your life through iPhone. You may wonder why that matters--at least 2 of us here at IPLife have reviewed the previous app (see mine here and Patricia's here), and agree that Pearltrees is an app you should download. I sat down on a skype call with self-described "Chief Evangelist" Oliver Starr to get the skinny on the new version, which if Oliver is to be believed could very well change the course of the universe (okay, he didn't say that), but it certainly sounded like the new and improved Pearltrees could certainly change the way you organize and share photos, notes and your fav internet content. Read on to find out why...


GoSmart Stylus transforms iPad into a real sketchpad!

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Whenever I see a demonstration like the embedded video (see above) on the GoSmart Stylus--a massively cool piece showing really talented folks using the iPad like a real sketchpad--I am reminded what an iPad neanderthal I am in comparison; "Me use iPad to check weather...iPad good, iPad good...!" Sheesh! Well one of the secrets here is the amazing drawnig tech that is part of how they are doing it (but only a part). I'm not saying this stylus will make you an artist, but if you are an artist you probably want this stylus. Read on for full PR info about GoSmart coming August 8 2012 (available now for pre-order), or go here.



Ringbow on Kickstarter still needs $14K!

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Credit Engadget for posting up a news item a few weeks back on the Ringbow hitting Kickstarter and somehow buried my reminder to re-post here until tonight. Anyway, looks like too cool of an idea to let slip completely off the radar, especially what with all our gamer/blogger types (artists too). I know I welcome any assistive tech that can improve mobile gaming. You want to help, $45 gets you a Ringbow (black) to play with and some game packages. They still need around $14K to reach the $100K minimum for production (July 22, 2012 Kickstarter deadline)... Either way, might be cool just to have one. Video after the break...



What I Played this Week - Bounty Racer, Kingdom Rush, Stitcher and Pearltrees!

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What I played this week includes a mix of apps for both work and play, and warn you this will be a lengthy column, as also have a bit of game news to share at the end. So, let's jump in--play before work, as the saying goes: Bounty Racer (beta) is an exquisite crash cart-esque 3D racing menagerie (should be released next week). Second, Kingdom Rush for iPhone is engaging, if tiny, Tower Defense fun with rousing vocals and clashing swords to keep you alert through endless enemy waves. Pearltrees is a "web curation" app (web-content mind mapping/sharing) with an interesting way to find/share online content. Stitcher is to news radio and podcasts what Slacker or Pandora are to music.  Lot's to look at, so let the WIPTW madness commence forthwith!



What I played this week - Real life storm dodge and Wawa Land platforming fun!

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This week, I played just one new game--a platformer called Wawa land... well, if you don't count driving in a real life superstorm! I had wanted to also check out Kindom Rush for iPhone (Eric reviewing the iPad version), but have not had the opportunity to reliably get back online to grab it. A monster storm tore through our area smashing houses, and slapping down trees and power lines like kiddy toys, leaving us with a few more important things to worry about! We happened to be driving home from a concert (with a side-trip to the local Taco Bell drive thru--long story) when the storm hit. I would have certainly rather been in Wawa Land than a wind-tunnel filled with water, lightning and debris.



nPower PEG - make your own power!

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Finding power can be a problem when you travel, especially when you go off into the wilds of some remote location. Take as much portable technology with you as possible is my advice. People often look at me weird when I suggest this. Should you carry more dried food, water and first aid gear? Sure, but a cached set of accurate and up-to-date digital terrain maps will lead you back to civilization if you get in a fix, or may even lead civilization to you. Modern humans use technology like apes use a stick to get ants out of a log, and let's face it, you might be less likely to panic if you have your handy iPhone and it actually works. The nPower PEG is your insurance against a dead battery! Using kinetic energy, you can keep that technology lifeline open... Read on for the full press release...



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