Recent Articles By Andrew Orr [RSS]

This World Creator App is a 2048 Building Simulator Game

· Andrew Orr · Cool Stuff Found

A cool app called World Creator combines gameplay from the popular app 2048 with a SimCity-like building simulator game. Choose various historical personages as your hero, build your city in 2048 style, meanwhile cast unique skills to attack or disturb opponents, crash their cities and become the champion. Witness opponents’ construction progress in realtime, collect vairous skins of the heroes, fight with other players in different styles, and upgrade your heroes, enhance skill power, overwhelm your opponents in the battlefield. Spring to winter, sunrise to sunset, day to night, enjoy the view of your civilization in construction from every angle. App Store: World Creator! – Free

This World Creator App is a 2048 Building Simulator Game

You Can Now Download the iOS 12 Public Beta

· Andrew Orr · News

The iOS 12 public beta is live, and you can download it over at Apple’s website. Of course, there are certain things to keep in mind and do beforehand.

SongShift Lets You Transfer Apple Music Playlists to Other Services

· Andrew Orr · Cool Stuff Found

There’s an app called SongShift that lets you transfer Apple Music playlists to other services. Supported services include Apple Music, Deezer, Discogs, HypeMachine, LastFM, Napster, Pandora, Spotify, Tidal, and YouTube. You can “shift” complete playlists from one streaming service to another, and automatically keep all of your playlists synced with each other. I’ve heard some Apple customers say that when they unsubscribe from Apple Music, then re-subscribe later on, none of their playlists and content is saved. I’ve never unsubscribed yet so I haven’t run into this issue, but it sounds like SongShift can help in these cases. App Store: SongShift – Free

SongShift Lets You Transfer Apple Music Playlists to Other Services

Free App Trials From Apple's Perspective

· Andrew Orr · Link

Drew McCormack took to Medium to write a post on trying to understand Apple’s perspective when it comes to free app trials. Developers aren’t happy about the move, because some argue that the changes to In-App Purchase guidelines aren’t true free trials.

So why does Apple…not offer a more formal version of free trials? Most developers seem to assume they are deliberately ignoring their protests, for no good reason, or that they simply are not willing to dedicate the resources to solve the problem. I doubt both of these assumptions. I think Apple have probably thought long and hard about it, and concluded that the options they have introduced are actually better than the free trials developer’s are requesting.

Awesome ARKit is a Big List of ARKit Projects and Resources

· Andrew Orr · Cool Stuff Found

Over on GitHub there is a curated list of ARKit projects and resources called Awesome ARKit. ARKit is Apple’s technology to enable augmented reality experiences for Apple devices. In this list you’ll find apps, tutorials, projects, and resources. Some of the tutorials include using ARKit with Metal, importing 3D models for ARKit, building an ARKit application with Unity, and a bunch more. Cool projects include ARSolarPlay, Boxify, ARPaint, cARd, pARtfolio, Measure, Ruler, and more. It’s a great list and I recommend you check it out, especially the list of ARKit apps.

Awesome ARKit is a Big List of ARKit Projects and Resources

The MacBook Touch Bar Helps Customers who need Accessibility

· Andrew Orr · Link

Redditor u/cozygodal shared a story of using the MacBook Touch Bar. A lot of Apple customers (including the press) don’t like the Touch Bar and think it’s a gimmick. But u/cozygodal found it helpful for their dyslexia.

I would love to spotlight a specific use-case for the Touch Bar that maybe not a lot of people notice. I have dyslexia and a really hard time to spell words correctly. Taking notes in class is hard because I write so slow and it is a a lot harder to discuss my notes with classmates because nobody can read a dame word.

And a that point the MacBook Pro came in. You can see the words while typing and that is a godsend. I’m so much faster it is unbelievable like a switch in my brain is turned on. If you are telling me a word I cannot spell it in my head I had to memorized every single word I know like a foreign language and I can recall my memory so much faster with the pictorial representation of words in the touch bar.

Thank you Apple for making my life a lot easier 🙂

A Fighting Robot Called Super Anthony is on Kickstarter

· Andrew Orr · Cool Stuff Found

There’s a fighting robot on the Kickstarter scene called Super Anthony. It’s 15 inches tall and weighs 4.6 pounds, but it can punch with the power of a human at 99 pounds. It’s programmed with fighting moves out of the box, and you can program your own moves on your computer. Tristan Greene at TheNextWeb wrote a review of Super Anthony. He says that although the robot has a powerful punch, “I’m pretty sure a modified Roomba would take this thing down, so it’s not a street fighter.” You can preorder it on Kickstarter, starting at US$1,299 for the Super Early Bird reward.

A Fighting Robot Called Super Anthony is on Kickstarter

What is the Strategy With the Apple Health Platform?

· Andrew Orr · Link

Over on Quora, a website where you can ask questions, someone asked: “What is Apple’s strategy with their health platform?” User Mills Baker gave an interesting answer, saying that the Apple health platform aims to fill a void that other tech companies are unable to fill.

For various reasons from fragmentation to consumer concern about data collection and privacy, Samsung, Google, Facebook, Amazon, and so on (including most Android hardware companies) cannot develop advanced health-related features and incorporate them into their products. Nowhere does a tightly-controlled, individual-user-oriented, “device-restricted” product ecosystem make more sense than with sensitive health records and holistic measurement / presentation / usage. Apple will probably remain most-trusted, most-reliable, and most usable in this area for a long time.

Why Did Apple Make Screen Time on iOS 12?

· Andrew Orr · Link

Writing for Quartz, Nir Eyal opines on the reason why Apple made Screen Time on iOS 12, as well as Google’s Digital Health platform. Mr. Eyal studied the psychological techniques that companies use to get people hooked, and he wrote a book too. He says that Apple and Google don’t want you to get addicted, but instead form a healthy relationship with your devices.

As they often do with successful apps built on their platforms, Apple and Google took note of what consumers wanted and decided to incorporate these features as standard…They also went beyond what app makers can do by adding features only the operating system makers can offer, like batch notifications to reduce the frequency of intraday interruptions and the ability to put the phone in “shush” mode by flipping it over.

With few exceptions, when a product harms people, consumers tend to use it less often or find better alternatives. The feature fight between these two tech rivals benefits everyone. The move to help users create healthy habits with their devices is an example of competition making products better.

These AI Shoes Could Become Your Fitness Coach

· Andrew Orr · Link

Writing for Techcrunch, Callum Booth talks about a device called Runvi. It’s on Kickstarter right now, consisting of two insoles, and it wants to be your AI-powered running coach by analyzing the way you move. These AI shoes are connected by something called the Core, which is a part of the insole you can remove. This acts as the brain, and powers the sensors, as well as logging and storing data before sending it to your phone.

There are other running products out there – the Lumo Run or Arion, which is another insole tracker, for example – but Runvi, on the surface at least, appears to be superior. It has more sensors, is cheaper than Arion, and is more self-contained, as it doesn’t need anything hooking over your shoe.

It’s vital to remember this is just on paper though. While the idea and set-up looks promising, we’ll have to wait until we have the physical copies in our hands, or, you know, in our shoes, before we can see how it works in reality. Until then, I’m quietly hopeful I won’t hurt my knee any more.

Check Out This AR Business Card Concept

· Andrew Orr · Cool Stuff Found

iOS developer Oscar Falmer tweeted a video of an AR business card concept. It shows someone holding up a business card of Oscar, and content like a website link, twitter link, buttons for contact, and a timeline of recent work appears in mid-air around the business card. There is so much potential in augmented reality, and companies like Apple are just getting started. iOS 12 will bring even more AR goodness with ARKit 2.0.

Check Out This AR Business Card Concept