I recently saw that the Met Office had a new weather app. I think it popped up on the front page of the app store. I was interested as I’m quite fussy about my weather apps. Once you get used to one and the information it gives you it’s quite hard to change. Much like buying a new wallet, which I have to do soon and it fills me with dread. By the way, I don’t like the term “app”, I’m not particularly fond of the term “application”, to me these are programs and always will be.
Here’s the front page of the new app:
The new app had embedded video forecasts from the Met Office – these are not needed, I’m too old to care for video forecasts. Also, video on a phone is antisocial and useless, I can get the same information without the noise and movement. I think this may be a generational thing. I don’t need sound and people to inform me something that I can see in a diagram or map. It could possibly be why I also don’t like the news that is broadcast into our homes all the time [hint: change channel, which I do].
Here’s another view of the new app:
I’m not sure I like the days across the top. I think that’s mostly because I the older app [which is still available] had the days going down the screen. The worst part of the new app is the weather alert screen. This screen used to be a map with colours over it.
This is a good weather warning map. It tells me what I need to know. The new app just has text to read. I can’t be bothered to read it. The text is broken down into regions. I can be even less bothered to find my region and then decode the words. Oddly, I do like listening to radio weather broadcasts so maybe I’m just weird here.
One last thing. The new app has done away with proper weather charts. These actually mean something to me and I like them. They give an overall impression of what is really going on in the weather. Here are some examples of good stuff:
Day by day and then lovely extra information if you need it. There’s a page that will give hour by hour predictions too.
Look at these maps. Aren’t they pretty and lovely. They let you know what’s going on. The new app doesn’t have this. Which is a shame. I do get the feeling that sometimes things are “improved” to include lots of new functions but the reality is that they just fuck them up.
While on my trip to Washington DC I met someone who asked me for my opinion on a bracelet / wrist band thing they had bought. I was worried at first because these things tend to be utter rubbish, woo if you will. There are many performance bands that are supposed to interact with your body’s vibrations and improve your coordination and these are all fraud. They don’t work and they never will. If someone like Powerbalance can show that their bracelet works then we will have to re-write all of modern physics [similarly if ghosts exists then what are they made of? Get me the proof and we’ll develop new physics].
I had just been introduced to the Up by Jawbone wristband. A movement (not position) tracker. It has a gizmo inside that measures how much you move and then you can upload that data to your iPhone or android device. I was so excited by this that I went and bought one from the Apple shop in Georgetown [DC].
The device is easy to use. You wear it on your wrist and then upload the data to your phone app twice a day. You don’t have to upload the data that often but it seems about right.
I have to say I have been really impressed with the data I can collect. The Up band will time and measure the distance of a run, it’ll buzz me when I’ve been inactive. It can tell what sort of sleep I am having and when I got up to look after my boys.
The big question is how to use the data. It’s all very well collecting this stuff but it’s another knowing what to do with it. I have no idea how to use this data to inform what I should do in the future. The walking and running data is fair enough, I know I can aim to move around more but the sleep data? I can only sleep how I sleep. Perhaps I need to search the interweb thing to see if I can find out how to improve my sleep without having to give up alcohol! I love my wristband. I love the information it collects and the graphics it shows me. I’m just not sure what it tells me!
It’s not a strong enough word to describe my reaction the the ABC Animals app from the Apple App Store.
I looked for an alphabet app for #1 to play with as he is starting to learn to read. ABC Animals looked good and I was quite impressed with it.
You go through the alphabet and touch the screen and get a picture of an animal, that animal’s sound and the animal is aurally named.
There’s a crocodile for C:
An elephant for E:
A tiger for T:
But hold on just a MF minute. WTF is this?.
There’s a UNICORN for the letter U:
This is just utter ARSE. I am ashamed I ever even downloaded this app. It’s not like there’s a shortage of animals beginning with U.
The app managed just fine to find the X-Ray Fish for the letter X so why are they messing around with a mythical animal for U?
The app has been deleted.
Just got the Shatoetry app. Been playing a bit but want to put some serious effort into re-creating some metal songs in Shatoetry. Shatner is a genius.
Here’s my first attempt:
More to follow. Search this site for “Shatoetry”.
Just installed Plane Finder AR onto the phone. Point your camera at a plane and it’ll tell you
what it is
where it is
where it’s going
how far away it is
whose it is
absolutely brilliant. I love it. Just right for an aircraft geek.
Night time picture of screen! That’s what time it is here!