Are you an app developer? Are you covert as hell? Do you think we should all throw our privacy cautions to the wind? Boy, does the FBI have the job for you: design an app to help the government spy. [more inside]
"What do you say to a police officer who tells you to stop when you are legally and not obstructively filming their interactions?" [more inside]
Access Together crowdsources accessibility information about businesses and other venues. The site is relatively new, and coverage outside of NYC is sparse, but contributing is easy.
". . .the airplane seat is sort of a planetarium for the Earth,” she says. “It’s a great way to inspire people to learn about the sciences.”Flyover Country is a free app that correlates geo/paleo databases, maps, and other data sources with your phone's GPS to provide information and identification about the landscape below as you fly over it - no wi-fi necessary. [more inside]
"Swipe Buster, he said, was an attempt, albeit perhaps a prurient and sordid one, to use a popular company (Tinder) and a juicy lure (cheating) in order to educate people about how much of their personal data is out there and how easily people can get access to it without hacking or breaking rules. (Swipe Buster was originally called Tinder Buster. It changed its name and URL on Sunday evening.)" — Here’s How You Can Check if Your Partner Is Cheating on Tinder by Emily Jane Fox for Vanity Fair. Previously: Tinder Confidential, and relatedly: Ashley Madison has been hacked. [more inside]
Face Swap Live is an app for iOS and Android phones that lets you swap faces with someone (or some thing, like your cat) using your phone's camera. It garnered some attention last year for the horrific nightmare fuel that can result from a swap. Now, Rhett LeCompte has recorded a video of himself singing "We Are The World" using Face Swap to play all the original singers.
Anchor, which seems to be to audio what Twitter is to writing or Instagram to photography, launched a few days ago as a new "truly public" radio where everyone can contribute and comment. [more inside]
"StoryCorps is an oral history project that has collected 65,000 stories from 100,000 participants since 2003 using sound booths and mobile studios. However, with the newly developed StoryCorps mobile app, the booth is no longer needed. Now anyone with a mobile phone can record an interview and upload the audio to the StoryCorps archive at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress." [more inside]
"the [UCLA Game Lab] fosters research and development in not only computer or video games, but also physical, tabletop, and other game forms. Known for its annual Game Art Festival at the Hammer Museum in Westwood, California, the lab supports the production and exhibition of student work, but it also curates and promotes vanguard game design from around the world. Through its tripartite mission to push the envelope of game aesthetics, game context, and game genres, the lab nurtures game projects that often adapt contentious, controversial subjects not found (overtly, anyway) in many commercial games: issues of politics, gender and identity, industry and commerce, the environment, experiences of alterity, the silly and the surreal…. In short, all that composes lived experience becomes fair game, so to speak, for adaptation.." -- Playfully Subversive: the Many Roles of Adaptation in Making Games at the UCLA Game Lab by David O'Grady [more inside]
Avoid Humans is a service that scours Foursquare and Instagram checkins to find nearby coffee shops, restaurants, and bars that are the least likely to be crowded.
Tired of seeing your friends' bands? Don't feel like going to that dinner party? Sick of social events? Too polite and/or timid to say "That won't be possible"? Worry no more --pull up your calendar and show your would-be host or hostess that you'd love to make it but you've just too busy. Amazingly busy. Fuck-off levels of busy.
The fantastic Cornell Lab of Ornithology offers two ways to identify that bird you saw, if you were bird watching in North America, with Merlin. You can download the free app for Android or iPhone and go through a series of prompts to ID that bird, or upload a photo from your desktop, note where and when you took the photo, tag the tip of the beak, the eye and the tail of the bird and like magic (and with use of the eBird database), you can learn about the birds you see.
Disruption’s Tragic Flaw The case of Uber shows why European companies should not follow the example of their American competitors too closely. It pays to take the needs of customers and contractors into account.
BeeLine Reader makes screen reading easier with multicolored gradients that guide your eyes from line to line.
ImmigrationTrackr - "This project was developed in two hackathons (Code for America and Lesbians Who Tech) to create an open-source tool to help visa and immigration paperwork. The hope is that other people will build on this and make a viable tool for public use. Right now it's mostly developed on Rails." [via mefi projects]
The Ghost Of Grindr "On Wednesday Michael Musto has an item in his column that reads “We’ve all met someone online with attractive photos who then shows up at your door looking like something from Night of the Living Dead, but rumors are growing amongst app-happy gays of a real life ‘ghost trick’ who shows up at your apartment via Grindr, then vanishes into thin air (shady!). I don’t know what to think of this urban legend-y tale, but shaken witnesses are sticking by their stories, and police have been involved in a few incidents, so be careful out there, boys (and ghouls).”
Gina Trapani described that weekend as a slow boil. There wasn't a tangible concept yet. But there was something there—a problem she needed to solve. It was early 2009, and an idea had been nagging her for more than a year. She left Lifehacker in large part because she was ready to stop writing about all the apps other people were making and start creating some of her own. Just weeks after she stepped down as the editor, she had a phone conversation with her former boss, Gawker chief Nick Denton. "There's a Twitter app I want to build," she had told him.
Refuge Restrooms is a crowdsourced website that works to help trans, intersex, and gender nonconforming people find safe restrooms. They've recently launched an iPhone app, with an unofficial (and with-ads) android app already out. [more inside]
How we saved Baltimore $600,000 in one day.
Be My Eyes is an app which connects blind people needing assistance with a sighted person who can help them by providing a description of what they're seeing. You can be Amelie!
Plague is a new social networking app that spreads information like a contagious disease. You see a post from someone who is geographically close to you. Swipe up to spread it to the users nearest to you, swipe down to not share it. The more fun part is posting your own content and watching it travel around globe. These articles explain with more detail.
Back in 2006, 235w103 asked "...is there some sort of online thing where it'll find me a girl-scout to purchase from? Because I don't know any". There is now. Starting December 12, customers can order cookies from scouts online; and have the boxes shipped directly to their homes. There is also a new app that will point you to booth sales in your area.
Worried about being pulled over for Driving while black? No worries, there's an App for that coming, checkout the official site with video demo.
AutoRap is an app that will take words spoken into it and automatically tune them into one of several pre-set rap beats. Here, a young girl makes an adorable rap about her mother.
Announced at the end of June, Emojli was billed as "the emoji-only network." One source called it worse than Yo. It launched yesterday with 70,000 names registered. The creators of the app 🌠 Tom Scott (previously on Metafilter) and 😃 Matt Gray (who shows up frequently on Tom's YouTube channel) presented a talk: "Emojli: Behind the Scenes and Why You Should Never Build An App."
Somebody: A new app by Miranda July (previously) allows you to send somebody a message… sort of. When you send your friend a message through Somebody, it goes — not to your friend — but to the Somebody user nearest your friend. This person (likely a stranger) delivers the message verbally, acting as your stand-in. Watch the Somebody movie.
A series from Re/code exploring the explosion of tech startups that cater to our every need and desire, on demand. [more inside]
BigApps (previously) "is a competition that empowers the sharpest minds in tech, design, and business to solve NYC's toughest challenges." One of the finalists is the recently-launched SketchFactor, which aims to help users avoid "sketchy" neighborhoods by posting notes about crime, racial profiling, harassment, and desolation. Not surprisingly, the creators have faced racism accusations. The developers have responded to the charges on their website.
The DMMapp (Digitized Medieval Manuscripts App) is a website that links to more than 300 libraries in the world. Each one of these contains medieval manuscripts that can be browsed for free. The DMMapp is a product of Sexy Codicology, an independent project focused on medieval illuminated manuscripts and social media. It maintains a great blog about medieval manuscripts, especially those that are available online.
Are you playing Kim Kardashian: Hollywood yet? Pretty much everyone is, including the EPA Office of Water. Your mission is simple: become an A-list celebrity through networking, flirting, modeling, promoting vodka, avoiding landlords and poking birds for money, and dating assholes in fedoras. Oh, and plenty of in-app purchases. Or you could just cheat.
A friendship that lasts 24 hours unless you opt to extend. An app where you can find interesting people who will disappear in 24 hours unless you'd like to keep the connection going.
Last month, an oNote was sent across the Atlantic via the oPhone, and the recipients were treated to the scent of champagne and macarons. [more inside]
Yo: Dumb app, security risk, passing fad, and/or "easily the worst piece of software I've ever used"?
Whisper is an app that allows users to "anonymously share your thoughts and emotions with the world, and form lasting and meaningful relationships in a community built around trust and honesty." Secret is an app " to openly share what you're thinking and feeling with your friends. Speak freely, share anything." The Genius of Whisper, the Massively Popular App You Haven't Heard Of. With New Anonymous Social App Secret, the Merit Is in the Message. Two Apps, One Hot Trend [more inside]
"In Silicon Valley, where The Work of creating The Future is sacrosanct, the suggestion that there might be something not entirely normal about this—that it might be a little weird that investors are sinking millions of dollars into a laundry company they had been introduced to over email that doesn't even do laundry; that maybe you don’t really need engineers to do what is essentially a minor household chore—would be taken as blasphemy."
Having taken pictures of more than 6 million miles’ worth of road, Google is more than doubling the amount of global Street View imagery by adding all of its archive photography. The company’s Google Maps Web application will now include a time machine feature where users can move a slider to see all historical images of a place. As much as possible, pictures of the same place have been aligned so they have the same perspective as one another.
Patatap might be the most fun you can have mashing a keyboard.
Conversely, it can be assumed the app might be useful as a sexual enhancement tool. Max Levchin, of PayPal fame, has the new app, Glow. There are, of course, with experience and a little thinking out of the box, alternate possibilities for the thing. Competition in Germany is already working on a competitive app, Clue, for women to likewise track their fertility cycle.
Send Me To Heaven, a new app by Norwegian developer Carot Pop, will probably be the last game you play on your (Android) phone.
Heard: a free iOS app that could solve a lot of arguments, and probably end a lot of marriages. It continuously records audio into a 12-second buffer (extend it to 5 minutes for $1.99), letting you save what you just, um, heard. Part Orwellian, part Chappellian (NSFW).
Stereophoto maker lets you make anaglyphs and stereo animated gifs, like these. (You can control the point of focus with your mouse in the flash versions.) Instructions for making it work on a Mac.
For years in Malibu, CA, homeowners have tried to hide public access points to local beaches in order to prevent people from using them. A recently released app has tipped off the public as to exactly where these access points are, causing an outcry from the homeowners.
"Peter Molyneux has had a long and storied career. As the creator of Populous, Black & White, Fable, and the recent iPhone experiment Curiosity, he's been no stranger to ambitious concepts throughout his 30-year history in the industry. I had a chance to sit down with Peter at E3 this year, and picked his brain about three of the top fart apps on the app store."
HappyPlayTime seeks to rebrand the entire concept of female masturbation through education and light-hearted games (...) At the heart of all this is HPT’s mascot: the pink, fleshy, and gleeful personification of a vagina.
The Story of Christoph Niemann's Petting Zoo App, an illustrated article from The New Yorker. "I had this idea of making a simple line drawing that one could naturally manipulate by touching and swiping. How hard could that be?"