Thanks to advancements in technology, transportation, and communication, globalization is bringing the world’s populations closer together at an accelerating rate. As this continues though, it is important for us to stay aware of the hardships of those in places where safety is not guaranteed. UNHCR, the United Nations refugee agency, hopes to bring these struggles to light with My Life as a Refugee.
The game casts players as one of three refugees hoping to escape from any number of war-torn countries. As they attempt to find freedom they will be presented with the kinds of dilemmas facing actual refugees. How will they protect their families? What will they do if the smugglers become violent? Will they give up if they are caught by the army after coming so far? Through this virtual journey, players will start to understand why millions of people are so desperate to run, survive, and restart their lives.
“Every minute eight people are force to flee. What would you do?” My Life as a Refugee is available now for free on the App Store.
This week at 148Apps.com, writer Carter Dotson explored all things Zombie with his Favorite Four list. He writes, “May is Zombie Awareness Month. While pop culture seems intent on making us aware of zombies on a regular basis, this is the special month for zombies. May is almost over, but that doesn’t mean there’s not just enough time left to celebrate with some zombie-themed apps.”
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Released: 2011-10-27 :: Category: Games
Meanwhile, everything over at GiggleApps got dotty, as Amy Solomon reviewed Dot Collector, saying, “Dot Collector is a very nice universal app for the youngest children with simple game play, wonderfully bright colors and soothing sounds that babies will enjoy. This app is utterly intuitive to use as players need to simply drag moving dots into a black dot, clearing the board. A new dot is added to each additional level, adding to the game play.”
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Released: 2012-02-28 :: Category: Education
Finally, Kevin Stout on 148Apps.biz reported on the increasing numbers of young children using smartphones. Stout writes, “There’s no such thing as to young when it comes to smartphones and tablets. When keeping in mind the younger audiences when developing apps, even the youngest of children have a high percentage of exposure to mobile devices. An infographic released by Schools.com has reported that 38% of 0-8 year-olds have used tablets or smartphones.”
That’t it for this Memorial Day week. Summer’s here, so keep your eyes on 148Apps.com, our Twitter and Facebook feeds to make sure you get the latest app news, reviews and contests. See you next week, tovarish!
It was Earth Day this past Sunday, so what better time to check out the second in the Painting with Time app series: Climate Change. The app has 17 pre-set images of geographical regions that have been severely impacted by global warming. If one has any reservations about the veracity of Earth’s rising temperatures going in, toying with this app should lay them to rest.
Each image first appears as a tracing. Users then pick one of eight brushes or pre-cut segments, but instead of painting with tubes of color, we brush on the effects of time. The consequences are jaw dropping. The app uses high quality photographs of each locale from two time periods. Some are decades apart, others like the Mississippi River only a year. Users can uncover the overlapping views one at a time by filling in the canvas quickly with broad strokes to compare, or get creative and paint or break up the image artfully. Each photo comes with information on the region and the impact climate change is having there. There is even a multi-media presentation on the issue in general.
For those who don’t want to be lectured, and prefer to see evidence with their own eyes, Painting with Time: Climate Change is perfect. For believers and even activists, it provides a useful teaching and display tool.
This week at 148Apps.com, two great new apps for kids were featured: AutisMate and Ruckus Reader. Writer Jennifer Allen had this to say about AutisMate: “AutisMate was designed by Jonathan Izak, someone whose younger brother and first cousin who have autism. It allows users to add their own pictures, videos and voice recordings to the app in order to create scenes that help promote positive interactions.”
Kevin Stout contributed the following about Ruckus Reader: “When a child is in possession of a device as versatile as an iPad, it could be just as distracting as it is productive. A new series of apps by Ruckus, Ruckus Reader, has been released that help parents keep track of their children’s progress through Ruckus Reader books.”
Read more about AutisMate here and about Ruckus Readerhere.
iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Released: 2012-04-16 :: Category: Books
Meanwhile, at GiggleApps.com, Amy Solomon was investigating the hidden joys of Smash Your Food HD, “Smash Your Food HD is a highly entertaining app for iPad dedicated to the better understanding of the amounts of sugar, salt and oil found within foods that are commonly eaten. With five levels included, players are asked to determine the amounts of these substances by reviewing the nutritional facts of each food in question and then watching as these foods get pulverized – much to the delight of children.”
iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Released: 2012-03-20 :: Category: Education
And last, but certainly not least, 148Apps.biz writer Kevin Stout reported on Apple’s recent change in policy regarding iAd revenues: “Before April 1st, developers earned 60% of the iAd revenue they generated within iAd-supported apps. Now developers will receive 70% of iAd revenues, according to Apple’s Developer Center. Developers will now receive this higher percentage for both app download and iAd revenues. This is likely to be a rather large boost in income for developers that use iAd as their primary source of revenue for their free apps.”
And, to paraphrase Cronkite, that’s the way it was. Keep track of all the latest happenings across the iOS and mobile universe by following us on Twitter and liking us on Facebook. You’ll be glad you did. Until next time, watch out for the hoary hosts of Hoggoth!
LazyTown, the popular children’s show about health and well-being, now has an iPad storybook filled with interactive features. LazyTown’s Friends Forever BooClip is a digital book app that not only narrates a story but includes animations, video clips, music, and more interactive features all about the LazyTown TV series.
This particular LazyTown adventure follows Stephanie and the new play park she’s created for her friends. Stephanie competes with her rival Robbie, who entices the friends away from Stephanie’s park to an attraction of his own with the promise of fake prizes.
In addition to the interactive features that the kid’s will enjoy, parents will also feel good about this app. The development of the LazyTown’s Friends Forever BooClip app was supervised by psychologists, teachers, consultants, and linguists. So parents can be assured that their child’s experience is safe and educational.
Other BooClips include Garfield’s BooClips and The Bible BooClips. BooClips are “edutainment” apps that enhance the reading experience for children with interactive features, word for word narration, and more.
When a child is in possession of a device as versatile as an iPad, it could be just as distracting as it is productive. A new series of apps by Ruckus, Ruckus Reader, has been released that help parents keep track of their children’s progress through Ruckus Reader books.
There aren’t many Ruckus Reader apps available yet, but the ones that have been released include big names like Transformers, Crayola, and My Little Pony. The Ruckus Reader apps send weekly “Reader Meter” emails to parents (information is also available on the website) with information about their children on subjects like phonics, print awareness, fluency, alphabetic knowledge, sequencing, and story comprehension.
Parents will receive “Reader Meter Progress Snapshots” for free with a Ruckus Reader account. For full “Reader Meter Progress Reports” and unlimited access to their entire Ruckus Reader iLibrary, parents can subscribe to a Ruckus library membership for 6 months at $24.99. Both types of accounts can support up to four children who may access the books across various app and devices.
SparkNotes have saved many a student in need of help as they study various pieces of literature. Figuring out the subtext behind some classic pieces of work isn’t always immediately obvious, and these notes can make all the difference.
That useful helping hand is now available through the SparkNotes iOS app. 50 pre-installed study guides are already available with the option of viewing hundreds of others online. These guides can then be downloaded for offline use if the user so wishes.
Numerous different works worthy of studying are included here, like Shakespeare and Orwell. Poetry and Philosophy is similarly covered along with short stories to appeal to all arts students.
Search functionality is extensive, making it easy to browse through different sections of the guides from thematic analysis to scene by scene breakdown.
There’s a social element, too, with users able to share their location and what they’re currently studying, thus encouraging friends to gather round for a study group session.
Happi Papi, developer of education apps for kids, has recently started an App Evaluation Program for Schools where the developer makes Happi Papi apps available to educators for free. Interested educators can sign up for the program here.
Happi Papi has already started releasing free apps for the program. Over 100 schools have already received their first promo code links to Happi 123, the first game available for the program.
Happi Papi is an active member of the Moms With Apps (MWA) forum of family developers. Five other developers have joined the program created by Happi Papi. All developers in the program share the common vision of creating children’s apps without ads, in-app purchases, or links.
Happi Papi is a joint venture of two dads creating quality apps for children. They call their apps “edutainment.” They create learning environments for children between the ages of 2 and 8 that are both educational and fun. Happi Papi apps include Happi 123, Happi Spells, and Happi Reads.
It’s a little cliched to say but Starry Night Interactive Animation is utterly beautiful to look at and interact with.
Taking one of Vincent Van Gogh’s most famous pieces of art, Starry Night, iPad users can watch the creation move as well as interact with it themselves.
It’s positively delightful, both peaceful and wondrous with a similarly attractive musical score. Supporting multi touch, users can interact with Starry Night with up to ten fingers at once, making it an ideal app to use with others.
Using a finger to ripple through the artwork is a mesmerising experience, even despite the occassional moments of blurriness.
While I’ve yet to get a chance to see the real Starry Night, this app is a great substitution in the meantime. It’d be great to see other works of art implemented in a similar way in the future. It makes art accessible for the masses and brings it to life for children.
Check out Starry Night Interactive Animation now, priced at $1.99.
Fairlady Media just released a new educational game, Grandma’s Garden.
Grandma’s Garden features Granny and her gang of whacky veggies teaching preschool and kindergarten level skills via five included mini-games (many of which are vegetable-themed). Educational skills that are covered in the app include shapes, colors, letters, counting, and memory. These games are “Match the Vegetables,” “Color the Vegetable,” “Count the Vegetables,” “First Letters,” and “Shapes.”
Players are showered with positive words and funny, Granny-typical gifts. The players are rewarded with items from Granny’s purse including candy, toys, and other grandmother-oriented items (lipstick, perfume, and more). The goal of the game is to provide a pure and sweet experience for children to learn kindergarten and preschool skills.
I think we all know by now that technology is pretty awesome, as well as a great educational aid. Thanks to the beauty of touch based controls, very young children can easily reap the benefits from certain apps. One potentially ideal app for children aged 3 and up is CookieCoo Dancing Star.
CookieCoo Dancing Star is all about teaching kids to sing and play along with a number of different educational songs from the Hokey Pokey to Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes to other classics like Mary Had a Little Lamb and I Can Sing a Rainbow, available through an in-app purchase.
The songs teach kids some valuable tips and they also get to improve their motor skills as they have to match the rhythm on screen. Best of all, they’ll have fun doing it!
CookieCoo Dancing Star is priced at $0.99 for either the iPhone or iPad version. In-app purchases are then available to purchase extra song packs covering colors, animals, toys and numbers, each priced at $0.99.
The non-profit Khan Academy has released an eponymous app for the iPad, which offers free educational how-to videos on many subjects. The app currently offers over 2800 videos, designed to educate in the fields of math, science, humanities, and standardized test preparation. Videos largely consist of screencasts that try to explain various topics, and go step-by-step through each topic, as explained by founder Salman Khan and others appointed by the foundation to help create content for other subjects.
The videos on iPad support AirPlay to a remote display, can be downloaded for offline access, and shared to Facebook and Twitter. The videos also offer scripts that correspond to the various points in each video, which helps with not just going back to repeat a specific part of a video, but also opens up accessibility to those with hearing-impairments. It is also possible to log in using a Facebook or Google account to synchronize progress with the Khan Academy website with videos watched. The app is available for completely free.
Zinc Roe Design has released a new app for iPad that can help out with education. Entitled Doodlecast Pro, this is an app that allows users to draw on the screen, with various colored backgrounds, pointer options, and the ability to import backgrounds from the Camera Roll. The catch is that all of this can be recorded by the app. Users can doodle to their heart’s content, and have the drawings recorded and saved, with the ability to record audio from the mic along with the video. The video can then be saved to the Camera Roll, emailed, or uploaded directly to YouTube.
This app could have amazing applications in the field of education. Teachers could use this to record math lessons, by drawing out problems, and providing detailed explanations of how they work, which the students can then rewatch at their convenience. Science teachers could use it to point out the features of atoms and molecules, or to point out specific features on diagrams, again with voice commentary included. Students could make use of the app, as well: they could use this to record their notes or homework, and go back to see not just the solutions to their work, but to see their thought process in doing it. Videos can be saved in their crisp high-resolution quality as drawn on the iPad, or in lower qualities to save space.
This is an advanced version of Zinc Roe’s earlier Doodlecast for Kids app, and with some more of these advanced features, and design intended for serious usage, their technology can be used to everyone’s benefit. This is the kind of app that shows how education can take advantage of the latest technology, and how the iPad in particular could be a major part of the way that education is improved across the world. This app has that kind of potential. Check it out in motion below.
Having grown up in a household of educators and now with numerous friends who teach, I’ve quickly learnt the importance of educating students in new and exciting ways. It keeps information interesting and relevant rather than becoming potentially stuffy and staid.
There are numerous ways to ensure this but one of the latest and most exciting ways is that of Rover from iSwifter.
Rover provides cloud-based streaming through iSwifter’s technology, enabling iPads to stream Flash content alongside other useful education tools. Free to download, it’s targeted towards the K-12 education sector having partnered with education brands such as Discovery Education, Mathletics and Funbrain. Partnering with such brands immediately makes Rover an immensely useful resource of offering both fun and knowledge without the child even realising how much they are learning.
Fundamentally, it means that children can use a classroom iPad to access such content rather than be restricted to the PC.
The app is easy to set up and offers a firewall-friendly solution to work around existing IT systems in schools while still maintaining the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA). It is worth mentioning that a Wi-Fi connection is required to use Rover even for those with 3G iPads. It’s a small requirement, however, for an immensely useful educational tool.
Using the app is similarly easy to get to grips with thanks to digital textbook controls including a D-Pad, visual feedback for finger taps and support for a split keyboard form of control. Rover can even be paired with SMART board interactive whiteboards for added functionality. Each cross section of schooling is viewable separately from Elementary School to Middle and High School.
With increasing numbers of teachers using iPads within the classroom environment, Rover ensures that children have the best tools to learn with and in a fun and safe environment, too.
Rover is available now for the iPad and it’s free to download.
Educators who use new technology in the classroom are awesome. I remember one of my journalism professors regularly using his iPad as a tool in his lectures. I thought doing so was an innovative and creative way of utilizing the at-the-time new device.
Vito Technology dropped us a line this week to let us know that its own apps are increasingly being used by educators and students in the pursuit of learning. The studio’s three apps, Star Walk, Solar Walk, and >Geo Walk, are being called excellent educational tools. News of the apps being popular educational tools, though, doesn’t come too surprising. I had played around with Solar Walk in particular and was quite impressed.
In particular, it seems the two astronomy apps have been the most useful according to feedback from educators.
Star Walk uses the iPhone and augmented reality technology to give users a new way at looking at the solar system – from the perspective here on Earth. Additionally, the app contains an amazing amount of astrology information, including information on stars and constellations.
“Students at Hawaii Preparatory Academy are among the many who are working with Star Walk. Seeing and learning about the night sky and the star systems in a highly interactive way creates immediate learning to many in a way that has never been possible. Through the time machine and search function, students can discover constellations in a way that was never possible before. Interactive education is a great way for students to learn, and this app delivers a truly interactive star system. Many educators are now introducing apps such as Star Walk into the classroom to enhance the education experience, and to keep students engaged and interested,” said Dave V of TopEducationalApps.com.
Solar Walk, meanwhile, gives users an up-close look at the planets of our solar system, along with other details of the galaxy, including satellites orbiating the planet, moons, solar systems and other phenomenon.
“Solar Walk gives your students a realistic look at the Solar System. The time machine feature is excellent and will help students visualize the changes in the Solar System over time. Let your students take a virtual field trip to the planet of their choice to explore and report back to the class about. Students can become astronauts and take a virtual “rocket” ride, flying to the planet of choice, getting an in-depth look at the planet, and exploring each of the planets moons,” said Smartlearning Teacher of Science at Priority Community School Weston Super Mare.
It’s exciting to see how the iPhone and apps like these are shaping the way students are learning today.
There was a vast profusion of cool stuff happening across the 148Apps network this week, but the top of the top was the culmination of our 2011 Best App Ever awards. Head honcho Jeff Scott writes, “It was an amazing year. With over 1.5 million votes cast (over three times the number cast last year) and a record number of nominations, we now have the winners of the 2011 Best App Ever Awards. Thanks to all that voted, nominated, and made these fantastic apps!”
Kid-friendly GiggleApps featured a review of Fun Clock-Learn to Tell Time. Reviewer Amy Solomon writes, “Few apps actually tackle explaining the true concept of telling time they way this app does. After watching the included video in Fun Clock – Learn to Tell Time, children will be will well on their way to understanding how to read a analogue clock. As a parent, I don’t think I could have explained this better myself, also wishing that this video had been around when I was a child.”
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Released: 2011-09-22 :: Category: Education
Finally, over at Android Rundown, Carter Dotson took a closer look at Apple’s recent iBooks education initiative and evaluated it for what it could mean for the Android platform. Dotson writes, “It may not have been the sexiest announcement, but Android supporters – manufacturers and users alike – should not underestimate Apple’s education gambit. Their big push into education with iBooks 2 being optimized for textbooks (both the reading and selling thereof) and iTunes U offering deeper integration with college courses could be the necessary roots they have to lay down for long-term success at the expense of Android.”
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Released: 2010-04-02 :: Category: Books
And that’s the week that was. Don’t forget to read a full list of Best App Ever winners at www.bestappever.com, and keep following us on Twitter and Facebook for all the contests, news and reviews you can eat. I’ll be playing Jetpack Joyride non-stop until next week, but I’ll see you back here then.
The developer of Geom-E-Tree is back with a new app that combines artwork with the dark art of mathematics. PolygonFlux works using geometric principles to create what are called fluxagons, designs that are formed by vectors bouncing off the insides of a polygon. Users determine the starting point, determine the angle that it will fire off at, and watch as fluxagons are formed. Equilateral polygons can be formed in a number of sides from three to fourteen. The number of bounces can be controlled by pinching in and out, and double-tapping to return to 300 bounces, as higher numbers of bounces can cause even the latest iOS hardware to lag under the weight of the calculations. Precise angle measurements can be made as well; by tapping or swiping on different parts of the screen, the angles can be adjusted in degrees, minutes, and seconds.
There are a variety of themes to use with PolygonFlux to add style to the fluxagons, including “Fat Binary,” which uses alternating white and black lines to look like the design from Eddie Van Halen’s guitar. Fluxagons can be emailed to other people, saved to the Camera Roll, or saved to an internal album to be called back up specifically. PolygonFlux is available now for the iPad.
I’m a big fan of apps that make people’s lives easier. All the better is an app that genuinely improves someone’s life, not just in terms of convenience but in terms of a significant and positive life change.
One such app for some parents is that of FindMe(Autism). It’s an app that’s designed to help young, autistic children practice simple social skills that many other people take for granted. Requiring no language or reading skills, it’s accessible to the vast majority of autistic children with access to an iPad.
The app is simple to play with the aim being to find a person in a scene and tap on them. As the levels progress, distracting objects emerge such as plants or animals thus educating the child to focus on their aim in order to be rewarded.
It sounds so basic but it’s something that UK broadcaster, the BBC has reported has helped many families. The app helps encourage the children to focus on other people and their needs while also boosting their self confidence and technological skills.
Autism is a very individual condition so there’s no guarantee that it will help every young autistic child but considering FindMe(Autism) is a free app to download, it’s well worth a look. It may well help hugely.
This week at 148Apps.com, site founder Jeff Scott welcomed the Kindle Fire into the tablet fold with an overview of his impressions of the device. Scott says, “…while the Kindle Fire is around 40 percent the cost of a base level iPad, it’s capabilities are even less. It just so happens that those capabilities match up well with what a typical consumer uses a tablet device for. Because of that, the Kindle Fire will be a strong competitive device to the iPad. When it comes down to it, it’s the cost that matters to a very large portion of the buying public, not the capabilities.”
Meanwhile, our sister site, GiggleApps, took a closer look at a new educational app for children, iLuv Drawing Animals. Reviewer Amy Solomon writes, “iLuv Drawing Animals is a nice choice for kids who are interested in learning the very basics of drawing cartoony animals that are cute and relatively easy to draw. I like how these illustrations are broken down into smaller shapes that kids will easily understand and have had experience with, and the narration is pleasant and easy to follow.”
iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Released: 2011-10-10 :: Category: Education
Finally, on AndroidRundown, Carter Dotson announced the public availability of Google Music, an interesting development for all music lovers, no matter the device. Dotson writes, “Most importantly, this means that Google is now in the business of one of the big pillars of media, and it addresses a gaping hole in the Android Market. With videos and books already addressed, now the store is complete with music to go along with apps. Google is directly putting themselves in competition with iTunes, and they are making their operating system much closer in terms of features to iOS devices. This was a necessary move for Google.”
As we head into the week of Thanksgiving here in the US, remember that you can still enter to win an iPhone 4S, courtesy of 148Apps and Gameloft. To enter, just become a 148Apps and Gameloft Facebook fan – www.facebook.com/gameloft and www.facebook.com/148apps.
Or you can follow both of us on Twitter as well at www.twitter.com/148apps and www.twitter.com/gameloft. Then, write the following public tweet: “Upgrade to a 4S yet? Follow @Gameloft & @148Apps & RT for a chance to win an iPhone 4S! Gameloft gaming on the 4S: http://glft.co/uIR3Y1″
See you next week, true believers! Start thawing that turkey!
It’s tough to find new and exciting ways of educating children. Bringing subjects alive can make all the difference which is precisely where technology and, more precisely, the iPad can help. Courtesy of Emantras comes Frog Dissection and Cell and Cell Structure to make science that bit more interesting for middle school children.
Frog Dissection is a less messy and kinder to frogs alternative to the age old way of learning biology: dissecting a frog. The app offers vivid 3D imaging an helpful step by step instructions which help ensure that the app is an accurate simulation of the real thing. Interactive quizzes and plenty of information on the frog’s organs and an anatomical comparison with humans makes this an ideal tool for science fans.
Cell and Cell Structure continues the biology theme by teaching everything possible about cells, their structure and their functions. Attractive graphics keep things interesting and interactive flashcards and quizzes reinforce the knowledge.
They’re both out now. Frog Dissection is priced at $3.99 while Cell and Cell Structure is $1.99.
Perfect Pitch Piano teaches something that I’ve been trying to learn for years: to play the piano by ear. There’s a corny joke in there. Musicians still need their hands to play the instrument, not their ears, but Perfect Pitch Piano does go some way to teaching those interested to play a tune.
Basically, Perfect Pitch Piano plays a melody and then leaves the user to play it back. It’s a subtle teaching tool but one that should work well with practice. In its endeavours, Perfect Pitch Piano teaches users to learn all the fundamental building blocks of music playing such as intervals and timings.
Classic songs can be learnt through the app such as Amazing Grace, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and Mary Had a Little Lamb, ideal starting places for beginners.
Those a little more experienced aren’t left out, however, as they can adjust the key and tempo to make things more challenging.
On sale at $1.99, Perfect Pitch Piano is bound to be an ideal tool for those learning to play the piano.
We all know and have used the Encyclopaedia Britannica at some point. It’s a fantastic resource of information with an absolutely huge amount of knowledge contained within. What some people may not realise is that it’s over 200 years with the first edition having been released between 1768 and 1771 in Scotland.
Technology moves on however and while the Encyclopaedia Britannica is still available in book form (in its 15th edition), iPad fans will be thrilled to see that the app version of Encyclopaedia Britannica is just as useful for anyone with a great thirst for knowledge.
Providing over 80,000 carefully fact checked articles, all manners of different subjects are catered for. There’s everything from information on famous landmarks to statistics about skateboarding. Encyclopaedia Britannica ensures that its knowledge is always accurate thanks to an extensive list of contributors that include over 100 Nobel Laureates plus numerous subject gurus such as Bill Clinton, Desmond Tutu and skateboarding legend Tony Hawk.
Information is provided through interesting mediums and not just via text with photographs, diagrams and charts plentiful. A LinkMap means that users can explore articles that are connected to each other through a dynamic view interface. There’s also a neat way of checking out what happened on the revelant day of the year at a glance which is the ideal way to set the brain racing off in a quest to gain more knowledge.
While Encyclopaedia Britannica is a free to download app, users who wish to gain the full benefits of the app will need to pay a pretty reasonable $1.99 a month subscription fee. For those not keen on paying, they do at least gain 100 free articles plus the first 100 words of each article as part of a taster of what’s available. Considering the web version of the Encyclopaedia Britannica is a lot more than this, that’s pretty good value for money for a huge wealth of knowledge.
Encyclopaedia Britannica is available now for the iPad.
Most people are content to go through with their day-to-day activities without really considering how their bodies do what they do. It’s a complicated set of systems that keep us moving, and one that lends itself well to Edutainment. Which is probably why Helen Sell and frukti Games made Good Blood!
Players will embark on a first-person journey through the blood stream, learning about the circulatory system along the way. Of course, it’s not just about learning the ins-and-outs of blood cells and bacteria. There’s also gaming to be had, with viruses that need exterminating and wounds that need plugging. With white and red blood cells, naturally.
Curious about blood and they way it does what it does? Looking for a corridor styled “shooter” with a lot of blood (*rimshot*)? Then take a look at Good Blood!. Or at least check out the trailer below. This amalgamation of learning and video gaming is available in the App Store right now for $1.
As a female technology buff I feel especially bad that I didn’t realise it was Ada Lovelace Day on 7th October, a day that aims to raise the profile of women in science, technology, engineering and maths. Ada Lovelace is widely regarded as the first computer programmer. Way back in 1842 she translated Italian Mathematician Luigi Menabrea’s description of Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine. Her fascination in Babbage’s work led to her developing an early form of computer programming thanks to her powerful mathematical mind. She tragically died at the young age of 36 due to cancer.
The reason for this history lesson other than to educate? There’s a light hearted app out called Lovelace & Babbage that aims to provide part entertaining comic book, part informative and educational tellings of their lives and experiences. After all, the best way to learn is to not realise it’s happening!
The comic book is consistently funny and intelligent in its portrayal and certainly makes for a great change from more conventional graphic novels. It’s a free app so an ideal excuse to give it a read. Users then have the option of paying $2.99 for further storytelling in the form of The Client. For those who enjoy it, there’s a new adventure coming out in early 2012 entitled User Experience.
Simple to use, this app opens up with a row of letters, A-Z, found on the top of the screen, which can be scrolled through with a finger, tapping a letter to choose. A window center screen is the focus here, where one will view these impeccably done letter videos. The background used can also be transformed with a tap to a number of vivid patterns, bold textures, or colors each unique to itself. An artist’s easel can also be touched to bring the player to a section of the app which allows children to trace the letter in question…
ABC for the Little Scientist for the iPad is a nice, interactive letters app with a science theme. Like other apps such as this, ABC for the Little Scientist consists of letters a to z, each illustrated with its own interactive page where one can tap the letter or word in question to listen to narration, here of either a male or female voice as well as to look for interactive hotspots. I like the fact that this app uses unique words not typically found in apps like this but instead tackles more complex ideas such as “connection” as in internet connection, this page including a roaming satellite and the earth from a view in space. A version for iPhone is also available.