When inspiration strikes, out of the blue, as you’re making coffee or walking the dog, the feeling of uplift and excitement is hard to match. For most of us, these are purely chance moments, when events and surroundings combine to create a spark. But for those in the creative professions, it can’t be like that. There simply isn’t time to wait around for the mental light bulb to flicker into life. For creatives, inspiration needs to be engineered, manufactured even, and most achieve this by collecting inspiring stuff and keeping it nearby.

The scrapbooks and swatches once used for this purpose have now been replaced by digital formats. Some folks go for social (Pinterest), some for private (Icebergs & Ember), but the recurring theme is the clipping of digital files into virtual pinboards of creative ideas.

Strangely, the iPad, a device that seems so suited to visuals and is intuitive in its operation, has yet to see much love in the scrapbooking genre — a fact which an aptly named new app, Curator, wants to change. With a sleek, minimalist interface and simple controls, Curator will certainly appeal to creative folk on an aesthetic level; but what about on a practical one?


I was a huge fan of Rayman: Jungle Run last year when it came out. In fact, I loved it so much that I gave it a near-perfect review, praising its gameplay, visually-arresting art design, and unique twist on the platforming genre. With Rayman: Fiesta Run, Ubisoft is trying to raise the bar again.

The sequel brings a ton of new elements to the game, including swimming and, perhaps regrettably, in-app purchases. This review is a unique opportunity for me to reflect on what worked with the original, what still works, and what the formula is like a year later. Is a sequel necessary? Did the first game need little refinements? Read on to find out.


If you have logged into Facebook recently, you may have noticed a large number of cartoon strips cluttering up your newsfeed. Yeah, those colorful 2D images are called Bitstrips and they have recently gone viral, dominating social networking websites the world over.

With Bitstrips, you can transform yourself into a cartoon character and star in your very own comic strip alongside your friends and family. Admit it, you’re curious. Hit the jump to find out more!


I remember quite clearly how the iPad’s initial release went down in 2010. I told my wife that there was no way I’d buy one because what was the point? And then, a few months later when the 3G model came out to the public, there I was in line to buy one.

I loved that iPad, and the two that followed in my household, an iPad 2 and an iPad mini. But for me, the mini was where it was at, it was just missing that Retina display. Now that the iPad mini has the fabled screen and is available to the public, is it worth the purchase? (more…)

I know we haven’t even celebrated Thanksgiving yet, but Hanukah is next week and it’s less than five weeks till Christmas! Tis’ the season to bake cookies! You’ll be bringing dozens of these sweet treats to work, sending them off with the kids for school parties and donating to church events. During the holiday season the cookie jar should always be full for visiting family. For many, making time to bake a batch of cookies with the kids and leaving them out for Santa is an essential Christmas tradition.

It’s time to get ready for the cookie-baking extravaganza. You’re going to need to stock up on supplies like cookie tins, spices, butter and flour. You’re going to need some foolproof recipes. You’re going to need festive packaging ideas for cookie gifts. Don’t be overwhelmed—there’s an app for that! Martha Stewart Makes Cookies promises to be an “indispensable baking resource,” the bible of cookie baking. Keep reading to find out why.


I never did like Facebook. In fact, I only joined the benighted data-grabber two years after I started tweeting. Perhaps this reluctance was an indication of my desire to communicate, rather than staying up to date with my friends’ latest FarmVille scores. Maybe I didn’t want to be the plaything of an advertising network. Or, I suppose that Zuckerberg might have been right, and I really was so darned anti-social that I detested my friends and never wanted to see their annoying faces again [note: sarcasm].

All the same, I joined. And now, I’ve had enough.

Except, there’s a problem with the Facebook-leaving sentiment, however appealing, fashionable and written about it might be. When you delete your account (…he says, as if such a thing were possible…), you’ll still want to keep in touch with your close friends when you can’t see them, and with your relatives on the other side of the world, who still want to see your latest pictures. You’re going to have to find an alternative.

Okay, so let’s have a think. Ah, yes, of course: Google+.


Most of us now watch drama, comedy, film and sport online and on-demand, in a format that allows us to skip forward and rewind at will. We’re no longer tied to schedules, no longer reliant on DVRs to untie us from those schedules, and no longer bound by the advert breaks those DVRs helped us to avoid.

Unfortunately, news hasn’t joined the party. We still watch live broadcasts in the traditional, inflexible way, and in so doing, we sit through plenty of headlines of no interest. This is a crazy situation for a form of programming which is, perhaps, the most subject critical. The main reason for this illogical status quo is convenience; switching on your TV is easy, but watching news online is not.

This is the problem that Watchup wants to solve. The idea is to draw content from some of the world’s most respected news outlets into one, autoplaying stream, which adapts to match your taste. But does the execution meet the appealing theory?


Whether you play it or not, Call of Duty is a franchise every gamer knows about. For the last few years, the annual November release of the series — this year being Infinity Ward’s Ghosts — is one of the biggest launches of the year and sparks the regular debate on the franchise’s innovation and gameplay depth.

In between the release of 2012’s Black Ops 2 and this year’s Ghosts, Call of Duty once again hit iOS with Strike Team. Joining two iOS versions of the game’s popular Zombies survival mode, Strike Team claims to offer an enticing first and third-person action experience. Let’s see whether it lives up to that avowal. (more…)

Flickr has enjoyed something of a resurgence ever since Marissa Mayer took over as Yahoo!’s CEO. With their excellent Flickr iPhone app and storage limits being increased to a whopping 1TB, the popular photo sharing site is back with a vengeance.

Unfortunately, the experience of using the Flickr website on the iPad, for both browsing photos and making edits to metadata, has always been something of a mixed bag and is usually not a pleasant experience. Flickr Studio aims to bridge the divide between Flickr’s extensive service and your photos, letting you make all sorts of changes to both photo and metadata in an app that really pushes the envelope when it comes to Flickr’s API.


Once in a while, an app comes along that’s so good at what it does that it’s hard to believe its low price. These apps become essentials, favourites, apps we use nearly every day to document the things that matter. For me, Day One is one of those apps. It’s an iPhone app that’s as important to me as the built-in camera, one that changes the way I live and gives me some much-needed time for reflection every day. It’s an app that has changed the way I live my life.

I was so excited to give the iOS 7 update to Day One a shot and see what the team has brought to the app. I wasn’t disappointed. Read on to find out what makes Day One such a winner, and how it changes the way we look at making journals.


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