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September/October 2013

Regular Departments 4 Editor's Message 6 Meet the Writers 8 iStats, News, and Other Tidbits 10 Caption Contest 12 Photo Contest Winners 96 iView: Evernote Meets GTD

iDevice News 14

Lucky Number 7? Apple changes the game with their newest iOS version.



Introducing Back to School


Getting an iEducation

The Death of Skeuomorphism Will iOS 7 usher in a new era of design?


The Back-to-School Issue

CTIA 2013 Award Winners

Apps and websites that further your education.


Educational App Roundup 22 standout apps for students of all ages.

Our best-of-show picks from CTIA.


Track all your assignments with these handy apps. missing

Top Tips 20

Little-Known iPhone and iPad Tricks Eight handy tips for iOS users.



Surviving Dorm Life Apps and gear to help you make it through college.

Troubleshooting Help Online Great online resources for help with your iDevice.

Organizational Apps


Educational Games Play and learn with these fun educational apps.


iPad Cases for Students iPad cases built with students in mind.


Cool Carryalls Tech-ready messenger bags and backpacks.


Textbooks Gone Digital Exploring the shift towards mobile learning.

Bluetooth Speakers for Every Room pages 64-69


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Check Out iOS 7! pages 14-19

Best Apps 54


Mastering Twitter for iOS

22 Stephanie LaBorde Pierotti 60 Sadie Cornelius 84 Kevin Gilmore

A comprehensive guide to tweeting from your iDevice.


Using Evernote Save and organize notes on the go with this popular app.


iPhoneography Apps Apps and gear for capturing the perfect shot.


Great Gear 64

Creating Great Apps App Development for Non-Programmers Exploring the new offerings of iOS 7 and Xcode 5.

Bluetooth Speakers Top speaker picks for every room in the house.


Gear for the iMusician Keep on rockin’ with these essential accessories.

iLove it, iUse it 74

OK Go Rocks a New App The band talks about their hit app, Say the Same Thing.


A Visit to the E-Library Finding free library resources through your iDevice.

Top Bags & Cases for Students pages 42-48

Educational Games pages 39-41

iPhone L if e S e pte m be r-O c tobe r 2 0 1 3


Editor's Message Making the Grade I took Calculus my senior year of high school. Though the class was full of infuriatingly smart overachievers, I was a slacker who was more interested in daydreaming. I never did the homework, I slept during lectures, and I did just the bare minimum necessary to pass the class. My only motivation was that, were I to fail and get kicked out of the class, I wouldn’t be able to play on the tennis team. Like most high schoolers, I didn’t have a 10-year master plan. I didn’t ponder the significant life lessons that I could potentially take away from the wonderful world of mathematics; no one my age did. Nevertheless, halfway through the academic year, I had an experience that shook me out of my case of senioritis. I had just gotten a test back, which I’d failed with a near-passing grade of 67. The nerd—I mean classmate— next to me got a 98, which of course, he wasn’t happy about. I snatched the paper from his hands to see the correct answers, and sure enough, after a couple of minutes, I understood what I’d missed and why. As we were walking out of the classroom, the thought hit me, “I am walking out of this class with the exact same level of knowledge about this test, and yet he’s getting an A and I’m getting an F.” I then started to question the real role of education, mainly because an aversion to classwork opens the door to such philosophical inquiries. “If the goal is to educate,” I thought, “and I’ve just achieved the same level of education about this specific subject as my peer, shouldn’t we both get the same grade?” I realized then that the system was set up to evaluate not only if you’ve learned the material, but also when you’ve learned it. Naturally, I thought this was unfair, because I’d barely missed the arbitrary deadline for knowledge (otherwise known as a test). I panicked and thought, “What happens if I end up learning everything after I get tested? Whatever will I do?”

Boredom: The Silent Killer of Dreams

Alex Cequea

Editor in Chief Looking back I realize that, like many kids today, I was just bored and didn’t have a reason to care. If I’d cared, I would have been engaged and would iPhone Life magazine, probably have done a lot better. In fact, I was lucky to have engaging teachers throughout most of my childhood, and I attribute my curiosity and inquisitive nature to their relentless pursuit of new ideas. Today, every child has countless ways to engage with any academic subject. The Internet is a universal catalog for every imaginable school of thought, and mobile technology puts it all at our fingertips. With the iPhone and the iPad, we have the power to engage our children in ways that were never before possible.

Shifting to iEducation According to EdTech (, 95% of teachers believe that online tools improve student engagement. With enrollment in online education growing 14 times faster than overall higher education, it’s easy to see that this field will only continue to grow and adapt at a rapid pace. We have the tools to drastically transform our educational systems and give every child the opportunity to be fully engaged. In today’s world, you need only a handheld device to succeed in school. Ѷ

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i P h o n e L i f e S e ptember-October 2013

iPhone L if e S e pte m be r-O c tobe r 2 0 1 3


Meet Our Writers Todd Bernhard

Cornelius Fortune

Kevin McNeish

Siva Om

Daniel W. Rasmus

Founder, No Tie Software Article page 14

Award-Winning Journalist Article page 70

iOS Developer and Trainer Article page 82

Web Designer and Writer Article page 46

Strategist and Industry Analyst Articles pages 54, 64, 79

Rebecca Santiago

John Toma

Brittany Vincent

Mike Wewerka

Writer and Editor Article page 35

Professional Photographer Article page 61

Freelance Writer Article page 39

Founder of Article page 32

iPhone Life Staff David Averbach

Nina Benjamin

Alex Cequea

Hal Goldstein

Jim Karpen

Publisher and CEO Articles pages 18, 74

Associate Editor Articles pages 30, 42

Editor in Chief Article page 20

Senior Editor, Founder Articles pages 58, 96

Online Editor/Columnist Articles pages 26, 49, 85

Write for iPhone Life 6

i P h o n e L i f e S e ptember-October 2013

i am a multi-tasking charging machine. Stay fully charged with the iPL10. This dual charging Stereo FM clock radio audio system with the new Lightning Connector lets you dock the latest iPhone or iPod. Plus, with its USB port, you can charge and play earlier generations too.




Proudly Designed and Engineered in the USA

iHome is a registered trademark of SDI Technologies, Inc. Lightning is a trademark of Apple Inc. iPhone and iPod are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. All other marks are trademarks of their respective owners.


Around the Office What Was Your Proudest Moment in School?

News, Stats, Tidbits & more

Janet Joyce Ad Sales Specialist “When I graduated from college. I didn’t think it was any big deal until I dressed up in that gold cap and gown and accepted my diploma!”

The Numbers 88

Alex Cequea Editor in Chief “When I made the middle school tennis team in 7th grade, even though I’d only been playing tennis for two months!”

Douglas C. Engelbart, inventor of the computer mouse, passed away on July 2, 2013, at the age of 88. Engelbart created the first computer mouse in 1964 and unveiled it in 1968 at the Fall Joint Computer Conference in San Francisco. The idea occurred to him while brainstorming ways to move an onscreen cursor at a computer graphics conference. Apple helped to make the mouse a standard computer accessory when they shipped it as part of the original Macintosh in 1984.

Nina Benjamin Associate Editor “An epic two-day spelling bee in 4th grade. Since the other finalist and I wouldn’t miss any words, we had to continue the next day with written spelling tests. Eventually I spelled “sphinx” wrong, so I took home second place, but hey, I was just proud of myself for spelling “staphylococcus” right, having never heard it before.”

600 MILLION During their opening keynote at this year’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), Apple shared some surprising statistics. Among them was the fact that the company has sold 600 million iOS devices to date. This number is a significant leap from last year’s total of 350 million.

Unique Accessory Yellow Jacket Stun Gun Case (From $109, Say you’re walking along and someone tries to rob you. Would your instinct be to unleash 650 thousand volts of pure fury from your iPhone case? That’s what the makers of the Yellow Jacket Stun Gun hope. Their unique case features two sharp electrodes that discharge a bright and painful electrical charge. Dual safety features help prevent accidental discharges, and the case itself is a charger, extending your iPhone’s life for up to one full charge. 8

i P h o n e L i f e S e ptember-October 2013

QUICK NEWS Low-Cost iPhone Coming? The rumored low-cost iPhone, also referred to as the “iPhone Lite,â€? is apparently getting a few new colors in its hypothetical lineup. A leak from Chinese website showed what looks like the iPhone in a green plastic casing, and new pics with different colors seem to be coming out that support the rumor. Keep in mind that these could be either Chinese clones or Apple prototypes, which Apple tends to create and then disregard when they settle on a model they want to ďŹ nalize. If it exists, we predict that that the iPhone Lite would be unveiled in September, and cost around $300 unsubsidized.









Listen Up! Noise-Cancelling Earbuds May Be on the Horizon A new patent application ďŹ led by Apple in February shows a pair of headphones that readjusts sound depending on how they ďŹ t in a user’s ear. According to the patent, the earbuds would use a small mic to measure the ambient sound around the person and adjust the sound accordingly.








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Celebrity Confessions Via Twitter: Dane Cook @DaneCook Candy Crush is like making a new best friend, until you reach level 30, then it becomes a greedy loser who demands cash to hangout. Emmy Rossum @emmyrossum It's enough already with the candy crush, I need my life back. Toni Braxton @tonibraxton Guys! Someone send me some lives on Candy Crush! I'm stuck on level 40 :/ Michael Huff @Huffy247 Any news on Dwight to my Mavs? I just downloaded candy crush and it has all my attention right now.

Game Info and Stats:

Quad Graphics, 1700 James Savage Rd., Midland, MI 48640 USA 800-448-4288


Curtis Circulation Company, 760 River Rd., New Milford, NJ 07646 USA 201-634-7400


Carl Kopf & Associates 203-944-9466 iPhone Life (ISSN 1949-2014) is published bi-monthly, 6 times a year, Jan/Feb, Mar/Apr, May/ Jun, Jul/Aug, Sep/Oct, Nov/Dec by Mango Life Media at 402 North B St. #108, Fairfield, IA 52556, USA. Periodicals postage paid at Fairfield, Iowa, and at additional mailing offices. Subscription rates payable in U.S. dollars, checks drawn on a U.S. bank, or by credit card—one year: $15.97, two years: $24.97. Postage: United States free; Canada and Mexico add $6 per year; outside North America, add $18 per year. Please allow four to six weeks for receipt of first issue. Executive, Editorial, Circulation, Advertising, Marketing Offices: 402 North B St. #108, Fairfield, IA 52556. Telephone: 641-472-6330, Fax: 641-472-1879. Š Copyright 2013 , Mango Life Media, all rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written permission. Reasonable efforts are made to provide accurate and useful information, but the reader must make his or her own investigations and decisions; the Publisher and Editorial Staff cannot assume any responsibility or liability for the use of information contained herein. POSTMASTER: Please send address changes to iPhone Life, Mango Life Media, 402 North B St. #108, Fairfield, IA 52556. Cover Stock Photos: Hand with iPhone: Š Backpack: Š Back to School crest and section icon artwork created by Mikaila Maidment.

(Free, with in-app purchases, Currently #1 Top-Grossing app in the App Store 6.7 million daily active users Over 600 million games played daily Estimated daily revenue of $632,867 (according to Think Gaming) iPhone L if e S e pte m be r-O c tobe r 2 0 1 3


Illustration by Mikaila Maidment,

“Your caption here” Send us a clever caption for the cartoon above, and we’ll feature our favorite entries in the next issue. The winner will receive a $20 iTunes Gift Card! Send all captions to


i P h o n e L i f e S eptember-October 2013

July/August 2013 Caption Winner: "No need, wicked stepmother, I have already been poisoned by Apple!" Submitted by Jennifer Edwall

Runners-Up: "OK, Glass... tell Siri I asked for a backspace position on Apple, not a basket of poison apples." Submitted by Daniel Enos "OK Glass, get me the phone number for the local prince!" Submitted by Brad Hamilton Thanks to everyone who sent in their funny captions—we had a blast reading them all!

iPhone Lif e S e pte m be r-O c tobe r 2 0 1 3


iPhone Photography Contest Winners To enter our iPhone photograpy contest and get the voting details, please visit, or email your iPhone or iPad photo to The Top 3 Will Receive the Following Prizes:

Photo Contest 1st Place

Gallery-quality print of their photograph courtesy of ($80 value).

By Rob Sarsorito An OlloClip quick-connect lens solution for the iPhone and iPod Touch that includes ďŹ sheye, wide-angle and macro lenses ($69.99 value,


i P hone L i f e September-October 2013

2nd Place

Photo Contest Finalists

By Jose Luis Rojas

By John DeRosa

By Jason Coulson

By Jeremy Powery

3rd Place

By Jon Gardner

By Marc Geyer

By Sudhanshu Sonwane

By William Walton

By Makaylie Coble iPhone L if e S e pte m be r-O c tobe r 2 0 1 3


Lucky Number


Apple Changes the Game with iOS 7 By Todd Bernhard

Once again,

Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) has come and gone. But the real magic will happen in a few months, when Apple’s new (and perhaps improved) operating system is released to the public. The highlight of the conference, which sold out in a record 71 seconds, was the announcement and demo of iOS 7, which will arrive in the fall. While Apple didn’t announce any new iPhone or iPad models at WWDC, this complete redesign of iOS attempts to make existing iDevices seem brand new. As we’ll discuss below, this could be a good or bad thing. Much has been made of system designer Jony Ive’s overhaul of the iPhone interface. Apple users have praised his clean and simple product design aesthetic for years. With iOS 7, that design methodology is at work inside the operating system itself.

Love It or Hate It As is often the case with Apple’s innovations, users will either love or hate this major redesign. When former software VP Scott Forstall was ousted from Apple, the brand’s


i P hone L i f e September-October 2013

trademark skeuomorphic design—which Steve Jobs created to mimic real world objects—left with him. These finishing touches were cute, and perhaps helped people embrace smartphones by associating them with familiar, everyday items, but Apple decided to go in another direction with iOS 7. I’m all in favor of clean, simple design, but this complete revamping of iOS takes some getting used to, especially if you’ve been using the iPhone for a long time, as I have.

Updates to Consider Since iOS 7 is in beta mode, it’s still undergoing plenty of changes. Here are a couple issues I’d like to see fixed before its public release. While Microsoft Live Tiles lets app developers create custom icons that change based on external data, Apple only gives its own internal developers that capability. For example, the built-in Calendar app icon lets you see the current date with just a quick glance. Why not extend this functionality to other apps?

Another concern for me is the on-screen font; it’s narrow and hard to read on light backgrounds, including many of the built-in wallpapers. I hope that Apple will include additional wallpaper options that offer better contrast to the thin white font.

Snappy Design Elements

iOS 7 at a Glance s$ESIGN The new iOS design features flatter, cleaner graphics, with cool, swift animations. s #ONTROL #ENTER Get onetouch access to controls for Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, volume, brightness, and more. Open it by swiping from the bottom of any screen, including the Lock screen. s!IR$ROPShare documents easier and faster with iPhone or iPad users around you. s.OTIlCATION#ENTER A new tab called “Today” tells you what meetings, events, weather changes, etc., are coming up in the day. s-ULTITASKING The multitasking bar has been redesigned to take over the whole screen and give you a preview of open apps. To close an app, you simply flick upwards, sending it off the screen. sI4UNES2ADIO Apple has entered the streaming radio space with iTunes Radio. Create custom radio stations based on your favorite artists and listen for free. s&IND-YI0HONEYou can still use this to remotely wipe and deactivate your iPhone if it’s been stolen, but it also boasts a new security feature that requires you to enter your Apple ID and password to reactivate your phone, which may deter thieves from stealing it in the first place.

Better Folder Management I was relieved to see that folder management has greatly improved in iOS 7. It now offers support for multiple pages within folders, so you can store many more apps within a single folder. This is a big help for those of us who have hundreds of apps. I used to need duplicate folders, such as Shopping and Shopping 2, because I could only fit so many apps in one folder. Now I can be much more organized!


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One thing I like about iOS 7’s new look is that it includes animations and special effects that make the iPhone seem snappier and more responsive. Once you unlock your phone, your Home screen icons fly into place. Then, through a 3D concept called the Parallax Effect, the icons essentially float above the wallpaper, appearing to move ever so slightly as you tilt the device. And the Weather app displays animations representative of the actual weather outside.

Camera Enhancements Not only has the Camera app’s design been updated to present you with all your shooting formats—still, video, panorama, and square—right when you open the app, but its features have also been enhanced. Did you catch that I said “square”? That’s right, you can now take Instagram-ready square shots straight from the camera. Apple has also added a variety of photo filters. If you have an iPhone 5, you can even add a filter before you take the shot. In addition, you can finally zoom during video recording, and even take an HD snapshot while you record—a feature commonly found on competing devices.

Finally, a Control Center! A new, ultra-convenient Control Center is accessible by scrolling up from the bottom of any screen—even the Lock screen. Some of the most common settings, such as Airplane Mode, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, volume, brightness, and iPod controls, are displayed for quick access, as are the camera, world clock, calculator, and a built-in flashlight.

AirDrop & iWork

Searching and Multitasking Made Easy You no longer need to double-click to get to the search screen; now a simple downward swipe will bring up a search bar. Similarly, the multitasking bar now includes a full-screen view, showing you each background app’s current screen, rather than just its icon. Touch a screenshot to switch to that app, or flick up on one to quit it.

Addressing the Concerns

iOS 7 supports AirDrop, allowing for easy transfer of documents between iOS devices and Macs. Another indication of Apple’s desire to blur the line between mobile and desktop computers is the introduction of iWork for iCloud. This will let users work on Keynote, Pages, and Numbers documents from a modern browser, even on Windows 8 PCs!

The changes in iOS 7 are dramatic, so it’s only natural that some users will object to the redesign, while others will appreciate the modern touches. I’m concerned that the emphasis on bright white screens and new animations could impact battery life. I would also like to see some tweaking on the hard-to-read text below the app icons. A drop shadow, wider font, or bolder font might do the trick. And, I dare say, some new hardware to accompany this modern look would be quite welcome! I guess we’ll have to wait until this fall to see what else Apple has in store for us. Ѷ Todd Bernhard is the founder of No Tie, LLC, developer of bestselling apps Auto Verbal Pro Talking Soundboard and Ringtones#, a text-to-speech ringtone creator. Mr. Bernhard has written for a number of our publications and has owned a variety of mobile devices. Today, an iPhone is almost always attached to his hip. Check out all of Todd’s apps at

The Death of Skeuomorphism Apple Enters a New Era of Design with iOS 7 by David Averbach


n June 10, Apple announced the release of its new operating system, iOS 7, at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in San Francisco. This release marks the first version of iOS overseen by the legendary designer Sir Jony Ive, who replaced Scott Forstall as head of iOS earlier in the year. The result is the biggest change to iOS since the release of the original iPhone. One of the interesting decisions Ive made was to remove most of the OS’s skeuomorphic elements. While many of the changes seem subtle, this adjustment is a significant one in Apple’s design philosophy.


More than that, though, the shift away from skeuomorphism reflects a shift in the way we interact with our devices.

ject when made from another material or by other techniques.” In software, this technique is used to make digital items look like their real-world counterparts. For example, on the iPhone, the bookshelves in iBooks look to be made of pine, and the Notes app resembles a torn yellow legal pad. This technique is used to make the software more intuitive and easy to use.

Skeumorphism at Apple defines a skeuomorph as “an ornament or design on an object copied from a form of the ob-

i P h o n e L i f e S eptember-October 2013

One of Steve Jobs’s lasting legacies is his implementation of a graphical user interface (GUI) on the original Macintosh. The GUI allowed people to interact with a computer without knowing computer programming. In

order to make the operating system as intuitive as possible, Jobs used real office elements as symbols for how people interacted with their computers, such as using “folders” to store their digital “files,” and a “trash can” to throw them away. By implementing those familiar concepts, Jobs turned the intimidating world of 1’s and 0’s into an easy-to-understand environment. Jobs and Apple’s design team used this same technique when designing the iPhone’s original operating system. Previous smartphone interfaces were clunky and difficult to use, but thanks to its skeuomorphic design, the iPhone was inviting and easy to use for non-techies.

Why Removing it Makes Sense

An Outdated Metaphor

Moving Forward

Simplicity has always been at the core of Apple’s design style. It’s what makes using Apple products such an enjoyable experience. For Apple, any element that isn’t adding to the user experience is, by default, detracting from it. Sure, the green felt in the Game Center was fun, but it wasn’t necessary. By Apple’s philosophy, if something isn’t essential to the experience, it quickly becomes a distraction from whatever the user is trying to accomplish. Removing the skeuomorphism has created a simpler, clearer user experience.

In the nearly 30 years since the release of the original Macintosh, an entire generation has grown up using GUIs. Technology has become such a pervasive part of our lives that most of us no longer need skeuomorphic symbols to feel comfortable interacting with our gadgets. Kids growing up today interact with computers long before they interact with a physical filing cabinet. The folders metaphor could go right over their heads.

Steve Jobs was known for understanding what was best for users before they did. He famously excluded Flash from iOS because he felt it was an outdated technology. That decision seemed crazy at the time, but it forced the entire tech world to switch to HTML5, a more advanced technology. The transition took some time, but ultimately it made the industry change for the better. Apple’s iOS 7 demonstrates the same forward-thinking mentality that Jobs possessed and tried to instill in the company. The transition away from skeuomorphism is far from perfect and will take some getting used to, but ultimately, it’s a step in the right direction, and it will keep Apple—as well as the entire industry—moving forward to meet humanity’s evolving tech needs. Ѷ

Furthermore, computers and mobile devices are often capable of performing many tasks that their physical counterparts cannot. This makes skeuomorphism inherently limited. A good example of this is the addition of tags to OS X Mavericks, Apple’s latest version of Mac OS. In Mavericks, in addition to putting files in a folder, you can also tag them with various keywords. Rather than having to remember where you filed everything, assigning tags allows you to search for all files with a certain keyword. The tagging functionality has no physical counterpart, as there’s no way to search for tags on a physical folder.

The balance has now shifted to the point where people are starting to use the digital world as a metaphor for how they interact with the physical world. Forget Scrabble—the Words with Friends board game is just like the app! Sometimes I’ll read something in print, and for a split second I’ll look for the Facebook “Share” button. Perhaps the most extreme example is with toddlers, who are now growing up with iPhones and iPads. If you hold a print photograph in front of a toddler whose parents own an iPhone or iPad, they will inevitably attempt to pinch the picture to zoom in on it. The toddler is expecting their physical world to behave the same way as their gadgets.

David Averbach is the CEO and Publisher of iPhone Life magazine. David has an obsession with all things Apple. He grew up on Macs and now has a MacBook Pro, iPhone, iPad, and an Apple TV. David enjoys traveling and Ultimate Frisbee. He has been to over 20 countries. To contact David, email him at

iPhone Lif e S e pte m be r-O c tobe r 2 0 1 3


8 Little-Known

iOS Tips & Tricks by Alex Cequea

O 20

ne of the many joys of my job is uncovering hidden nuggets within my precious iPhone and iPad. Every time I think I know all my iPhone’s secrets, I discover a whole new world of useful tips. Here are 8 littleknown tricks to make your life just a tiny bit easier. But hey, they say it’s the little things, right?

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Insert an Email Attachment Most people don’t realize they can access additional options hidden within the Mail app. When composing an email, if you tap and hold the empty content area, a set of options will pop up. If you press with the arrow pointing right in the options bar, it will give you two additional options: to insert a photo or video, or to increase or decrease the email quote level. To insert a photo or video, simply tap on the option, and it will take you to the Photos app. Note that, in order to email document attachments like PDFs, you’ll need to email them from iBooks or any other program that can open that type of doc.


Save Online Photos For a long time, I felt silly for not knowing how to do this. If you’re browsing the web with Safari and want to save a photo from an article or webpage, simply tap and hold the photo and select Save Image; it’ll save directly to your Camera Roll.


Reverse Panorama Here’s a fun one. You probably know that you can take panoramic photos from left to right, but did you know you can also take them from right to left? We don’t exactly know when this could come in handy—perhaps while taking pics of a marathon where you see runners sprinting from right to left? Regardless, it’s a tiny little feature most would have missed. To activate it, open Camera>Options>Panorama and tap the arrow in the middle of the screen to reverse panorama.


Let it Speak When Siri talks back, it mostly says whatever it wants to say. Did you know you can make Siri say whatever you want it to say? This feature is under the Accessibility menu, and you can activate it by opening Settings>General>Accessibility >Speak Selection and turning it On. You can even set the speaking speed, along


with the type of English dialect, such as British, Australian, Irish, or South African.

a list of apps that include transit directions to the location you mentioned, and if you’ve already downloaded Google Maps, it’ll show up at the top of the pile.

5 Don’t Lose Direction Both Apple’s built-in Maps app and Google Maps have nifty features that let you pinch and zoom your way to a virtual air tour of any city in the world. Unfortunately, sometimes the spinning and flying can get disorienting, and before you know it, you don’t know which way is up. To quickly reset your North, simply tap the small compass on the upper-right corner of the screen, and it’ll reset the screen so that North reassuringly points up once again.

6 4WEET&ROM the Notification Center If you’re not yet using Twitter, this little feature might ease you into it. Once you’ve signed up for Twitter, open Settings>Twitter and tap Add Account. Adding your Twitter account will make it show up as an option in your Notification Center. To Tweet, open the Notification Center by swiping down from the top of the Home screen, and tap on the field that says, “Tap to Tweet.” If you’ve added more than one account, you can switch users by tapping the From field. If you’re a fan of the Notification Center, this feature could get you tweeting in no time!

Use Siri to Get Directions from Google Maps When you ask Siri for directions, it’ll automatically use Apple Maps as the default app for turn-by-turn directions. If you want to use Google Maps or some other navigation app instead, you can cleverly bypass Apple’s default by adding the phrase “via transit” to your query. For example, if you say “Siri, give me directions to New York City,” Siri will pull up Apple Maps and start guiding you. But if you say, “Give me directions to New York City via transit,” Siri will pull up


ios 7 is coming

This fall we’ll see the official unveiling of iOS 7, and its new design and features will make your iPhone or iPad seem like a brand new device. Most of the tips here should work the same way, but stay on the lookout for cool new features, such as Control Center, folders that hold unlimited apps, photo filters, and much more.

Create Events &ASTER The Calendar app is essential for keeping track of my day-to-day activities. I can schedule events with a few quick taps and see what’s coming up in the day, week, or month at a glance. Customizing events always felt cumbersome to me, though, until I learned a cool way to do it. Once you’re in the Calendar app, flip your iPhone or iPad to landscape mode to open the weekly view. To create an event, simply tap and hold anywhere on the screen until the prompt comes up to name the event. Then, tap and hold to modify the date and time, and drag the event to the day and time you want. Easy! Ѷ


Alex Cequea is the Editor in Chief of iPhone Life magazine. He holds an MBA in Sustainable Business, and he writes and speaks about mobile technology, authenticity and creating a more inter-connected world. He enjoys tennis, sustainability, public speaking, and climbing mango trees. You can contact him at

iPhone Lif e S e pte m be r-O c tobe r 2 0 1 3


Stephanie LaBorde Pierotti Age: 38 Location: Las Vegas, Nevada One-Line Bio: Communications Director at Exotics Racing, Adjunct Educator, and Serial Entrepreneur.

Maps: This syncs with the Bluetooth media system in my car and guides me to my destination with spoken directions. It’s 10 times more accurate that my car’s navigation system!

DIRECTV: I use this app to program my DVR on the go when someone recommends a “must-see” movie or new show.

Clock: I set my alarm every night so that I wake up to The Muppets’ “Mahna Mahna” every morning.

hiTask: This project and task-management app keeps me sane!

Epoxy: A notice from this app pops up on my phone when I’m close to a restaurant with a special offer. Mint is my one-stop money management tool.


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ModCloth: This is my favorite online apparel retailer—they post new items periodically throughout the day.

Pamela Slim’s Blog: I added this site to my Home screen for a daily dose of wisdom from an author that inspires me.

Nike + iPod: I plug my iPhone into the cardio machines at Lifetime Fitness to track my workouts with this app.

MileBug: This handy app calculates and records my business mileage on the fly with a GPS tracking tool.

Shazam: “Who sings this song?!” This app gives me the answers to the questions that would otherwise keep me up at night.

Audiobooks from Audible: This app allows me to listen to audio books during my long daily commute.

It’s Back-to-School Time!


ut away the swim trunks and suntan lotion—it’s time for serious learning! The start of every school year conjures up all sorts of associations: shopping for crisp new notebooks and folders, watching autumn leaves swirl onto the football field, getting surprised with a dreaded pop quiz in first period. Every fall, students of all ages, from kindergarten to Ph.D. level, embark on a journey of knowledge and discovery. And year after year, the sights and sounds are the same. Except now, students carry iPads instead of notebooks, write with styluses rather than pencils, and send text messages instead of passing notes.

Mobile technology constantly changes the way we learn and communicate, so it’s not surprising that our educational systems are frantically rushing to adapt. And with online-learning enrollment growing 14 times faster than average highereducation enrollment, it’s clear that new tools are not merely important; they’re necessary. This section is all about iEducation. From articles exploring the evolution of the textbook and free online academic resources to roundups of educational apps and tips on surviving dorm life, we’ve covered it all. We’ve also showcased the best gear for students, including classroom-ready iPad cases and rugged messenger bags and backpacks. The iPhone and iPad have become fundamental elements of education; read up to learn how to best take advantage of these mobile tools.

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Get an iEducation The Best Apps and Online Resources by Jim Karpen



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wenty years ago, before the web existed as we know it, if you wanted information you went to a library. Today, of course, you turn to the Internet, and it probably doesn’t even occur to you to visit a library.

Just as access to information has transitioned away from being associated with a specific place, so too is education transitioning away from school buildings. A whole world of schooling is now available to you via your iPad and iPhone, much of it for free. And much of it is taught by the country’s top university professors.

imagine a better approach to learning the periodic table. When you open the app, you see rotating representations of all the elements. Tap one, and you get a full-screen, rotatable version of that element. Other features include video clips of the elements’ properties and the ability to view the images in 3-D. This app has rightly received considerable attention, not only for its effectiveness, but also for being the epitome of an education app for iOS.

In this article I’ll point you to a great resource from Apple for finding specific education apps, as well as to those services that offer lectures and entire courses for free, including iTunes U, TED Talks, Khan Academy, and Coursera. iTunes U is oriented toward all levels, kindergarten through university. Coursera is oriented toward the college level, Khan toward junior high and high school, and TED for curious intellectuals at any level. This article also covers Udemy, which offers both free and paid courses. Coursera: Hundreds of Free College Courses ( Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCS) are the next big thing in higher education, as universities scramble to make the transition to offering their education on the web. They best news: they’re free. And typically they come from the top universities and professors in the country. The leading MOOCS are Coursera, Udacity (, and EdX (edx. org), with Coursera having the widest range of content. Apple’s Directory of Apps in Education ( Needless to say, there are at least tens of thousands of education apps. They can be used for everything from learning to read to learning the periodic table to learning needlepoint. To make it easier for you, Apple has selected their favorites and has created an online directory of these apps.

Each of the approximately 400 courses on Coursera is typically 10 weeks long and consists of short streaming video lectures, reading assignments, online discussions, an exam, and a certificate of completion. Many of the courses are adopting new web-based conventions that make them much more compelling and effective. The videos are often short and interspersed with interactive exercises.

On the main page listed above, you can view just the iPad apps or all the apps that work on both the iPad and iPhone. Each is divided into the broad categories of English Language Arts; Mathematics; Science; History and Geography; Language Development; Art, Music, and Creativity; Reference, Productivity, and Collaboration; and Accessibility, with the last category pointing to education apps for those with visual and auditory challenges.

They offer courses in 23 categories, including art, business, economics, film, law, life sciences, and statistics. Universities offering MOOCs include Harvard, Stanford, Princeton, MIT, and many more.

Each category has a number of subcategories. The Science category, for example, has subcategories for Astronomy, Earth Science, Chemistry, Life Science, and Physics.

And, fortunately, this excellent educational resource is available to you via the iPad and iPhone. The CoursePad app (free, lets you download the video lectures and watch them offline, take notes, consult the lecture slides, and more. You can also access the courses via the Coursera website, but an advantage of the app is having access to the materials offline.

Many of these apps can do things a textbook would never have been able to do. Take, for example, The Elements: A Visual Exploration ($13.99, It’s hard to

Udacity can also be accessed directly via your device. Their courses are also free, but they don’t offer as many categories or courses as Coursera. Their categories include

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business, computer science, mathematics, and physics. iTunes U: The World’s Largest Catalog of Classes (Free, Apple's iTunes U has a ton of educational content—full courses, videos, audio files, and e-books—all for free. Apple claims that it’s the "world’s largest online catalog of free educational content," and earlier this year they announced that iTunes U content downloads had topped 1 billion. According to Apple, as of early this year more than 1,200 universities and colleges, including Duke, Yale, Cambridge, and Oxford, and over 1,200 K-12 schools and districts were hosting iTunes U courses, some public and others private. iTunes U offers educational materials in 16 categories, from Art & Architecture to Teaching & Learning. You can download or subscribe to content via iTunes on your desktop computer or via the iTunes U app on your device. The app lets you search by keyword for course materials that interest you, or view courses by category. Any courses you select are added to your library in a manner similar to iBooks. If the resource you select is part of a collection of lectures on a topic, then the icon in your library shows the course image and title. If it's a full-fledged course, then the icon shows a spiral binder. If it's an individual video, then that appears in your library. When you play a downloaded audio or video, it plays within the iTunes U app. Books open within iBooks. A resource is termed a course when it has all facets of an actual course that you take: course overview and outline, lectures, lessons, assignments, etc. A “collection” is simply a group of audio files or videos by an individual on a specific topic. When you download a course, you download a document, which appears as a spiral-bound book that outlines all of the facets of the course: the lessons, the materials, the posts from the teacher, etc. But then as you take the course, you download each resource separately as needed, such as a video lecture. Unlike other resources, such as Coursera or TED Talks, the quality of production on iTunes U varies. For example, I have a lecture covering an Introduction to Prehistory that's simply a scratchy recording of a classroom lecture, while the


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highly polished Open University course on Charles Darwin includes a syllabus, video, audio, and two e-books. Khan Academy: Over 4,000 Instructional Videos (Free, The hugely popular Khan Academy offers over 4,000 educational 10-minute videos on mathematics, medicine, finance, physics, astronomy, art history, and more. These short lessons are targeted toward grade school and high school students. Many also have accompanying exercises. This site began as a result of the viral success of short videos made by hedge-fund analyst Salman Khan that he posted on YouTube beginning in 2004 to help tutor his young relatives on math and science topics. Khan Academy now has a staff and many hands contributing to the videos. There are a number of apps for accessing the lessons from Khan Academy. The official Khan Academy app gives you access to all the thousands of videos. The iPad version also lets you download individual videos or entire playlists for watching offline. Plus, it includes subtitles so you can jump around in the video, viewing those segments of most interest. And it lets you track your progress by letting you log into your account to see what videos you’ve watched. In addition, the unofficial Khan Archiver app (free, app2. me/6017) lets you download and archive Khan videos for offline viewing. Also available are nearly 50 free apps for the iPhone that give you access to videos on specific topics such as algebra and chemistry. Udemy: On-Demand Courses, Both &REEAND0AID (Free, Everything else discussed here is free, but Udemy is different. The official Udemy app is free, but the catalog of over 6,000 courses includes both free and paid courses. Examples of paid courses (available through in-app purchase) include a course on marketing for startups for $48.99, a beginner’s course on creating iPhone and iPad apps for $28.99, and a photography course for $38.99. Udemy claims to be the world’s largest destination for ondemand online courses. The app lets you download courses

for offline viewing or watch the videos via streaming. Plus, it remembers your location if you need to stop a video and resume later. This bounty would have been unimaginable in the past. Clearly the Internet is transforming access to information and education, and the world will never be the same.

TED: Talks by the World’s Leading Thinkers (Free, TED is especially for those who get excited by profound ideas. That would be me. I love TED Talks. They are famous for their production quality and insight, while keeping to a manageable18 minutes or less. Among the presenters are

many Nobel Laureates. TED is an acronym for Technology, Entertainment, Design, but the talks range the entire spectrum of disciplines. I’ve particularly enjoyed talks by primatologist Jane Goodall and physicist Brian Greene. According to the description, the official TED app presents talks from “education radicals, tech geniuses, medical mavericks, business gurus, and music legends.” An index of the entire library is built into the app, so that you can browse it offline. You can stream the videos or download them for later viewing. Over 1,400 videos are available, with more being added nearly every day from TED events held around the world. You can browse by topic or theme, as well as sort by popularity or recently added. Ѷ Jim Karpen, Ph.D, is on faculty at Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield, IA. He has been writing about the revolutionary consequences of computer technology since 1994. His Ph.D dissertation anticipated the Internet revolution. His site,, contains selected regular columns written for The Iowa Source.

Educational Apps 22 Standout Apps for Students of All Ages By Nina Benjamin


ith an increasing number of schools incorporating iPads into their classrooms, and numerous parents providing their kids with iDevices to study with at home, it’s no wonder that education apps rank as the second most popular category in the App Store. From learning the alphabet to memorizing times tables, from studying human anatomy to exploring ancient Egypt, you can delve into any subject imaginable with the help of educational apps. Today, we’ll look at just a few standout apps in each of four common categories—Math, Science, Social Studies, and Language Arts—plus two all-around winners every student should have in his or her app arsenal. For a full range of selections in over 25 subjects, check out the App Store’s Education Collections.

MATH Slate Math (iPad only: Free, With charming graphics and a wide range of activities for children entering kindergarten or first grade, Slate Math puts a fun spin on learning basic math skills. Elevated Math (iPad only: Free, with in-app purchases, While this app’s pay-per-lesson model can add up quickly, its wonderful animations, videos, and indepth explanations of math concepts for grades 4-8 make it a worthy selection.


Mathemagics ($1.99, Master mental math with the help of this engaging app, which features dozens of tricks to figuring out calculations without a pen and paper. Perfect for those studying for the SAT, ACT, or GRE.

SCIENCE The Magic of Reality (iPad only: $13.99, This award-winning digital book, which features hundreds of brilliant illustrations and animations, takes readers on an illuminating journey through our scientific surroundings. Your kids will love it, and so will you! The Magic School Bus: Oceans (iPad only: $7.99, Kids learning about plant and animal life will love this interactive e-book, packed with facts, photos, and videos about the ocean. The Elements: A Visual Exploration (iPad only: $3.99, The periodic table has never looked so intriguing. Explore the elements in depth with this wonderful chemistry app—it’s worth its price tag and more.

Math Ref ($1.99, This award winner provides students from middle school to college level with nearly 1,500 formulas, examples, and tools. A great reference for any math class!

Solar Walk – 3D Solar System Model ($2.99, Toss out your old Styrofoam solar-system model and pick up your iPad instead—this app takes you on a galactic adventure with its crisp graphics and wealth of information.

Graphing Calculator ($1.99, app2. me/2442) Don’t want to shell out over $100 for a TI-84? Download this indispensable app and you’ll be able to graph multiple equations right on your iDevice for under $2.

Cell and Cell Structure (iPad only: $2.99, This beautifully designed app takes students inside the cellular system, teaching them about cell structure and function one stunning graphic at a time.

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SOCIAL STUDIES National Geographic World Atlas ($1.99, View the globe in myriad ways with this gorgeous app, featuring several map modes and information on every country and capital city in the world. U.S. Geography by Discovery Education (iPad only: $0.99, This toprated app is a treasure trove of info on the U.S. states and regions. Students and adults alike will enjoy brushing up on their geography with news stories, videos, games, and quizzes. Back in Time (iPad only: $7.99, app2. me/6044) Travel to the beginning of time with this comprehensive, visually rich app, which highlights the most important eras and events in history on an interactive timeline. Timeline World War 2 (iPad only: $13.99, Students learning about World War II would be remiss to ignore this museum-like app, replete with images, newsreel videos, a zoomable timeline, and much more. Presidents vs. Aliens ($0.99, app2. me/6046) This playful app for kids turns learning about the U.S. presidents into a game. Knock down aliens as you correctly answer trivia questions on presidential facts, quotes, nicknames, and events.

LANGUAGE ARTS Rocket Speller (Free, Little ones from ages 3-7 will love learning letter recognition and spelling basics as they use their new skills to build a custom rocket ship.

Word Mover (iPad only: Free, Let students’ creativity shine with this app that simulates magnetic poetry. Loads of options, including a built-in word bank, texts of famous speeches, and backgrounds, make creating poetry in this app a blast.

Literary Analysis Guide ($1.99, app2. me/5087) This must-have English reference app gives high school and college students an in-depth explanation of literary devices used in poetry, prose, and rhetoric. The Brainstormer ($1.99, Spark your writing students’ imagination with this clever tool, a spinnable triple wheel of plots, subjects, and settings that offers a starting point from which to write a story. All bets are off! Pages ($9.99, Create reports, posters, and more with this gorgeous word-processing app from Apple that syncs with iCloud and lets you work on documents anywhere you go.

TOP ALL-AROUND PICKS "RAIN0/0 &EATURED -OVIE (Free, with in-app purchases, Featuring daily animated videos that are relevant to current events yet full of historical facts, this well-designed app makes learning fun for all ages. Each video is accompanied by an interactive quiz, so you can review the movie’s basic concepts while sharpening your critical thinking skills. BrainPOP’s videos cover several subjects, including Science, Engineering, Music, and Health. Paid subscription options are available for full access to BrainPOP’s 750+ movies and quizzes. Wolfram Alpha ($2.99, app2. me/2445) We’re pretty sure this encyclopedic app is run by wizards. But seriously, it’s THE app to rely on for info and formulas of all kinds, as it draws upon Wolfram|Alpha’s vast collection of algorithms and data from thousands of domains in order to get you the facts you need on any topic, from astrophysics to mythology. Ѷ

Nina Benjamin is the Associate Editor of iPhone Life magazine. She holds a B.A. in Literature and Writing and has written and edited articles for several regional magazines, newspapers, and blogs. Once a professional ballet dancer, Nina now enjoys teaching ballet and singing.

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Get Organized Handy Apps to Help You Track Your Assignments By Mike Wewerka

neither party will ever see the other’s phone number. This app works well not only for typical academic classes like English, math, and chemistry, but for sports as well. If a coach wants to keep in touch with his or her team, this app allows it while maintaining privacy. Users can even link parents into the messages, too, to keep them abreast of their children’s schedule and assignments. With a 4.5-star rating in the App Store and more than 200,000 users sending millions of messages a month, this free (and ad-free!) app does wonders for the student/ teacher relationship—and maybe even your grades.


t happens every year like clockwork—the weather gets a little cooler, the leaves start to turn orange and yellow, and you can feel the end of summer rapidly approaching. We all know what that means: it’s time to start preparing for school again!

As your workload multiplies, as it inevitably will, don’t resort to keeping track of assignments in your head or on scribbled pieces of paper. Why not take advantage of your iDevice, something you always have with you, when planning your upcoming school year? Your iPhone and iPad are indispensable tools for educational needs, and there are a myriad of great apps out there to help you keep track of your class schedule, homework, after-school commitments, and more. Here are just a few selections from the App Store to help you organize your time and stay on top of the many responsibilities student life entails. Remind 101 (Free, This boundary-breaking app lets teachers and students reach a whole new level of communication. It’s along the lines of iMessage, but intended for academia. Here’s how Reminders 101 works: a teacher suggests that students download the app in order to receive classwide messages with reminders, updates, and notices—and


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Remind 101 lets students and teachers communicate about assignments without either party seeing the other’s phone number. Infinite Campus Mobile Portal (Free, When it comes to keeping track of your (or your child’s) schedule, grades, attendance, and more, this app is as good as it gets. If your school or university supports Infinite Campus, simply get your District ID and follow the setup directions. With this app, you’ll be able to see test scores, get notified when your grades are released, check your

attendance record, and even see how much lunch money you have left. If you still feel disorganized, you can use the built-in daily planner to make sure you don’t miss any assignments. You can view your assignments by class, make notes, and leave reminders for future dates, so you don’t forget any important projects down the line. However, if you do, it’s okay—Infinite Campus Mobile Portal can alert you with notifications, keeping you on track and on schedule.

Use iStudiez Pro to track assignments and organize your schedule in an easy-to-use, polished interface. Another slight drawback of iStudiez Lite is its lack of real-time push notifications and backup support, but hey, it is free, and at least it’ll give you enough information and hands-on experience to decide whether upgrading to the pro version is worth it. Ѷ

Infinite Campus Mobile Portal is a one-stop shop for keeping organized and on top of assignments.

Mike Wewerka is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the award-winning online tech site Wewerka has been involved with technology for over 15 years, but his main area of expertise is mobile gadgetry, including Apple, Android, Windows Phone, and everything in between. Follow Mike on Twitter @MikeWewerka.

iStudiez Pro ($2.99, Perhaps the most efficient app for students is iStudiez Pro, which is the only app mentioned here that actually costs money—but it sure provides plenty of bang for your buck. This refined, beautifully designed app allows users to check their GPA and grades, organize their schedules, track and review assignments, and more. It also features support for push notifications and alerts. But where iStudiez really pulls ahead of the pack is with its iCal and iCloud sync support. Your assignments, notes, and schedules will sync wirelessly with iCloud, so you can see your information on your iPad or Mac through the available Mac version of the app. iStudiez Pro feels like an “Apple app” in that it’s extremely polished, easy to use, and syncs with all your devices. It may be the most expensive app on the list, but it’s also the best. I know spending money on an app, even just under $3, can be unappealing, so if you're unsure about purchasing the full version, I highly suggest you at least try iStudiez Lite (free, Because it is a “lite” version, it limits the number of classes and assignments you can manage.

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Surviving Dorm Life Wallet-Friendly Finds to Get You Through College by Rebecca Santiago


s a person who just completed 18-odd years in the education system, if there’s one thing I know too much about, it’s school. Pencils and books and teachers’ dirty looks—oh, I’ve seen them all, and frankly, I’m pretty glad to have tossed my cap last May. Setting my weariness of academia aside, though, I will concede that the first few weeks of classes are actually pretty fun, especially in college, and that’s what we’re talking about today. I’ve rounded up six back-to-school necessities, including apps and gear, for your purchasing pleasure. Oh, and you ramen-noshing dorm-livers will be happy to know that, were you to buy everything on this list, it would cost you less than $60. I know, right?

DON'T SCREW UP Those of you who feel like you just didn’t get hazed enough during your high school years or your frat-pledging days are in luck. Because it’s 2013, you don’t even need some drunken fool in a backwards baseball cap to shame you into contriteness. No, sir, you’ve got BetterMe (free, for that—but instead of teaching you how to chug a Keystone Light, it’s going to teach you how to wake up in the morning, and you’re going to thank it later.

Every time you smack snooze, the app will post to your Facebook to inform your friends that you’re a total snoozing

wuss. You can also use it to set goals and plans. So next time you feel the urge to bail on your health services appointment or procrastinate your lab report until five minutes before class, just remember that the eyes of the internet are trained on you, ever watching, ever judging.

RISE AND SHINE But back to that alarm clock thing—you will oversleep in college. You will oversleep when you have a real job, too, but you can usually downplay your lateness with a box of donuts for the office. Nobody hates the guy who brings in donuts. But because being a college student severely limits your donut-buying funds, you should probably make an effort to slide in by second bell. So, whether you’re up late studying for a poli-sci exam, taking shots of well tequila, or both, you’re gonna want to download Rise Alarm Clock ($1.99, before your head hits the pillow.

What I love about this cleanly designed app is how customizable it is. I would rather sleep till 4 p.m. and miss a midterm than wake up and solve math problems until the alarm stops, which is a real thing some apps do. Instead, I opt for progressive alarms that grow louder over time, which is the less bootleg version of my usual set-five-alarms-and-hopeone-works routine. Will this alarm make your roommate hate

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you? Maybe, but you can consider it revenge for that stupid shag rug she rolled out on move-in day.

LISTEN UP You will absolutely need headphones in college. They are the only way to tune out your roommate on Pandora, watch illegally streamed TV shows at 3 a.m., and incessantly video-chat with your high school sweetheart (whom you will absolutely dump during sophomore year, if not sooner). This was bad news for me, as I have the worst freaking luck with headphones. First, I’m convinced that my ears are either abnormally shaped or abnormally small, so the vast majority of earbuds fit wonkily. Worse, I get headaches if anything so much as grazes the pressure points behind said deformed ears, so I can’t slink around in a pair of music-snob, oversized hipster headphones as all too many of my peers are wont to do. Additionally, I’ve broken pretty much every pair of headphones I’ve ever owned in, like, four weeks flat.

KEEP IN TOUCH It is no small exaggeration to say that college students spend half of their waking hours glued to their phones, sharing videos of sea otters and planning dates that involve Cool Ranch Dorito Tacos, or whatever else kids today discuss in their spare time. (As a college grad, I am far too mature for conversations of this nature.) And that’s why everybody needs to download MessageMe (free, app2. me/6027). MessageMe, a free app that is essentially iMessage on steroids, allows you to group chat and, with notable ease, doodle on and share videos, music, and photos. It’s an easy way to stay in touch with friends from home or friends who are all the way at the other end of the hall or on the next floor up at the library. (Have I mentioned that college makes you insanely lazy?)

HIT THE BOOKS As an English major, I all but avoided taking exams during my college career. Sure, I had to write tons of papers, but my patience for mental gymnastics peaked back in AP Bio. But, because my liberal-arts college believed in well-roundedness, I did have to take a few test-oriented, memorization-heavy classes. For that, I turned to flashcards, which are a true-blue study method that I plan to start my eventual children on as soon as possible. (Flashcard: MOMMY every time I peer into the crib.) And perhaps that is where STUDYBLUE (free,, a free study-aid app, gets its name.

Enter my JVC Marshmallow In-Ear Headphones ($14.95, I found these suckers during the first grocery shop of my semester abroad in London, and I’ve never loved a pair of headphones so much. They are supremely unfancy, come in several bright colors, and also include a few sizes of foam earpieces, which is ideal for picky ear-types like me. And in a year and a half, these bad boys have survived five countries, four internship commutes, one semester-long stint of 40-hour weeks at the school paper, and one long-distance relationship. That is to say, they’ll comfortably cover your video-chatting and Pandora-listening needs—even if you, like me, are the Thor of headphone users.


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The app allows you to make high-tech flashcards—audio! visuals!—and includes other perks, like reminders and a search function (no more fumbling around at the bottom of your backpack, where the pencil lead and unwrapped gum reside, for that one notecard about t-tests). Everything just seems less unbearable on an iPhone, and that includes learning about the expansion of the universe and the inevitable demise of life as we know it for Astronomy 101.

IDENTIFY YOURSELF You can’t go anywhere in college without your school ID. Dining hall? Nope. School-sanctioned event? Nope. Movie theater? Well, you can, but then you don’t get the sweet student discount. Constant proof of your identity is a must. It’s very 1984. Fortunately, we have cute stuff to get us through the Big Brother-y era in which we live. Take, for example, Incipio’s Stashback Credit Card Case ($39.99, for the iPhone 5. (The

company also makes a similar, and slightly cheaper, case called the Stowaway for the iPhone 4, 4S, and iPhone 5.) You can use it to stash up to three credit or ID cards in a fancy hidden compartment, which you can access by flipping open a panel at the bottom of the phone. The design also allows for easy charging. It comes in a few different colors; I’m partial to the white/turquoise number, but you can go more professional with cases in shades of blue, black, and gray. Ѷ Rebecca Santiago is a writer and editor based in New York. She has written for Glamour, Marie Claire, Boston Magazine, and Follow her on Twitter @rebsanti.

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Playing it Smart Educational Games that Stimulate the Mind By Brittany Vincent


ablets, smartphones, and mobile devices have made it easier than ever to get an education on the go. But as learning tools have evolved, so has entertainment. Learning math, difďŹ cult grammar rules, and a wealth of other topics doesn't have to be serious all the time. We've gathered some of the most exciting examples of educational gaming apps available. You can either use these in tandem with more humdrum teaching tools, or on their own for supplemental learning. And who knows, you might even start playing them for fun!

The Oregon Trail ($0.99, A childhood staple for many of us, The Oregon Trail is more than just a dysentery generator (though it can tend to feel like that if you keep ďŹ nding yourself face to face with your tombstone). Luckily, it's still an entertaining and wholly educational adventure if you pay attention. The game offers historical and geographical lessons, it illustrates what it took for early pioneers to survive such austere living conditions, and it even has some trivia thrown in for good measure. It may not be the classic retro-aesthetic edition, but it's a darn good choice for adults and children alike.

Mathmateer ($0.99, Math is a tricky subject, and getting yourself to study and master it can take a bit of prodding. That's where games like Mathmateer come into play. Across 56 different space missions that involve building rockets and launching them into space, younger players will learn basics such as math functions, units of time and money, and much more. It's a colorful, customizable adventure that quickly feels less like education and more like a guilty pleasure, and the whole family can get in on the fun.

Dr. Frankenstein's Body Lab ($2.99, What's more fun than squishing parts of a monster's body in order to animate him? Actually learning about the body itself, apparently. Seriously—with this spooky and

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satisfying little app, not only will you sharpen your puzzlesolving skills and coordination, but you'll also learn the basics of anatomy and how components of the body actually fit together. It's morbid fun through and through, especially when silly things like broccoli and goldfish are thrown in the mix.

Math Mathews ($1.99, An entertaining, cartoon-y adventure that doesn't talk down to players of any age is a boon to any educational game library. It's great for kids and adults alike, considering it's a throwback to the days of Math Blaster and the other narrative-driven edutainment of the late ’90s and early 2000s. Three different modes of math practice and progress-monitoring tools are just the icing on the cake.

Monster Physics ($0.99, Monster Physics boasts a multitude of spare parts with which you can build crazy vehicles and machines. It's a veritable physics playground built for learning. In fact, there's a whole section meant for that purpose alone, but you'll undoubtedly want to spend your time completing missions instead. Magnets, rubber, ropes, joints, and chains are just some of the tools available to you, and there's no end to the contraptions you can dream up.


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Stack the States ($0.99, This geography game tosses out questions about where specific U.S. states are located, and asks players to drag them to the correct spot on the map. In another game mode, players stack states above a specific line to reach a prize. It's an addictive quiz game that even older players will find themselves getting into. If you master the United States, you can move on to the app's cousin, Stack the Countries, for a bigger challenge.

Math Ninja HD ($1.99, Combining engaging gameplay with education is the hallmark of an excellent tool for teaching children, and Math Ninja HD does just this. An evil tomato and his robotic army are invading your tree house, and you, the math-powered ninja, need to keep them out. Answer math equations and employ cool weapons like smoke bombs, magic, or ninja stars to fend off the advancing hordes. Math problems are customizable and feature varying levels of difficulty to cater to younger and older players.

Spell Pop ($1.99, Spell Pop is aimed at a younger crowd, but if you need to bone up on your spelling, it could help you out as well. Personalized spelling lists and the ability to record words for playback make this adorable game a must-have. Swipe to spell, and start memorizing those tricky words! DragonBox + Algebra ($5.99, There's nothing sneakier than a game that covertly drives home a skill. That's exactly what DragonBox does. It teaches basic

algebra in the most inconspicuous of ways by disguising itself as an addictive puzzler. By the time you've cleared most of the missions, you won't even realize you've essentially just completed a quick algebra cram session. Ѷ Brittany has been covering various types of media as a freelance entertainment writer for five years. Until her dying breath she’ll be wielding a BFG made entirely of killer drive and ambition. Follow her on Twitter @MolotovCupcake, or find her work archived at

Head of the Class Top iPad Cases Designed for Students by Nina Benjamin

cases to some of the largest school districts in the country, such as the San Diego Unified School District, which purchased 25,000 Ekto+ cases for their fifth and seventh graders in 2012. Uzibull also customizes cases with specific school district logos and colors.


n February 2013, Apple reported that they had sold 8 million iPads to educational institutions around the world, with 4.5 million of those to schools in the United States. As more and more schools incorporate iPads into their curricula, a greater need for protective cases arises for students. SquareTrade lists “dropping while handling” as the number-one cause of a broken iPad. Whether the culprit is a slippery-fingered kindergartener or a too-busy-to-think college student, every iPad user in academia could use a little help in the iPad protection department. Here’s a roundup of great cases for every grade level.

Uzibull Ekto+ case ($29.95, The rugged yet lightweight Ekto+ is Uzibull’s top-selling iPad case. In fact, the company currently provides Ekto+


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Made of dense silicone with protective inner air cells and outer contouring that makes it easy to grip, the Ekto+ case is comfy for K-12 students to hold, yet tough enough to withstand a 4-foot drop onto concrete. Other design features include forward-facing speakers for amplified sound, covered buttons for better response, and a slim silhouette that allows it to easily fit into most iPad storage carts. GoNow Case ($59 for iPad, $49 for iPad mini; The ergonomically designed GoNow Case from the Attainment Company features a built-in handle that makes carrying an iPad or iPad mini easy for younger hands. C r a ft e d f r o m high-impact plastic

with a padded foam interior, this sleek yet protective case keeps your device safe from bumps and drops while offering accessibility to all ports and buttons. Like the Ekto+ case, the GoNow case redirects your iPad’s speakers to the front, enriching the volume and sound quality.

MonkeyTek Student MonkeyCase ($22.95, The Student MonkeyCase for iPad, made of leather with nubuck flannel lining, includes a large folio compartment for papers and an ergonomically placed pen or stylus holder, making it a great choice for high school or college students who want a more sophisticated-looking case with extra functionality. Besides offering total access to the iPad’s ports, buttons, and camera, the MonkeyCase boasts multiple standing positions— folio, landscape, and typing—lending versatility to school projects and after-school activities alike.

Booq Booqpad ($49.95-$99.95 for iPad, $39.95 for iPad mini; A clean, classy design and built-in notepad make the Booqpad folio case a perfect option for high school and college students. Available for both the full-size iPad and the mini, this practical yet stylish case comes in a variety of materials— genuine nappa leather, leatherette, recycled PET, or natural fiber—and offers slots for cards, tickets, or cash, as well as a center loop for a pen or stylus. Jot down notes, record assignments, or doodle to your heart’s content on the notepad; several types of refills are available from $4.95-$9.95 on the Booq website. And did we mention that this ingenious case is designed for both left- and right-handed users?

$APP&LIGHT0ADI0AD#ASE ($57, For college and university students looking to let their personalities shine through while keeping their iPads safe and sound,

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the FlightPad case from Dapp is a wonderful choice. Inspired by vintage fashion and classic book-binding techniques, the FlightPad is available in six unique designs, crafted from quality materials such as Italian book cloth and Portofino Leather, a high-end polyurethane material that’s as strong as it is soft (not to mention resistant to oil, water, and scuffs). Each FlightPad is meticulously handmade and features a beautiful interior pattern, a magnetized cover, and slip-free elastic loops that keep the iPad secure at the corners.

Since you can put the case on either side, righties and lefties alike will be able to use it effortlessly, taking down notes opposite the iPad for optimal use of class time. Weighing in at a mere 3.7 ounces and measuring only ½” thick, this slim case doesn’t bulk up your binder, and it offers full access to your iPad’s ports, buttons, and camera. The Binder Insert Case also features a pen/stylus loop and reinforced steel grommets for an extra-secure hold.

Bretford PowerSync Cart for iPad ($2,599.95, A classroom full of iPads isn’t complete without a safe place to store and charge them each night after the kids have shuffled out and the pencil shavings have been swept up. The PowerSync Cart from Bretford allows you to securely store, charge, sync, and transport up to 30 iPads. Each of the 30 slots inside the cart is roomy enough for an iPad with or without a case (see the Case Fit Guide on the website for compatible case models). Each slot is numbered for easy organization and features an included 30-pin or Lightning to USB cable for charging and syncing. An LED light on top of the cart indicates the charge status of each group of 10 iPads, turning green when the group’s batteries are fully loaded. The PowerSync Cart features durable casters and a frame that makes it easy to fit through doorways, so transporting your tablet stash from classroom to classroom isn’t a royal hassle. It also has a slightly recessed door latch so that the lock doesn’t catch on doorways. For any school incorporating iPads into the curriculum, a multifunctional cart like this isn’t a luxury—it’s a necessity.

Griffin Binder Insert Case ($24.99, Conveniently store your iPad in any standard 3-ring binder with the handy Binder Insert Case from Griffin Technology.


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ZooGue BinderPad Pouch ($19.99 for Grey, $24.99 for Black; Similar to Griffin’s binder case, the BinderPad Pouch from ZooGue offers a convenient way for students to store their iPad directly in their 3-ring binder for easy note-taking and carrying. While this case is even lighter than the previous case, at only 3.5 ounces, and boasts the same minimal thickness, it’s only for right-side use, since the port cutouts at the top and bottom are not universal. It does come in two colors, however, and is made of durable polyester with reinforced grommets. Ѷ Nina Benjamin is the Associate Editor of iPhone Life magazine. She holds a B.A. in Literature and Writing and has written and edited articles for several regional magazines, newspapers, and blogs. Once a professional ballet dancer, Nina now enjoys teaching ballet and singing.

Cool Carryalls Tech-Ready Messenger Bags & Backpacks by Siva Om


s students all over the country make their way back to the halls of academia, one of their most important considerations is what kind of school bag to get. With the daily trek to and from school, the library, or the campus café, often with heavy loads of textbooks, binders, and tech gear, having a dependable, high-quality bag that also looks good is a top priority.

tary, middle, or high school student. It comes in a variety of fun colors and playful patterns, perfect for the young student who wants to show a little self-expression. And with 2000 cubic inches of internal storage space and plenty of organizational features—including a padded tablet sleeve and a padded, fleece-lined laptop compartment—the Rebel 15 is the perfect bag for your school books, iDevices, and more.

To help you find the perfect carryall, I’ve rounded up some of the best backpacks and messenger bags on the market. I've included something for everyone—from elementary schoolers to college students—in a variety of styles and price points. And with special compartments to protect your iPad or laptop and its peripherals, each of these bags is designed with tech-savvy students in mind.


Incipio Expat Nylon Backpack ($89.99, The Incipio Expat is a durable pack constructed of resilient ballistic nylon, with ergonomically designed back padding and shoulder straps for comfort on the go. It offers plenty of storage compartments, several of which are lined with soft faux fur to cushion your belongings. Its TSA-friendly laptop sleeve makes spring-break travel a breeze, and its sleek design and stylish colors are perfect for the student looking to make a bold statement.

OGIO Rebel 15 Laptop Backpack ($60, The OGIO Rebel 15, one of the most affordable quality school bags you can find, is a great backpack for the elemen-


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HEX Academy Sonic Backpack ($99.95, The Academy Sonic backpack from HEX takes a simple design approach and amps it up with superior tech storage features. Boasting large, easily accessible compartments, including padded and fleece-lined pockets for an iPad and a

17” MacBook Pro, this streamlined bag packs quite an organizational punch. Sporting a minimalistic, modern look that is sure to appeal to any tech-oriented student, the Academy Sonic is crafted from premium, water-resistant, waxed reverse denim, making it an excellent choice to handle the inevitable wear and tear of another busy school year.

ECBC Lance Daypack ($149.99, Don't let this understated bag’s low-key appearance fool you. Dan Curtiss, the creative genius behind ECBC’s bag collection, has designed for REI and Samsonite, and his expertise at crafting elegant, functional, well-built bags is evident in the Lance Daypack. Made of water-resistant ballistic nylon with a breathable, padded back and ergonomically designed shoulder straps, the Lance is rugged yet comfy enough for all-day wear. It features plenty of internal storage space for your iDevices, laptop, and much more, making it an ideal pack for busy students—and one that’s well worth its price tag.


House of Marley Lively Up Scout Pack ($129.99, House of Marley makes great gear in the most earthfriendly fashion. Their supple yet sturdy Lively Up Scout Pack is crafted from the company’s patented Rewind fabric, a blend of hemp, cotton, and recycled plastic bottles. With a large internal storage area, a padded laptop sleeve and iPad pocket, and three easily accessible external pockets, this stylish, environmentally conscious bag can handle busy school days or quick trips out of town with no problem, mon.

Targus 16” Military Messenger ($49.99-$52.99, targus. com) The Targus Military Messenger is one of my favorite bags featured here. Not only is it ultra affordable, but it’s also exceptionally well made and features an abundance of clever pockets and storage compartments. This durable, over-theshoulder messenger features a padded laptop compartment, another large interior compartment, and lots of little nooks and crannies for all your gadgets, books, and ac-

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cessories. It’s perfect for high school and college students who want to secure their gear with rugged style.

Chrome Citizen Messenger Bag ($140-$160, chromeindustries. com) The Citizen is a top-quality messenger made by Chrome, a company that prides itself on excellent design and rugged construction. Featuring a weatherproof exterior and a quick-release seatbelt buckle strap, the Citizen is full of handy pockets and loops for carabiners, bike lights, and other accessories. Its huge internal storage compartment allows you to carry textbooks, a laptop, and more, and its shoulder and chest straps help you distribute the load in the most efficient and ergonomic way. Spend a little extra on the Citizen Messenger; it’s guaranteed to last a lifetime.

Booq Boa nerve ($149.99, booqbags. com) Booq’s Boa nerve messenger is a sleek and stylish bag that boasts tons of storage space, including a removable 15-17-inch laptop sleeve. This tough messenger will keep your important school materials safe and organized, and includes the added perks of a trolley pass-through on the back side and sturdy shoulder straps for comfortable carrying. While this is a pricier bag, its high-quality construction makes it a wise investment that will last for many years. Ѷ My passion for the arts has pushed me to excel at many creative endeavors, including web design, award-winning tattooing (sacredfiretattoos. com), and journalism. Between writing for iPhone Life, creating websites (, gardening, illustrating, and enjoying the wonders of nature with family, I manage to keep myself quite busy. You can reach me at

Digital Textbooks Exploring the Shift Towards Mobile Learning by Jim Karpen


raditional paper textbooks have been a stalwart of education, but today they’re rapidly disappearing, thanks in part to mobile devices such as the iPad. It’s possible that within five years, many schools will have gone completely digital. Last year, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan urged educators to make the transition to digital textbooks and materials as soon as possible. Florida has already passed a law requiring that schools spend at least half their budget for instructional materials on digital textbooks and other content by the 2015-16 school year. Other states are considering similar legislation.


Luen Chou, chief product officer at Pearson, says the transformation we’re seeing today is the culmination of 20 years of progress. Many of the company’s new products are being “born digital” and “born mobile,” meaning that they’re being developed from the ground up for mobile devices, rather than being adapted from paper textbooks.

Since much of that digital content requires an Internet connection, President Obama in June of this year announced a new initiative called ConnectEd, which aims to provide high-speed Internet connections to 99 percent of America’s students within the next five years.

Chou says that as CD-ROM technology became available in the 1990s, much of the digital learning content shifted from specific platforms to this more generic medium, which he characterizes as “edutainment.” All the content resided on the disk, and there was no network connection.

How are publishers responding? Pearson, one of the top three textbook publishers in the U.S., is rapidly moving toward focusing completely on digital textbooks. In 2012, approximately 50 percent of the company’s global revenues were from digital products and services.

Along with the Internet came another shift, with much of the content intended to be viewed in a web browser, either self-contained on a disk or via an Internet connection. Mobile devices have accelerated the trend toward digital. Chou says that, whereas in the early days there were many students per computer, these days there’s a huge push

The trend toward digital began, he says, in the early days of desktop computers, when educational software was developed for the purpose of using it with traditional classroom materials. Often there was a single computer for the classroom or a small computer lab that served the entire school.

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toward “one to one,” where every child has a device.


device, letting the students quickly and easily record and edit their own video and audio. Plus, iPhones and iPads are now utterly familiar to students, who already spend a good deal of their time with them outside of school, notes Richard Stephenson, CEO of Yudu, a company that provides a self-publishing platform for digital publishers. Stephenson also points out that digital textbooks on mobile devices are simply much more portable. Referring to lugging around heavy books in their backpacks, he says, “Kids can do without this everyday stress to the spine—a clear benefit of digital.”


What does it mean that, in the words of Chou, today’s textbooks are being “born digital”? Digital textbooks have long been more than simply replicas of print textbooks. They use multimedia such as video and audio, and typically now have interactive content, such as a 3-D model of a DNA molecule that you can rotate to view from all angles. In addition, a range of other state-of-the-art features are rapidly being integrated, including social networking components. Digital textbooks are also increasingly adaptive, meaning the specific material they present depends on how quickly the student is catching on. Also, there’s the obvious fact that digital textbooks can be instantly updated, whereas the replacement cycle for print textbooks is typically every 5–6 years. Plus, they’re sometimes flexible, meaning that teachers can contribute their own content.

THE MOBILE REVOLUTION And what does it mean that, as Chou says, today’s textbooks are being “born mobile”? Textbooks on an iPad have big advantages over those on a computer, says Jeffrey Rothenberger, a program administrator in the Office of Professional Development and Curriculum in Berks County, Pennsylvania. “They’re a lot more interactive than a laptop,” he says. Textbooks on computers often use the ePub format, which has somewhat limited multimedia capability. iPads, on the other hand, are more interactive, more manipulative, and can contain 3-D objects. And they’re more of a multimedia


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To get a feel for some interactive features, download Life on Earth, a free textbook by famed biologist E.O. Wilson in the iBookstore. You can examine the genome, for example, and rotate a 3-D nucleosome in an interactive illustration. Processes such as chromosome separation and the phases of

mitosis are illustrated with a movie and an interactive graphic. Short videos of Wilson introduce the concepts of an ecosystem and human evolution. Time-lapse satellite imagery shows the waxing and waning of fires on the African savanna. A review summarizes the ecology section and offers questions, one of which shows a map of North and Central America with four locations marked. Your task is to drag an image of the correct biome to the location marked on the map.

While this textbook doesn’t have some of the latest features such as adaptive learning and social sharing, it's still a great example of how the digital medium would be more engaging for a student than print.


student, teaching the skills and strategies he or she needs to remedy any deficiencies. Rather than being tested on the material they read, the students write summaries to demonstrate their comprehension.

iLit provides the students with real-time feedback and coaching on informal summary writing and formal essays, helping them to write and rewrite their summaries. This way they’re able to practice their skills before submitting for grading. According to Pearson, it’s the only reading intervention program with technology-based writing coaching. Science Techbook ( The Techbook series from Discovery Education, built from the ground up as a digital textbook, uses the web and integrates text, audio, video, images, and “digital investigations.”

Let’s take a look at a few of the offerings from major publishers of digital textbooks. The examples below are each typically part of an extensive suite of offerings. iLit ( Chou is especially excited about Pearson’s iLit for the iPad, which launched in January and is oriented toward students who are struggling with reading. If ever there were a subject in need of individualized learning, reading is it: children in a classroom typically read at many different levels and have very different interests. iLit offers each student personalized learning based on his or her needs, as well as offering interactive content and built-in reward systems that help motivate students and track their progress. In an iLit classroom, the day begins with each student selecting an interesting text from a library culled from Pearson’s large collection of published books. iLit guides the

For example, the third-grade lesson on color includes various animations, one of which shows a rainbow and labels the colors, and the other of which uses voice-over audio to demonstrate light refracting through a prism. The book includes a digital journal in which students write down the

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question they’re investigating (why objects have color) and then list the evidence they’ve gleaned from reading, watching video, and completing interactive exercises. The Techbooks are updated in “real-time,” meaning that cutting-edge advances and current issues automatically become part of the curriculum. A unique feature is that Techbooks incorporate the Discovery Channel’s Mythbusters episodes to provide students with the opportunity to view a series of real-life investigations and conduct peer review, mirroring an important role in the science process.

this year they introduced a 3-D, multiplayer game for college courses in American Government. The game simulates the experience of being a member of the U.S. Congress, allowing students to apply the concepts and principles they’re learning in the classroom by collaborating with and competing against their fellow students to garner political capital and get re-elected. Government in Action and the other games in the McGraw-Hill Practice suite are designed to reinforce learning while increasing engagement. Campbell Biology ( This textbook is one of Inkling’s bestsellers, and students can actually choose between the print or digital version. In fact, students at over 80% of U.S. medical schools are using the Inkling version of the assigned textbook.

SmartBook ( Oriented toward college students, a series of textbooks from McGraw-Hill in 90 different subject areas is built around the new and powerful technique of adaptive learning. Called SmartBook, this digital textbook for the iPad has similarities to a traditional textbook in that the focus is on reading the material, but it has one big difference: it assesses the students’ knowledge of the topic and skill levels as they read and then displays content on the concepts that students still need to master. SmartBook continuously monitors the students’ learning as they read by presenting questions. Plus, it tracks the way they read and learn in order to predict the optimal way to present forthcoming material. It also predicts what the students are most likely to forget and helps them review that particular material. Government In Action ( Showing its versatility, McGraw-Hill has also recently jumped into the game-based approach to learning. Earlier


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The digital version has a ton of multimedia content: over 60 3-D models, over 140 guided tours, and over 250 slideshows, as well as many videos. There are also over 30 image hotspots that allow you to test your knowledge. The digital version also includes quizzes that give you immediate feedback, and features a social component that lets you share notes and participate in discussions. You can download a free sample chapter of Campbell Biology in the iBookstore to give it a test run.

CURATED ONLINE CONTENT Today’s textbook publishers face a special challenge: all the free resources available online (see my article on page 26). Some schools are actually eschewing textbooks and simply compiling and organizing the free stuff for their students. Interestingly, Pearson is on top of this trend too, seeing itself as a curator of online content, and is using its experts to select and organize only the highest-quality online resources. According to Chou, these “learning object repositories” are “collections of rich-media learning objects that are aligned to Common Core standards and curated with educationally relevant information, such as grade-level appropriateness and complexity.” In addition to providing textbooks, Pearson also intends to make these curated collections available (including free material) and has created the Online Learning Exchange (


ticularly those kids that have traditionally struggled with conventional teaching methods. The ability to juxtapose video clips, animation, and links to more data alongside the text is hugely powerful, allowing instant drill-down and visual communication without leaving the page. Digital will bring marginal learners into the mainstream.” Stephenson says the notion of “textbook” is ultimately going to change. Instead of seeing it as a set of pages, we’ll see it as content arranged by subject. As we’ve seen above, that content can come from a publisher, from free online sources, and from the teacher. It’s media-rich, keeps the students socially connected, and can adapt to each student’s needs. The transformation of the textbook has been so complete that the word “textbook” itself may soon become a symbol of the past. Ѷ Jim Karpen, Ph.D, is on faculty at Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield, IA. He has been writing about the revolutionary consequences of computer technology since 1994. His Ph.D dissertation anticipated the Internet revolution. His site,, contains selected regular columns written for The Iowa Source.

All of these special features of digital textbooks help children learn “faster and deeper,” says Stephenson, “par-

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By Daniel W. Rasmus

people don't "get" Twitter. They think of it as a social network on which celebrities share their breakfast preferences or big companies tell you about their products, even if no one is listening. But people do listen on Twitter. For marketers, a personal Twitter presence demonstrates your potential ability to influence other people. If you can't market yourself on Twitter, recruiters ask, how will you be able to market their products? Twitter is for more than marketing, though. It is often a first news source, for the reporting of everything from celebrity deaths to global political movements. (As I write this, I learned of the bombings in Boston not from CNN, but from Twitter.) Twitter offers a deceptively simple formula: say what you will in 140 characters. Those 140 characters can include links to pictures or to other websites. Twitter is both a place to say things, and a place to share.

Retweeting's the Key Unlike Facebook, which relies on "likes" and comments, Twitter revolves around retweets. A retweet takes an existing message and forwards it to the retweeter's community of followers. If the original user posts a tweet to 1,000 people, and one


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of those people retweets that same message to their 1,000 followers, it greatly increases the reach of that message. The likelihood of high overlap is pretty small. That is why marketers like Twitter. Oreo’s “You can still dunk in the dark” tweet launched during the power outage of the Super Bowl quickly went viOreo’s “You can still dunk in the dark” tweet went viral during this year’s ral. Every major Super Bowl blackout. news outlet and talk show kept that tweet alive well into the next day. Twitter eventually included the ability to mark tweets as “favorites,” so people can like tweets without retweeting them.

The Birth of the Hashtag Like other technologies that catch fire, Twitter spurs innovation. Twitter created a market for compression, especially for shortening URLs. Many tools now exist that turn long URLs into very short ones, which keeps the character count down. Compression of messages also come from the use of SMS translations like "LOL" for "laughing out loud" and more easily recognized shorthand like "u," "&," and "r." Finally, Twitter has become home to the hashtag. Because Twitter doesn't include user-editable metadata, people use the pound sign, or "#" as a way to categorize their tweets. For example, if you search for the term #iPhonetips, you’ll see tweets from everyone who written about some sort of iPhone tip.

Insights from Every Corner of Society For most people, Twitter is a vast listening post for the cacophony of voices that makes up human society. Tweets can be neutral, inspirational, or offensive, and they arrive from every corner of the planet. I teach a class titled "Mastering Social Media," and I tell students that Twitter can help them establish themselves as a relevant voice in their field or industry. I tell them to chime in about a favorite cause, or share their enthusiasm about a band or a book. Twitter may seem trivial, but it is no more trivial than our morning “hellos” or our lunchtime conversations about Downton Abbey or Game of Thrones. And because Twitter is open and mostly transparent, the data can be mined, providing insights into what’s happening in the moment, or into how people feel about a brand.

“Because Twitter is open and mostly transparent, the data can be mined, providing insights into what’s happening in the moment.”

Twitter can be a personal branding engine and an educator. It can also be an insightful portal into society and pop culture.

Key Twitter Terms Tweet: 140-character text message. May include a URL link. Retweet: The act of sending a tweet to your followers that’s already been posted by another person. Mention: Using someone’s Twitter handle in a tweet, as in “@DanielWRasmus just wrote this gr8 article on iOS tweeting.” DM: Stands for Direct Message, where you use Twitter to send messages like private emails. Both parties must be following each other, and the messages are limited to 140 characters. Hashtag: Using the “#” with a phrase to create a category or metadata about a tweet. &OLLOWERSomeone who subscribes to your Twitter feed. Lists: You can place Twitter members you follow into specific lists, which can be public or private.

Tweeting from iDevices So what does iOS bring to the Twitter party? For the most part, it brings mobility. Your iOS device can be your primary platform for tweeting. Unlike for longer forms of writing, the virtual keyboard doesn't impede tweeting. The lack of multiple windows can make cutting and pasting URLs little more challenging, but that’s hardly a hindrance.

Like the Internet in general, all imaginable ideas flow through the Twitter stream. Unlike Facebook, which is supposed to be tied to a personal address, Twitter offers a much more liberal relationship. Twitter permits multiple accounts, and it just requires a unique email. This makes Twitter a much more flexible tool, but also a potentially dangerous one. Anonymous people don’t always follow the rules, and you can find plenty of rule breakers on Twitter. Those unprofessional activities, however, aren’t the focus here.

Your iDevice’s virtual keyboard works perfectly for sending short and timely tweets.

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Because of Twitter’s popularity, many iOS apps come with the ability to tweet from inside the app. Apple has made using Twitter easier by including it as a core partner in the operating system. That means you can send tweets from within several built-in apps (like Photos) without having to separately log in to Twitter through the Twitter app. To set up Twitter on your iDevice, open Settings>Twitter and then log in with your account information. Some complementary Twitter apps will ask for independent authorization in order to use them. As popular as Twitter is, social media is still new and the kinks haven’t been worked out of all the interfaces. If you ever feel uncomfortable with the way an app is accessing your data from a security standpoint, you can disable it by going to Settings>Twitter and scrolling down to the section where allowed apps are listed. From there, you can revoke access from that app to your Twitter account.

vides one-click access to the top tweets of the day, so users can determine if they want to align with hot topics. Given that Twitter can also include location information, TweetCaster integrates with a map to show who is tweeting near your location. Overall, TweetCaster is a solid tool for effective tweeting.

Example Tweets

Use Twitter app 4 basic tweeting on iOS #tweetadvice frm @iphonelife

Highly recommend HootSuite and TweetCaster 4 professional management of ur Twitter experience #tweetadvice frm @iphonelife

Tools and Apps for Tweeting Beyond URL shortening services like, Twitter users have a couple of strong tools for managing their social interactions. Twitter (Free, I use the Twitter app for on-the-go and rapidfire tweeting while at conferences. This basic tool gives you everything you need to manage a single Twitter account. If you are just doing basic tweeting, this is probably the only app you will need. If sharing cool photos is your thing, then the Twitter app is the best way to edit photos on the spot. HootSuite (Free, If you manage multiple Twitter accounts, or want to link your Facebook, Foursquare, and LinkedIn accounts to a single tool, HootSuite is the service for you. Beyond account connections, HootSuite also organizes your previous searches into columns so you can monitor lists or hashtags easily and effectively. The use of columns puts everything, from tweets to mentions, on one page view. Once you establish a HootSuite account, all of your customized searches, accounts, and other preferences travel across platforms, including browsers. Perhaps most important to professional tweeters is the scheduling function, which allows people to create a series of tweets and then release them over time without additional interaction. HootSuite is the best choice for social media campaigns that stretch beyond Twitter. TweetCaster (Free, $4.99 for pro version via in-app purchase, TweetCaster performs all the basic Twitter functions, but it also includes a smart list maker and a unique bookmarking feature for tracking searches. TweetCaster also pro-


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Stay away frm tweets u might regret l8r. #tweetadvice frm @iphonelife

The Best Twitter-Enabled Apps &LIPBOARD (free, I have a personal ritual. First thing in the morning, I open up Flipboard—a gorgeously designed news aggregator app—to browse through tweets from people I follow, and I retweet the items I find interesting. Sometimes I add my own comments, but for the most part I just retweet. Photos (free, built-in) You can tweet any photo from your Photo albums or photo stream by opening the photo, tapping on the Action icon, and selecting the Twitter option. If you want to edit the photo before you send it out to the world, I recommend opening the image through the Twitter app, as it supports filters, color correction, and cropping.

&OURSQUARE (free, and GetGlue (free, I am an avid Foursquare user, and I use GetGlue to complement physical check-ins and share my television viewing habits. Foursquare and GetGlue "gamify" experiences, offering badges and reward offers whenever you check in or achieve certain milestones. Even if you only use Twitter for professional branding, tweeting about trade journal articles, and sharing lessons learned, posting tweets about your personal interests can make you come across as more human and authentic. Pulse (free,; iPad version: For tracking news stories, I use Pulse as a feed consolidator. Pulse includes a sharing feature that can tweet the link to an article in a couple of taps.

Tweeting My Way Out Twitter can be a powerful marketing tool, especially for individuals and brands trying to create a sense of competency and credibility within a segment of the population. Most of us aren’t going to have as many followers as Ashton Kutcher, Lady Gaga, or Justin Bieber. Twitter is, however, a democratic platform where people vote with their follows, so who knows? If you say interesting things, share insightful content, and actively engage your community, you might become the master of your own Twitter domain. Ѷ Daniel W. Rasmus, author of Listening to the Future and Management by Design, is a strategist and industry analyst who helps clients put their future in context. Rasmus was the Director of Business Insights at Microsoft Corporation, and today is a consultant and internationally recognized speaker. He blogs for Fast Company and iphonelife. com. You can reach him at

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Remember It All with Evernote A Must-Have App for Capturing Notes On the Go By Hal Goldstein

n high school in the 1960s, we wrote our research papers using 3” x 5” note cards. On each card, we would pen in notes, a title, and labels (commonly known now as tags). With intelligent tagging, the same card could be used for multiple reports. For example, a note entitled “The Emancipation Proclamation” might contain additional tags such as “Lincoln,” “Civil War,” and “anti-slavery.”


Fifty years later in our digital world, Evernote (free, takes this same simple note-card model and bumps it up a notch, creating an incredibly powerful, useful app for storing and retrieving documents of all kinds. Evernote saves all your notes, scans, photos, and more in the cloud so that you can access them from your computer, iPhone, or iPad. For example, the free version of Evernote can be used to track projects, track clients, do research, and keep recipes. In my article on page 96, I describe how I pair Evernote with the Getting Things


Done (GTD) system to organize my stuff and determine daily to-do lists. On a larger scale, by using Evernote Premium at

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$5/month or Evernote Business at $10/ month, colleagues can collaborate and share project and reference notebooks.

Evernote Fundamentals I’d heard of Evernote for years before I started using it, but I never quite got how it worked. Here are some basics. The main unit of Evernote is a “note.” Notes can consist of text, PDFs, photos, videos, or audio, and can have file attachments. Notes may be grouped into “notebooks,” and notes may be tagged with user-created labels. For Evernote to be useful, it needs to become all encompassing for some universe of content. If you prefer, you can start slowly, and create a notebook for a single project. Everything having to do with that project—like reference material, assignments, or tasks—becomes a note in a notebook.

s Evernote web clipper add-on for browsers: Capture content on a web page with a PC or Mac and import it into Evernote. Webnote ( captures web images on iOS devices for Evernote. sAutomatic OCR of JPG files: Search handwriting and text in image files. Can use iOS camera. sUses iPad/iPhone features: Take photo of white board or paper for automatic OCR; take audio notes; Evernote autorecords location of note. sLink notes: Add links to other notes within a note (e.g., link a note with trip details to a master travel note). sReminders: Combine in-app and emailbased reminders; make quick, note-based to-do lists; pin to-dos to top of your list.

In my case, as described on page 96, I use Evernote as a depository for ideas, emails, documents, and scanned papers. I tag each item and store it in either my Action Items or Reference notebook. I review my action notes often to determine my daily and weekly to-do lists.

sCheckboxes: Create lists for reusable action items, such as a grocery shopping list.

For power and effectiveness, searching your notes in Evernote rivals Google Search. You can find notes using tags or any text phrase, and your search can span across specific notebooks or all notebooks. Automatic optical character recognition (OCR) means that you can even find text and handwriting from image notes, including those taken by the iPhone or iPad camera. You can also save sophisticated searches that combine text, notebook location, and tags.

sSophisticated search: Perform simple or complex searches that can be saved.

Furthermore, many software programs such as web browsers, Outlook, and iOS apps—and even paper scanners such as Fujitsu’s ScanSnap—have Evernote addins, which make moving content from other applications to Evernote fast and easy.

Features and Benefits

s Personal Evernote email address: BCC or forward emails directly into Evernote; add codes to subject to automatically tag and assign notebook to note.

sBusiness version: $10/month per user. 2GB upload/month; all premium features plus better collaboration functionality; business library.

Tags Versus Notebooks Evernote starts as a blank slate with no tags and one default notebook. When organizing content, you may wonder whether you should have lots of notebooks or lots of tags or both. I’ve read threads that convinced me to favor tags, but other people, such as Alexandra Samuel, author of the excellent e-book Work Smarter with Evernote ($3.47, amazon. com), seem to favor notebooks.

Learning Quickly

s Merge notes: Easily combine titles; tag notes. sDifferent note views: View notes as lines, snippets, or thumbnails in one or more notebooks or tags. sOutlook add-on: Click an icon in Outlook to copy email to Evernote. Add-ons available for other email clients such as Gmail. sEvernote add-on library (“Trunk”): Search library of apps that work with or are dedicated to Evernote. s Twitter integration: Capture your tweets or those from your Twitter stream; send yourself a note from Twitter. s Share notebooks: Make notebooks available to anyone for viewing.

In order to give you a feel for the power of Evernote, here's a list of my favorite Evernote features and their corresponding benefits.

of attachments and PDFs; others can edit shared notebooks; offline notebook download for iOS devices.

Another nice thing about Evernote is that it doesn’t require a big learning curve, though there are plenty of tutorials and discussion threads available if you need a little help getting started. In addition to Samuel’s e-book mentioned above, try Brandon Collins's e-book Mastering Evernote The 2 Hour Guide ($3.47, You should also listen to Daniel Gold and Andy Traub’s very useful podcast about Evernote ( Also, be sure to check out additional references in my article on page 96. Ѷ Hal Goldstein is the founder, partner, and Senior Editor of iPhone Life. Hal founded Thaddeus Computing in May 1985, and remains CEO. Since its inception, Thaddeus Computing has written about, bought, and sold pre-owned mobile computers. Hal lives in Fairfield, Iowa, with his wife and co-founder, Rita.

sPremium version: $5/month, $45/year; 1 GB upload/month (instead of 60MB) and up to 100MB/note; auto searches

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Sadie Cornelius Age: 30 Location: Austin, Texas One-Line Bio: Sadie is the Director of Marketing for Cover Story Media, Inc. (, leading the charge on all brand management, social media strategy, graphic design, and marketing growth initiatives.



WatchESPN: Watch live-streaming sports in the palm of your hand. My husband loves using this app to watch Duke basketball games when we’re not in front of a TV.

Bank of America: Secure online banking lets you transfer money between accounts and even deposit checks via photo. It saves me so many trips to the bank!

Nike +: Track your runs and walks with GPS that measures your distance, speed, and pace, and keeps a running tally of your best times and total distance. Plus, it has the option to get cheers from friends (or Tim Tebow)!

Protect America: Disarm and arm your alarm system from your iPhone. I can even use it to see inside my house from afar, using the digital security camera.

#OMMUNICATIONS&OLDER .EWS&OLDER &EEDLY My new favorite app to replace Google Reader. I use it religiously to stay up to date with the news, organized by topic. I love the colorful layout, which is full of visuals and offers lots of sharing options.

0HOTO6IDEO&OLDER Instagram: I can't get enough of this app! I'm a very visual person who loves taking photos, so it's a nice diversion whenever I'm waiting in line or have a few moments of downtime between emails.


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Voxer: Voxer is a voice, text, and photo message service that turns your cell phone into a walkie talkie. It's a great substitution for texting, especially on the go. We use the group chat feature quite a bit at Cover Story Media. Evernote: I use Evernote as a ďŹ ling cabinet for things like my marriage certiďŹ cate, car insurance card, copy of my passport, and other reference documents I might need to access.

7ORK&OLDER Dropbox: Safely store and access your ďŹ les, photos, and documents on the go. I use it to send ďŹ les to others.



f you want to take full advantage of your iPhone’s Camera app, you need to acquire the right apps and the best gear. Here are some amazing photography apps you can use to make your images stand out from the pack, along with an accessory that will simplify shooting on the go. Koloid ($0.99,

When was the last time you stepped into a darkroom? Not for a while? Never? Well, here’s your chance. Koloid, the new app by 19th Century Apps, lets you experience what it was like to process photographs in a darkroom—but without the smells and toxic chemicals.

the developers are working on alternative processing options for future updates. This is how it works: First, you snap your photograph or import one from your photo album; then you select the level of collodion liquid you wish to apply. The app asks you to shake your phone in order to initiate the development, which is a fun way to get you involved in the process. An orange liquid appears on the screen, and you get to control exactly where the liquid moves and how long to hold it on any given part of the image. The longer you allow the liquid to sit, the darker the impression of the print—and if you hold the liquid in one place for too long, it will result in a burned spot.

APP AT A GLANCE DESIGN USABILITY OPTIONS USABILITY EXPORTING Good: No one photograph ends up the same, and the interface is fantastic. Not so good: It needs more filter options, and it doesn’t allow you to export to other photo-editing apps.

The collodion process, introduced in the 1850s, is an early photographic process involving black and white prints. Koloid emulates this vintage method, only allowing you to process images in black and white in the app. I’ve heard chatter that

Is it worth paying for? Yes, but only if you really love black and white and don’t mind waiting a while to develop your images.

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Mextures ($0.99,

Good: It’s an enjoyable, well-thought-out app that’s simple to use and has tons of options.

It’s been a while since I’ve seen a fresh take on a photo filter app, but Mextures really comes through. With unparalleled controls and intriguing textures, Mextures is a professional-looking app with one of the best interfaces in the App Store. It took me a while to get adventurous with the textures, but believe me, once you figure out the basics, you’ll have a great time. The app gives you the option to select premade formulas created by guests. I still need to figure out who these guests are, but I assume they are friends of the creator. You can also save your own formulas to use on other images you import from your library. Don’t you love smart features?

Not so good: It only has square ratio, and you can’t share to Flickr or Tumblr.


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Is it worth paying for? Yes, most definitely. Get it now—you’ll love it! &OCUS4WIST ($1.99, Focus, refocus, now twist! No, this isn’t the latest dance trend. If you’ve been wanting to add a little twist to your photos without having to use a layer mask and a stylus, FocusTwist does the trick. FocusTwist is a powerful camera and sharing app (not an editing app) that lets you refocus your photos. Using FocusTwist is simple: Just take the photo with depth of field and composition in mind, select the focus area with your finger, and the app does the rest. You’ll have beautiful shots in an instant!

I have two gripes with FocusTwist: you can only photograph in square mode, and the snap isn’t instant. It actually tells you to hold still while it captures. The delay is a few seconds long, even when affixed to a spring mount and pocket tripod. I would not advise using this app when you need to capture an image quickly. Additionally, the social integration is lacking in features, but I give the developer credit for trying. And it’s disappointing that the app doesn’t let you import images from your library. On the plus side, this app does have configurable settings. For example, you can save images to the camera roll at its highest resolution of 1024 x 1024, but capturing the image takes even longer, so change this in settings at your own risk. Unfortunately, 1024 x 1024 is only good for web and not really useful for print— but who’s being nitpicky here?


which you can position vertically or horizontally for portrait or landscape photography.

DESIGN USABILITY OPTIONS USABILITY EXPORTING Good: It’s simple to use and refocuses photos well. Not so good: Features square ratio only, and doesn’t allow sharing to Flickr or Tumblr. Also, you can’t export (not even to Instagram), but the app has its own social stream. Is it worth paying for? Maybe. This should be a free app with an option to purchase additional features. I would only recommend it if you have trouble using apps with masks.

If you’re looking for a steady shot or simply love taking selfportraits or group shots, this product combination will satisfy your needs. Ѷ John Toma is a professional photographer, writer, and public speaker residing in San Diego, CA. He is an accomplished iPhoneographer and has appeared on television to speak about the field of photography. John also is a sought-after speaker on topics relating to photography, technology, and media. Check out his website at, and follow John on Instagram @jt25.


Pocket Tripod and Spring Mount ($5.95-$14.95, Don’t feel like carrying around a heavy tripod? Opt for the Pocket Tripod instead. Use it with the Spring Mount, and you’ve got an entire iPhoneography expert package! Square Jellyfish put some serious thought into its design with this combination. The Pocket Tripod can support your phone or point-and-shoot camera, while the Spring Mount is designed for your phone,

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speakers for every room A Guide to Bluetooth Speakers in the Home

By Daniel W. Rasmus


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ntil recently, a standard feature in every high-end home was a central system of conduits to run cables for cable TV, Internet, and a central sound system. High-end audio systems would typically include pre-installed speakers in every room and volume knobs next to every entrance.

Now that we’re in the second decade of the 21st century, that model looks pretty obsolete. Homes may still use a limited amount of wired Internet, but beyond connecting to the cable modem and Wi-Fi router, its days are numbered. Complicated central sound systems are giving way to personal, portable Bluetooth systems. This article will cover several outstanding Bluetooth products, but this isn’t an exhaustive list. Bluetooth speakers are one of the hottest areas of technology growth, so new models arrive regularly. When you look through these speakers, pay close attention to the features that make each speaker the right choice for the room with which it’s paired. Enjoy!

wake you to the radio or buzzer, gradually increasing the volume until you rise from your deep stupor.

for the kitchen

for the bedroom

3OUNDFREAQ3OUND2ISE .OVO&REAQ ($125, The bedroom is a tricky place for a sound system, as it’s in direct competition with alarm clocks, early morning news, and a variety of late-night noises, depending on what you’re into. For the bedroom, let’s look at the Sound Rise - Novo Freaq. This alarm clock and Bluetooth speaker combo from Soundfreaq can also charge an iPhone, an iPad, or another device. It has a built-in FM radio, so you won’t miss out on the news. Style is important in a bedroom piece, and the Novo Freaq features plenty of personality. Since it’s taller than it is wide, the speaker takes up minimal precious nightstand space while still looking great. If you have an older device you occasionally want to plug in and listen to, the auxiliary jack has you covered. Perhaps the most important feature of this Bluetooth speaker is its ability to function independently regardless of whether there’s an iDevice connected to it. Even if you stumble in late at night and forget to dock your iDevice, the Novo Freaq will still

Logitech UE Boombox ($249.99, First rule of the kitchen: keep your speaker away from the sink. If you can’t follow this rule, then take a look at the speakers under the “bathroom” or “outdoors” categories. My kitchen is currently home to the Logitech UE Boombox. It’s mostly made out of metal, and it’s solid and really loud. It fits well with anodized aluminum pots and pans, and it’s also small enough to push against the backsplash so it’s out of the way. The convenient handle and built-in battery prove very important for a kitchen, because unlike most places in a home, the kitchen is under constant reorganization. Mix here, stir there, pound the chicken over there, roll the dough… well, you get the idea. And when you need space, you need to move what is currently in that space someplace else. When you unplug the UE Boombox to move it, you won’t need to plug it back in for hours. That means no outlet competition for the mixer, the blender, or the toaster oven.

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The kitchen is shared space, so the speaker should accommodate multiple parties. The UE Boombox will pair with up to 8 Bluetooth devices, and connect to 3 of them at the same time. At up to 50 feet, the range is excellent.

for the dining room

Logitech UE Mobile Boombox ($99.99, For the dining room, you might also consider the Logitech UE Mobile Boombox. It’s more compact than the JBL Flip, but it doesn’t offer the same level of sound quality in the microphone or the speaker. Both, however, do a serviceable job as Bluetooth conference phones.

for the bathroom

*",&LIP ($99.95, If you’re listening to music in the kitchen and then migrate to the dining room, I recommend bringing the Logitech UE Boombox along. But what if you want to FaceTime or Skype, or just call a family member while sitting around the table? You’re going to need something to act as a speakerphone. For this, I suggest the JBL Flip. The Flip offers great sound, Bluetooth wireless connectivity, and a built-in microphone for conference calls. It’s about as big as a small water bottle, and comes in four colors: black, white, red, and blue.


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G-Project G-BOOM Wireless Boombox ($99.99, The bathroom, aside from hosting long showers and soothing baths (and other uses we won’t go into here), often acts as a dressing room, beauty parlor, and relaxation chamber. For those functions, you need tunes. I personally like to lie back in the bathtub and watch streaming video while I unwind. The little speaker from my iPad just doesn’t fill the room, and the sound gets easily lost when the fan is going.

For the bathroom, I suggest the G-Project G-BOOM. It’s a monster of a boombox, with a rugged, rubberized exterior that won’t take to submersion, but also won’t squawk at a few splashes every now and then. It’s rechargeable, so you can move it around—I often point it at the shower and then flip it back to the open room after drying off. The G-BOOM can handle the highs and lows of music while projecting voice sounds in crisp tones.

they already have a home. I don’t want to run after speakers when I need them where they were intended to be.

for the home office

Swissvoice BH01i ePure Mobile Bluetooth Station ($142.43, Another speakerphone solution for the office is the BH01i ePure Mobile Bluetooth Station. This phone is a unique combination of phone and speakers, as well as charging station. It sports a unique style and plays music brilliantly. The ePure offers 300 hours of standby, 6 hours of talk, and 3.5 hours of music streaming. Soundfreaq Sound Platform 2 ($149.99, Here’s a tricky one with a clear and not-so-clear answer. My hands-down choice for the home office is the Soundfreaq Sound Platform 2. If you buy a pair and synchronize them, you not only get great sound, but you receive good separation of left and right signals. They look great, and they can double as chargers for your devices (buying two means you can charge two devices directly from the speakers). But the downside is that they take up a lot of room and don’t have a speakerphone function. I tend to have the Sound Platform 2 connected to my Mac in the office, and not my iPad or iPhone. With the Mac running, I don’t really need the iPad for sound, but rather as a second screen for research (or to sling a few ill-tempered birdies during a break). Except in the quietest environments, the iPhone’s speakerphone often needs assistance. I could bring in the JBL Flip or the Logitech UE Mobile Boombox, but despite their portability,


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for the hotel room

JBL Charge ($149.95, The JBL Charge offers full, dynamic sound and a battery big enough for up to 12 hours of playback. That big battery can

also charge an iPhone or iPad via the built-in USB charging port (thus the name). The only thing missing from this speaker is a microphone. I’ve started carrying a Native Union POP Bluetooth handset ($39.99,, which looks like an old-fashioned handset, for phone calls. It just feels so cool to talk on a classic red handset. It’s like my own personal Bat Phone. But back to the JBL Charge—if you keep it out of the water, it also does a fine job in the confines of a hotel bathroom.

But hold on—you might also want to consider the G-BOOM’s more portable cousins, the G-GO and the G-GRIP. If you are going to be surrounded by water, opt for the G-GO. It’s splash proof, and runs on two AA batteries that give you about 8 hours of on-the-go music playback. If you are planning on exposing your speaker to danger, consider the G-GRIP, which can handle up to an 8-foot drop and 1,339 lbs. of crush force. It’s the perfect companion for off-roading or going to the rodeo.

is bluetooth the best solution? Fading out I’m going Bluetooth contrarian here. Since most media rooms are literally wired for sound, you can use all of that investment to set up shared audio on an iPad or iPod—just get an extra-long HDMI cable and plug in. But you may also be all Apple all the time, which means you use AirPlay. If you have an AirPlay-compatible receiver or accessory connected to your receiver, by all means, use that.

At the beginning of the article, I mentioned central speaker systems as a 20th-century aspiration. In the 21st century, we don’t need any wires. For the cost of built-in speakers alone, and perhaps much less, you can put the right device in each room, or move a couple around as necessary, depending on your budget. Happy listening! Ѷ Daniel W. Rasmus, author of Listening to the Future and Management by Design, is a strategist and industry analyst who helps clients put their future in context. Rasmus was the Director of Business Insights at Microsoft Corporation, and today is a consultant and internationally recognized speaker. He blogs for Fast Company and iphonelife. com. You can reach him at

for the outdoors

G-Project G-GRIP (top) and G-GO (bottom) ($69.99 each, Last but not least is the front porch, back deck, or the great outdoors. If you really like your G-BOOM, bring it along. It’s even got sport straps so you can wear it rather than lug it.

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Accessories for the iMusician Take Your Music to the Next Level By Cornelius A. Fortune



hether you're a music-industry professional or a novice looking to find a creative outlet, there are tons of great apps available to take you closer to your dream of music stardom. Once you download your musicmaking apps, like Apple’s GarageBand ($4.99,, you’ll want to get busy creating the next radio hit—and your iDevice is more than capable of helping you get the job done. But you're going to need a powerful set of accessories, especially if you’re a guitarist, keyboardist, singer, or DJ. Here’s some essential gear to get you started on your quest to craft the perfect recording.

MIDI Controllers If you’re used to playing a real keyboard, a MIDI controller is an indispensable tool that will create greater nuance in your performances. MIDI controllers bridge the gap between analog and digital. Some come with 88 keys, like a piano, while others are much smaller. The M-Audio line has established itself as a leader in producing quality products that musicians can trust. Here are a few of my favorite models.


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M-Audio Oxygen 25 ($99.99, With just 25 keys to work with, the Oxygen 25 may seem cramped and restrictive to the average songwriter or producer wanting to launch into iPad recording. Then again, some producers actually enjoy the challenge of doing more with less. If you’re a beginner or you think its size won’t restrict your creativity, then the ultra-portable Oxygen 25 is the MIDI Controller for you.

TASCAM's iXZ is the ultimate portable interface for recording with your iOS device. It provides the inputs you need to record from nearly any acoustic or electric instrument and any of the thousands of recording apps in the App Store, including GarageBand or TASCAM's Portastudio ($2.99, And it’s also a great price! M-Audio KeyRig 49 ($99.99, This one's a basic keyboard, but with its 49 keys, pitch-bend wheel, and editing features, it’s a great starter piece at an affordable price. Its mid-size frame is roomy enough for many beginner or intermediate musicians without being too much to handle for those just starting out.

M-Audio Oxygen 88 ($599.99, If you want a MIDI controller that feels like a grand piano, look no further than this attractive model. It’s the perfect bridge between analog and digital, and ideal for the discerning performer wanting to enter the 21st century of music production without comprising artistry. In the case of this keyboard controller, you’re going to get what you pay for—it’s pricey, but you’ll get plenty of value for your investment.

Alesis iO Dock ($179.28, With the Alesis iO Dock, you’ve got everything you need to perfect your mix, record your own songs, and enhance your inapp recordings—and you can even use this iPad audio interface in live performance situations. The iO Dock also works as a rugged case for your iPad, which is great for the stage and the road.

Music Interfaces An interface allows you to plug in external audio gear or instruments of your choice, such as a microphone or a guitar. Granted, GarageBand has great sound and some incredible effects, but if you plan on recording a piece with complexity and a rich expanse of voices, you’ll need a more robust interface in order to enhance your music.

TASCAM iXZ Audio Interface Adapter ($49.99,

&OCUSRITEI4RACK3OLO ($147, Focusrite has been producing professional audio equipment since 1985. Their iTrack Solo is compact and sturdy, and features a set of inputs that accommodates both a microphone and an instrument such as an electric guitar or bass. The iTrack is specifically made for the iPad, but it's also compatible with your PC or Mac, and it comes with a couple different types of music-creation software built in. One unique feature of the iTrack is its signal halo that changes from green to red. If it’s green, it means your audio level is good for recording. If it’s red, then the audio level is too loud and you should turn it down.

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tion, which should make all your recordings hiss-free (unless you’re going for that sort of effect).

Some say that a song is only as good as its mix. A muddy mix can dilute the impact of your song, just as a good mix has the power to make your song soar and provide listeners with the sonic escape they’re looking for. One of the biggest issues with hardware mixers is their high price point (most start at $1,000), so it should be a comfort to budget-conscious musicians that there’s a nice selection of app-ready mixers available that can be integrated into GarageBand or other music-making apps. IK Multimedia iRig MIX ($99.99, The iRig MIX is a small, lightweight mobile mixer with a huge set of features that pretty much cover everything you’ll need as a DJ. The iRig MIX is your complete system for rehearsing, performing, and recording, and it comes with four apps that you can download independently from the App Store. The apps, which are included for free with a purchase of the iRig MIX, are DJ Rig ($9.99,, AmpliTube ($19.99,, VocaLive ($19.99, app2. me/6036), and GrooveMaker (free,

Mics There’s a good chance that if you’re building a studio with your iOS device, at some point you’re going to want to record some audio. It could be vocals, acoustic guitar, or even a concert band. The built-in mic on your iDevice is not really designed to capture all the highs and lows of a performance, and since your imagination should be the only thing limiting you, it’s wise to invest in an external mic if you want to fulfill your musical vision. Apogee MiC ($199, The makers for the Apogee MiC claim it to be the “first studio-quality microphone to make a direct digital connection to iPad, iPhone, and Mac.” Well, that’s great news. And overall, the customer comments have been quite favorable about this product. It’s attractive, reliable, and versatile. You can use it for vocals, instruments, interviews, and of course, GarageBand. It also boasts a clear digital connec-


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IK Multimedia iRig Mic ($59.99, Maybe you don’t want to spend a lot of money, but you still want something decent. The iRig Mic fits the bill—and it also fits right in your hand, just like your typical microphone, only it’s designed for your iOS device. Though not built with as many complex features as the Apogee MiC, the iRig Mic gets your foot in the door without hurting your pocketbook too much. You can start with this and work your way up to the Apogee MiC once you’re ready for some more advanced capabilities and features.

Even More Gear Okay, you’re totally decked out with the necessary recording gear and ready to nail that track. What other accessories do you need?

TheGigEasy ( This company has really thought out the entire musical experience. Whether you’re a solo vocalist or in a string quartet or rock band, the product line has something for every level of play. From mounts and stands to holders and carrying cases, TheGigEasy has a well-stocked assortment of products. They even have an app, TheGigEasy ($3.99,, which provides a digital storage solution for all those score papers, lyric sheets, and chord charts you’ve been lugging around.

Rode iXY Recording Microphone for iPhone & iPad ($199, It’s possible you might not want to recreate a professional music-studio sound. Maybe for you it’s all about those live moments on stage, and capturing the seed of an idea without all the complexities involved. The iXY lets you capture a raw recording that’s still crisp and polished enough for the general public. Ѷ Cornelius A. Fortune is an award-winning journalist who covers technology, TV, and popular culture. He is the author of the book Stories from Arlington, and has written for Yahoo News, The Advocate, Chess Life, the Detroit Metro Times, and others. He is also a Rhysling Award-nominated poet. Visit his website at

Namba Gear Kucha KiM-GY iPad Messenger Bag for Musicians ($42, You can lug all your musical equipment in style with this handy messenger bag. It features a dedicated microphone compartment, an extra-long strap that can be worn across the chest, Velcro dividers that provide additional flexibility, and room for cables and accessories. As a bonus, the big pouch on the flap can accommodate a small keyboard controller.

More than Just Rock ’n’ Roll OK Go Dives into the World of App Development Interview by David Averbach


ver the past 15 years, OK Go has established itself as one of the most eclectic bands in the industry. They are known as much for their catchy pop songs as they are for their creative music videos, which collectively have gotten well over 100 million views on YouTube. OK Go’s most recent project is a mobile app— a fun word game called Say the Same Thing (free,

The premise of the game is for you and a friend (or a randomly selected partner) to try to “say” the same word at the same time. To start, each person submits a random word through the app. Once your opponent has submitted their word, you both get to see each other’s words. Then you try to say a word that connects those two words. If you say the same word, you win. If you don't, you use the two new words and think of something in between. The game doesn't stop until you say the same thing.


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I recently got a chance to talk with OK Go’s lead singer, Damian Kulash, about the band’s many projects, including their new app. I even got a chance to play a round of Say the Same Thing with him! The following is an interview excerpt, and many of the answers have been shortened. You can view the interview in its entirety on our YouTube page: David: Tell me a little bit about your app. Damian: Andy, the guitarist in our band, actually coded the app. It's a nerdy word game that we like to play in the long waits that we have at airports and so forth when we're touring. It's not about our music, it's not about our videos, it has nothing to do with the other stuff that the band has made, other than the fact that it was coded by our guitarist and it's a game we like to play. David: Where did you guys come up with the idea for this game? Damian: It’s based on an old improv game that Andy had played with his college friends. Improv comedians classically use this game to get their minds warmed up. During a long van ride, he introduced it to us and we started playing. David: Didn’t over 100 thousand people sign up to play the band in the game? Damian: Yeah. I think the number of downloads of the app is somewhere in the 700 thousand range, and a shockingly high number of them signed up to play games with the band. David: What's the reception like when you’re playing people? Damian: It's usually really warm. It's a nice way to connect and engage with fans because it's not like, "Uh, so what's your favorite color?" You know, we're actually doing something together. David: How were the other band members involved in the project? Damian: Our role was somewhere between development team and beta testers. None of us are actual coders. Andy's the only person who actually sits down and does Ruby on Rails or whatever, but we started playing it and tried to help him come up with the various features that wound up being in the game. We see the band as an outlet for whatever creative ideas we can come up with that we think are interesting. If we saw ourselves the way I think bands traditionally do, or did 5 or 10 years ago, we’d be stuck in a very small creative category. But when


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things interest us, or a good idea comes up, we want to chase it. Whether that's a video or an idea for a live show, book, article, or app, we try to chase it with equal vigor. David: Do you think that's a model that other bands will start following? Damian: I think it's more the new model for making all sorts of things. From the 1950s ’til now, music has been about the 3½-minute song and the recording industry. The real value in that whole industrial complex was the recording. Before that, music wasn't about recording. For a short time before that, in the 19th century, recordings largely did not exist. Music was alive and well, but it was just a very different thing. The mode of distribution has changed so dramatically in the last 20 years that music, filmmaking, journalism, and entertainment of all sorts are basically all ones and zeros right now. So why would you distinguish somebody who makes music from somebody who makes videos? For the most part, it’s the same skill set. David: How does releasing an app compare to releasing an album? Damian: Putting this out in the world has been super fascinating for us because it's not our territory at all. The entire time we've been in the music industry, it has been in total structural free fall. The entire thing has been imploding. So, to be releasing something in a universe where things are actually succeeding and people are happy about stuff is great. On top of that, we actually can watch all the games being played through a giant database, so there's a data set of how long people are playing, how they're engaging with it, and how many people are playing how much per day. We don't ever know that about our music. All we know are things like how many records have sold, how many times a song or record has been streamed, and how many times a video has been watched. So it's really fascinating to get into this [app] world and see what people like and why. David: Are you guys planning on making any other apps? Damian: I bet we'll make more apps. I mean, we're not so organized that we can say, "In two years, this will come out." Andy and I have been talking about a game for over a year now, but this other one has been in the pipeline first. So, if the technology will support our idea, then we've got a good game that will probably take us about a year to make. There are some other game ideas that are more music-based than the word game we've just come out with, so I'm sure there will be more games in the future. David: Do you want to give us a hint about the game that you're working on? Damian: It's a joy-of-music type game. Yeah. I'll stay with that. David: So you said you're working on an album right now. How’s that going? Damian: We're working on our fourth studio album at Dave

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Fridmann's recording studio in Cassadaga, New York. Dave is the guy who does all the records for The Flaming Lips, MGMT, and Mercury Rev. He's a hotshot. David: How does this album compare to your previous three albums?

Stats for Say the Same Thing Average rounds per win: 7.3

Damian: It's much more electronic, and I think much more poppy, which is funny because we're a pretty poppy band in the first place. It's not dance music exactly, but it's very grooveoriented and electronic.

Games played: 3.4 million

David: Do you have any ideas for videos to go along with your new album?

Total number of guesses: 35 million

Damian: We have some pretty good ideas in mind. But, as always with our videos, we have a list of 10 or 15 things that we think are awesome ideas. We come up with ridiculous stuff that we think no one will take seriously, and then we try to make them take us seriously. Which ones will actually happen, I have no idea. We'll see.

damian's favorite apps Circadia: I love Circadia. It's a beautiful graphic game. Guitar Toolkit: I use both the tuner and the metronome all the time. We play a lot of acoustic shows, and not having to carry around a tuner is wonderful. Instagram: I'm a pretty avid Instagrammer. Snapseed: I like to use Snapseed to edit the photos I take. Google Maps: I currently prefer the Google Maps app to Apple Maps. Shazam: Because music is my job and I'm such a music lover, it's hard to find stuff that really moves and surprises me, so when I do hear something that's new, I need to know what it is. Shazam is wonderful for that. Siri: I use Siri for dictation or for doing things when I'm driving (I go on a lot of road trips). Something I say a lot is, "Siri, where's the nearest Starbucks?" Ѷ


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Completed games (said the same thing): 1.41 million

Top 3 Guessed Words &OOD (240 thousand times) Dog (150 thousand times) Monkey (142 thousand times)

The E-Library

Using Your iDevice as a Library Portal By Daniel W. Rasmus hy go to the library when you can bring the library right to you? Several content providers now offer apps that turn your iPad or iPhone into a proprietary e-reader. Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook, Kobo, Apple, Zinio, and others offer rights-managed apps that integrate personal e-libraries with your iOS device. But what if you don’t own a personal e-library? Not to worry, your tax dollars have been hard at work. 76 percent of public libraries now report that they offer e-book services, up from just 9 percent the previous year. Rather than wasting your money and valuable storage space on buying books you’ll only read once, follow the time-honored tradition of borrowing from a local library.


One thing to note, however, is that libraries only offer a fraction of digital

content available for loan. Most major publishers are experimenting with library loan models, though some remain reluctant to enter into the market. The major sticking point, of course, is money. Publishers are grappling with new digital publishing models, which forces them to strike a balance between earning licensed revenue now or profiting from long-tail direct purchases from customers. While anecdotal evidence suggests that people who read books also tend to buy them, it may be some time before the economics of electronic content become clear.

little like the Wild West as technologists, lawyers, politicians, publishers, and consumers define how to make money, how to distribute content, and what it is they actually want. But despite the rapid development of technology, a couple of things will likely hold true in the future. This article will get you through the next few months, at least, if not longer. Beyond that, mergers and acquisitions, new legislation, new publishing and loan agreements, and other factors will force libraries to remain agile for the foreseeable future.

The other issue facing libraries is rampant technology innovation, leading to a number of potential content partner services as well as a plethora of devices. The only thing they know for sure is that technology like audio books on dedicated MP3 devices isn’t the technology of the future. As for everything else, it’s a

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what you will need

an overview of overdrive

One thing has always been true of the library, and it is even more important in the digital world: you will need a library card. Library cards create the digital identity required to link you to various content repositories. If you don’t have a library card, put this magazine down right now and go get one. Chances are you will be able to read the rest of the issue on your iPad or iPhone once you are registered at your local library, but we’ll get to that later.

Overdrive is a rights-management and distribution platform that offers books in a variety of forms, from Kindle to PDF. How the book is distributed is up to the publisher, and you won’t know until you find a title what app you will need to read it, so download all of the apps suggested above to be safe.

If you did what many tech-savvy readers did, which was go to the website and register for a card, you most likely aren’t done yet. Once you receive your card in the mail, you’ll need to visit a library and produce some identification to prove you are who you say you are. After all, the library card entrusts you to the care of public assets—if you don’t play well, they need to know where to find you. Next you will need an account from a digital publishing channel, such as Amazon or Zinio, and some software, like Adobe. Many of the digital library services push content through existing channels—and you need an account on those channels for that to work. You may also need the following apps, which are either required as the destination for content, or as an interface to the content for download and rights management. (Note: Apple’s iBook e-reader is not supported by current library offerings.)

s I/3 DEVICES WILL NOT PLAY CONTENT stored in Windows formats like WMV.

zinio and magazines Zinio is a digital magazine newsstand. In order to download magazines, you’ll need both a library account and a Zinio account. As with Overdrive, find the Zinio download link on your local library site. Click on it, then browse the collection (each library has its own). Find something you like and click on it. That click will invoke a Zinio login page. Once you’re connected, that page will remain active in the background as the library’s Zinio collection sends download messages to your personal account. When you’re done selecting magazines, open up the Zinio reader on your iDevice. All of the magazines you selected will appear, ready for download.

Start by going to your library’s digital download service and find the link to Overdrive. This will bring up an Overdrive session on Safari or on your PC. Browse the books or search for a title. When you find one you want, click on it, then click on borrow. Select the format, then “confirm & download.” If you selected Kindle Book, you will then be taken to an Amazon page that will let you direct the download to the device of your choice. What you need to know:

s Overdrive Media Console (Free, sZinio (Free, sKindle (Free,

s!N/VERDRIVEBOOKORAUDIOBOOKLOAN lasts between 7 and 21 days. Each item will clearly specify its loan length.

sBlio (Free,

s*USTBECAUSEABOOKISINTHELIBRARY doesn’t mean you can borrow it. Publishers only allow a certain number of simultaneous copies to be downloaded.

s3M Cloud Library (Free, app2. me/6032)

s9OUR/VERDRIVEBOOKSHELFWILLSHOW you what you have borrowed.

sTradebit (Free,

s -OST LIBRARIES LIMIT THE NUMBER OF downloads you can hold.

sNOOK (Free,

We don’t have enough space to offer tutorials on all of these systems, but here’s a look at a couple of the most common. All of the interactions below initially take place in a browser.


s9OU CAN ALSO SEARCH AND DOWNLOAD content directly from the Overdrive app on your iPad or iPhone. You’ll need to set it up by selecting your library and entering your user name and password.

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What you need to know: s :INIO MAGAZINE DOWNLOADS ARE NOT subscriptions. You will need to visit regularly to get the latest issue. s/NCEYOUDOWNLOADAMAGAZINE YOU can keep it in your library; there’s no need to return it.


A Pew Internet and American Life study published at the end of 2012 indicated that the proportion of all Americans age 16 and older who read e-books had increased from 16 to 23 percent, while the proportion of those who had read a printed book in the previous 12 months fell from 72 to 67 percent. The shifts coincide with an increase in the ownership of electronic book-reading devices.

other sources of content

There are several other services making their way onto the digital library market. Check with your library for more information about these services: s Axis 360 (—by Baker & Taylor s3M Cloud Library (— Overdrive competitor s EBrary (—Overdrive competitor sBilbary (—book rentals through an Adobe account

s24Symbols (—Netflix-style book rentals The library may not be the best bet for all your digital content needs. For some content, like NPR shows and classic books, you may want to avoid your library altogether, even though some of the content aggregators offer access. It’s less of a hassle to download directly from sites like NPR ( and Project Gutenberg (, which offers decent-quality downloads for classics and other books without copyright. When you download from Gutenberg, the content is yours forever.

the final page

Some research for school work may require resources that go beyond even the stacks at the local library. Many libraries see themselves competing with used bookstores, so they give their shelves over to bestsellers in favor of older books and research materials. The library still offers advice on where to find information they don’t have, including inter-library loans that reach out to other libraries to complement local holdings. The integration of digital content, however, is re-expanding the breadth of many libraries’ inventories, and as more publishers cut deals and relax their lending policies, even more content will become available. Your iPad and iPhone can become more valuable sources of leisuretime pleasure than you thought possible if you take the time to connect them to your local public library. Ѷ Daniel W. Rasmus, author of Listening to the Future and Management by Design, is a strategist and industry analyst who helps clients put their future in context. Rasmus was the Director of Business Insights at Microsoft Corporation, and today is a consultant and internationally recognized speaker. He blogs for Fast Company and You can reach him at

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Programming for Non-Programmers A Closer Look at iOS 7 and Xcode 5 by Kevin McNeish


very time Apple releases a new version of Xcode, its tool for creating iOS apps, the company makes it easier for people with little or no programming experience to get into app development. Its latest release, Xcode 5, is another great step in that direction. In this article, I’m going to talk about the changes to Xcode 5 and iOS 7 that non-programmers can leverage to succeed in app development.

Getting Noticed

With almost 1 million apps in the App Store, how does a new app developer get their app noticed? One way is to include features that are new to iOS. When Apple releases a new beta of iOS and Xcode, it’s a great time to take stock of what’s new and think about the type of apps you can build that take advantage of the new features. In order to get an early beta copy of iOS 7 and Xcode 5, however, you need to enroll in Apple’s iOS Developer Program ( The


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cost for joining the program is $99 per year, which is pretty low considering Xcode is free. It also allows you to submit as many apps to the App Store as you’d like during the course of the year at no extra cost.

Getting in the Game with Sprite Kit It’s no secret that the best-selling apps are games. Unfortunately, creating a game for iOS has historically been extremely difficult. That’s because Cocos2D, the 2D game framework used to create iOS games, is difficult to learn due to its complex programming interface and lack of complete documentation. In iOS 7 and Xcode 5, Apple has demonstrated that it’s ready to get serious about gaming. For example, Apple has introduced the Sprite Kit framework for building 2D games like Angry Birds. This is a big deal. Sprite Kit is everything Cocos2D isn’t—it’s beginner friendly, well documented, and well designed. Unlike the ever-changing Cocos2D framework, which required developers to constantly change their app code, the Sprite Kit looks to be a stable platform on which to build iOS games. Apple has also introduced a new Game Controller framework in iOS 7, which allows third-party companies to build controllers known as MFi (Made-for-iPhone/iPod/iPad) specifically for iOS devices. This means that you, as an app developer, won’t have to write code that integrates with specific game controllers. Instead, you can write generic code that will work with any MFi controller. Rumor has it that iOS game controllers will hit the market in September, coinciding with the release of iOS 7. When you consider the release of the Sprite Kit and the Game Controller framework and the fact that Apple TV also runs a variant of iOS (as would a much-rumored iTV), Apple’s direction in terms of gaming becomes clearer. It also makes a much more compelling case for building game apps for iOS.

AirDrop and Peer-to-Peer Connectivity Another important new feature of iOS 7 is AirDrop. Using AirDrop, you can quickly and easily send photos, videos, contacts, and documents to other iPhone 5 users who are in close proximity. To make sharing the items secure, AirDrop uses encryption over Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. It’s easy to add AirDrop functionality to your custom apps, because Apple has added AirDrop to the standard Activity Sheet that appears when a user taps the iOS Share button. It takes just a few lines of code to display the Activity Sheet in your app, which enables users to share items via AirDrop. In addition to implementing this simple sharing feature, you can also take control of this functionality by using peer-to-peer networking to communicate with nearby devices in order to exchange custom data. For example, you can create a game that allows users in the same room to play without an Internet connection, or you can use it in a business app to share information between co-workers.

Implementing the Look and Feel of iOS 7 Whether you like it or not, the new, flat look of iOS 7, with its borderless buttons, translucent bars, and edge-to-edge design, is headed your way. Fortunately, apps that were created for previous versions of iOS automatically gain the new look simply by running under iOS 7, provided that they use standard iOS user-interface controls. In iOS 6 and Xcode 4.5, Apple introduced Auto Layout, which allowed you to dynamically change the size and position of your user-interface controls to adapt to changes in device orientation and screen size without writing any code. With Auto Layout, you specify a set of constraints, such as the relative position of a control to the edge of the screen, a specific distance between controls, or a fixed height or width. In practice, however, it can be very difficult to create the right set of constraints to get your controls to change size and position exactly as needed. You can waste several hours setting up a single screen! Fortunately, in iOS 7, Apple has greatly improved the Auto Layout functionality, providing far more control over constraints. This makes it much easier to lay out a reactive user interface, making Auto Layout live up to its original promise of being easy to use. This capability is especially important with the radically different iOS 7 user interface.

you can allow users to capture video at 60fps (30fps is the smartphone standard). This frame rate is particularly useful for slow-motion playback. You can shoot video at 60fps and then play back at 24 or 30fps to achieve smooth slow-motion video. Also supported in iOS 7 is the ability to control the zoom level of the camera in recordings and video preview. If you’re interested in writing business apps, you’ll be glad to know that Apple has introduced the ability to scan and recognize barcodes with the iPhone camera. Previously, you could use a third-party toolkit to read barcodes from your apps, but now it’s baked right into iOS.

Many More Innovations The new features I mentioned here are just a few of the many new innovations in iOS 7. The new OS offers vast improvements in multitasking (the ability of an app to run in the background), Maps, accessories, and much more. I’m looking forward to hearing the creative ways in which you implement these great new features in your apps. As you begin your journey into app development, I invite you to check out my weekly iPhone Life blog post ( blogs/Kevin-McNeish), where I dive into the details of building iOS apps. I’ll see you there! Ѷ Kevin McNeish is an award-winning app developer, software architect and well-known software conference speaker in the U.S. and abroad. He is the author of the new iOS App Development for Non-Programmers book series ( and the winner of the 2012 Publishing Innovation Award. He has spent much of his career making difficult concepts easy to understand. Follow Kevin on Twitter @kjmcneish.

Cameras, Photos, and Video This new version of iOS 7 includes some great features for capturing photos and videos. People love using their cameras, so if you can find a good use for including video or image capture in your app—or even adding augmented reality, as is found in apps such as Yelp (free, and AR Invaders ($1.99, app2. me/3579)— you can greatly increase your user’s interest as well as your App Store rating. For example, from within your app,

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Kevin Gilmore Age: 48 Location: Monterey, California One-Line Bio: Athletics Media Relations Coordinator at Cal State Monterey Bay, (not especially gifted) tennis player and golfer, dog foster parent, and science geek.



Enthuse: Enthuse is a brand new app that allows fans to earn points that can "buy" tangible rewards simply for following their favorite sports teams. My school, Cal State Monterey Bay, was one of the first college sports programs to partner with Enthuse. At Bat: At Bat is a great way to follow my Buccos (yes, I'm really a Pirates fan) from across the country. I get live score updates and in-game video updates, plus I can listen live while I'm out for a run.

Hootsuite: I get a lot of use out of HootSuite. It's such a great way to manage multiple social media accounts on the fly. We do a lot of tweeting during games (updating scores and such) and HootSuite makes it easy to tweet live from several games simultaneously.

Shazam: Perhaps the greatest tool ever created for winning bar bets! I was an early iPhone adopter, and the concept of a music-tagging tool like Shazam was magic to most of my friends.

&ANDANGO As a moviegoer, it's great to be able to check what's playing in all my local theaters from one app. It usually provides good plot synopses and cast and crew info, which I find helpful.


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!STRONOMY&OLDER Sky Safari: Even though my career is built around sports, I am a self-admitted science geek and Sky Safari is by far my favorite science app. Not only is it great at identifying what you're seeing as you look, but it also has a great search function.

TiVo: I love TiVo—it lets me watch more TV and spend less time doing it. Besides, who among us hasn't committed the mortal sin of forgetting to program their DVR?



hat would you do if your iPhone crashed every time you tried to enter text? That was the dilemma an iPhone 4 user faced recently. So she posted a question in Apple’s iPhone forum. The subject of her post read: “iPhone 4 crashes when trying to type.”


She posted it at 11:27 a.m. Four minutes later, a forum member with the username timothy.a.clifton posted a reply. He suggested three things to try—restarting her iPhone, resetting all the settings, and doing a backup and restore—and provided directions for each step. At 12:59 p.m. the user posted: “Finally—the total restore from iTunes did the job... Thanks.” That’s the way life should be: you have a question, and some kind timothy.a.clifton is there on the spot, ready to help you. And that’s the way life works in Apple’s support forums. Thankfully, the abundance of online help doesn’t stop there, but you have to know where to look. Here are some excellent online resources to visit whenever your iDevice decides to become uncooperative.

( You’ll inevitably have a lot of questions related to using your new iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, and a good first stop for getting answers is Apple’s website. Go to, and in the menu bar at the top you’ll see “Support” all the way at the right. Click on it, and you’ll then see a page that lets you choose which de-

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vice you need help with. There’s also a section related to iTunes. Click on your device, and you’ll see a page with a categorized trove of documents that walks you through the solutions to most of your questions or concerns: how to update your device, how to back up, how to turn off and on and reset, how to use apps, how to download past purchases, and hundreds more.

To ask a question, simply type it into the prominent box at the top of the overview page and click “Submit my question to the community.â€? Note, though, that if you haven’t yet logged in, you’ll ďŹ rst be asked to do so. Apple makes it really easy by letting you log in using your Apple ID and password. You’ll also need to select a username that will be associated with the questions you ask.

The categories of documents include iPhone Essentials, iPad Essentials, Apps, Features, Mail, Contacts, Calendars, iCloud, iTunes, Wi-Fi, Accessories, and more. It’s all well organized and easy to browse. In addition to these categories of help documents, the support pages include PDF ďŹ les of the manuals for all the devices.

You can also click the link at right that says, “Start a discussion.� In each case, you’ll be presented with a checklist so that you can specify which categorized discussion your question will appear in. You can also browse the discussions and search. The page also contains a link on the right, “Learn more about asking questions,� that walks you through the steps of asking a question.


Apple’s communities have some very useful features, such as the ability to bookmark your questions so that it’s easy to see if they’ve been answered when you return. Also, by default, the system sends you an email notiďŹ cation whenever a response is posted.

OTHER ONLINE FORUMS MacRumors ( has 19 iDevice-related forums, most of which are very active. Be sure to check out the forum titled “iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting.� Some questions receive dozens of replies, and most appear to be answered. ( As helpful as these documents are, many people would simply prefer to ask a quick question. In my opinion, the best place to do that is Apple’s support communities. The number of Apple enthusiasts prowling the forums at all times, eager to answer your questions, is amazing. These are not Apple employees, for the most part; rather, they’re regular people like timothy.a.clifton who like to help. It’s not unusual to have one’s question answered within minutes. To get to Apple’s support communities, you again go to apple. com, click on Support in the top menu bar, select iPhone or iPad, and then click on the Communities link. Clicking on the Using iPhone or Using iPad link brings up an overview page of categorized discussions: Apps, AirPlay, Camera, Getting Started, Mail, Syncing, Wi-Fi, and more. Note that there’s also a support community for iTunes.

“The number of Apple enthusiasts prowling the forums is amazing. It’s not unusual to get your question answered within minutes.� 86

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EverythingiCafe ( has 25 forums related to Apple gadgets, and over 330,000 members. This is likely the largest iPhoneand iPad-related community on the Web. They even have forums for the Apple TV and the rumored iWatch. I0HONE&ORUMSNET ( includes speciďŹ c forums for each iPhone carrier, so that you can get help if your issue is carrier-related. There are also forums speciďŹ c to each generation of iPhone.


(, search for speciďŹ c iDevice) Yahoo’s Apple-iPhone group is also a friendly and helpful discussion group. Although it’s named iPhone, in my experience, members are open to questions about other iOS devices.

As with all Yahoo Groups, you can interact with it on the Web or via email. Simply being able to fire off a question via email is a real convenience. However, if you’ve chosen the setting to receive emails, then you’ll also be receiving an email each time someone else asks or answers a question, which could be up to 10 times a day. You can also set it so you receive all the messages just once a day in a digest, or you can set it to view the discussion only via the Web. The group is moderated, so you won’t get any spam or junk mail. If you are not already a member, you’ll have to sign up with Yahoo before you can interact with this group online or via e-mail. However, you can read the archives online without having a Yahoo ID. There’s also an iPad Yahoo Group that is quite active, with anywhere from 20–100 messages a day. This, too, is a friendly, knowledgeable, and helpful community. The iPod touch group is relatively inactive, so you may get more of a response to your iPod touch questions in the Apple-iPhone group.

ABOUT.COM ( may be an especially good site if you’re just getting started. It has many helpful support documents and how-to guides for iOS devices. Examples include “iPad Troubleshooting:

What to Do When Things Go Wrong,” “Beginner's Guides to iPod, iPhone, and iPad,” and “The First 9 Things You Should Do When You Get a New iPhone.”

Of course, the challenge with any such repository of help guides is keeping them up to date. Some of the materials are a bit dated, but many are continually updated so that they take into account the latest devices and version of iOS. That gives you a lot of options for getting the help you need using your iPhone or iPad. Of course, the best first step is usually simply doing a quick Google search. I find that if it’s a common problem, I almost always get the answer among the first few search results that come up. Ѷ Jim Karpen, Ph.D, is on faculty at Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield, IA. He has been writing about the revolutionary consequences of computer technology since 1994. His Ph.D dissertation anticipated the Internet revolution. His site,, contains selected regular columns written for The Iowa Source.

Best Speakers

The Best of CTIA

2013 Show Awards

ZAGG Origin 2-in-1 Bluetooth Speaker System ($249.99,

Best Portable Speakers

Scosche boomBOTTLE Weatherproof Wireless Portable Speaker ($149.95,


ith roughly 40 thousand attendees, the annual CTIA conference is the largest wireless mobile conference in the United States. This year’s show took place in Las Vegas, Nevada, and iPhone Life had the great pleasure of sponsoring CTIA’s very first iZone—an 18,000-squarefoot area dedicated solely to iOS accessories. We were also in charge of running the speaker programming on the iZone Innovation Stage, which was very well attended and featured a surprise announcement from OtterBox (they revealed their purchase of popular case manufacturer LifeProof).

Best Battery Case

We also got to scour the show floor for the coolest gadgets and accessories, and wow, did we find some incredible stuff! Here is our full list of award winners from the show. Enjoy! mophie juice pack plus® for iPhone 5 ($119.95,


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Best Minimalist Case

Moshi iGlaze armour for iPhone 5 ($39.95,

Best Folio Case

ZAGGkeys MINI 7 ($89.99,

Most Innovative iPad Case

Thunderstorm Handheld Home Theater with Lightning ($199.99,

Best iPad Case

LifeProof frē for iPad mini ($99.99,

Best Battery Pack

Extreme 5,200 Duo and Extreme 10,000 Duo ($69.99 and $99.99,

Best Screen Protector

ScreenGuardz Pure Glass Screen Protectors (Starting at $39.95,

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Best Kids’ Accessory

HELO TC Assault ($59.99,

Best Bluetooth Accessory


Best Car Accessory

RAM Universal X-Grip™ ($23.83,


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Best Gaming Gear


The Illustrious “They Made What Now?!” Award

Rokform v3 Golf Shooter ($129,

Best New Product

LifeProof frē iPhone 5 Case ($79.99,

Other Awards Most Versatile Charging Accessory: Moshi (, for its Ion Bank 5K and 10K Integrated Wire Chargers. Best iPad Travel Bag: Incase (, for its City Collection Pack.

hanced plastic cases that are degradable, compostable, and recyclable. "EST (EALTH  &ITNESS !CCESSORY iShieldz (, for its Anti-Microbial Screen Protectors.

Most Innovative Case: Rokform (, for its family of versatile case and mount platforms.

Best Home Automation: Belkin (, for its WeMo product line, including the new consumer-product light switch.

-OST%CO &RIENDLY#ASE Toast (, for its certified regrowth wood cases.

Most Random Celebrity Appearance: MiiKey (, for its Michael Jackson impersonator.

Most Protective Case: OtterBox (, for its Defender Series.

Most Generous Company: Mrked (, for its collection of accessories whose sales help provide an education for girls in Asian and African countries.

-OST%CO &RIENDLY!CCESSORY Trident (, for its line of bio-en-

Best of iZone

Best Product Design: Tribeca (, for its headphone and case collections. Most Life-Changing Product: The American Red Cross (, for its suite of five apps to help people protect themselves and their loved ones through knowledge and prevention. Best Booth: iShieldz (, for its booth featuring a paintball gun you can shoot at an iPad. Hidden Treasure Award: Tribeca (, for its stylish collection of cases, USB drives, bags, and headphones.

Best All-Around Collection

ZAGG (, for its overall product line. Honorable Mention LifeProof (, for its overall product line. Scosche (, for its overall product line. Honorable Mention Moshi (, for its overall product line.

Honorable Mention Griffin Technology (, for its overall product line.

Honorable Mention Incase (, for its overall product line.

iPhone L if e S e pte m be r-O c tobe r 2 0 1 3


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i P h o n e L i f e S eptember-October 2013

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i P h o n e L i f e S eptember-October 2013

iPhone Lif e S e pte m be r-O c tobe r 2 0 1 3


iView Hal, along with his wife Rita, founded iPhone Life’s original publishing company, Thaddeus Computing, in 1985. You can reach him at

Evernote Meets GTD I

n last issue’s column (, I summarized David Allen’s Getting Things Done (GTD) productivity system and then suggested several app solutions, including Evernote (free, Since then, I’ve been using Evernote on a PC, iPad, iPhone, and on a friend’s Mac—I’m completely sold! In this column, I’ll summarize how I use Evernote with GTD. For more basics on how Evernote works, be sure to see my article on page 58.

Storing My Stuff Evernote acts as a cloud depository for all the digital “stuff” I want to save and refer to, from scanned papers and photos to social media content and highlights from e-books. Since it’s all stored in the cloud, I can access my Evernote items—called “notes”—from my iPhone, iPad, laptop, or desktop anytime I need them.

Organizing My Stuff I keep my Evernote items organized by classifying them as actionable items, which become notes in my Action Items notebook, or reference items, which become notes in my Reference notebook. For example, I have action notes associated with grocery shopping and cleaning out the garage, and I have reference notes for investment strategies and background material for articles. Tags add another layer of organization in Evernote, and users get to create their own tag names. In my system, each of my notes has one or more tags. Below, I describe the tags I created to be consistent with the GTD system.

Using GTD Tags to Organize To-Do Lists A prime GTD objective is to define unprocessed items, such as emails or ideas. Once I decide which notes go into my Action Items notebook and Reference notebook, I tag items for easy reference. For example, in my Reference notebook you’ll find notes with category tags like “finances” and “cars” (I’m in the market),


i P h o n e L i f e S eptember-October 2013

or tags involving people, like “Rita” or “Eduardo.” In my Action Items notebook, I always tag notes with a timeline, like “1-today,” “2-thisweek,” “3-soon,” “4-later,” “5-someday,” and “6-waiting.” Making numbers part of the name is arbitrary, but it’s useful for fast tagging, and it fits the way Evernote displays tags. Context tags, such as 9phone, 9errands, and 9home, also prove helpful. So, for example, when I run errands, on my iPhone I look at 9errands-tagged notes, and then I don’t forget anything. I start each day by looking at “2-thisweek” tags and changing them to “1-today” as needed. Then in Evernote, I click the “1-today” tag to review the day’s to-do list. Each week, I review and adjust “3-soon” and “4-later” notes. “6-waiting,” which I usually review several times a week, is for tasks assigned to others or for which I’m waiting for a response. The “5-someday” notes, reviewed monthly, are things I would really like to get to eventually.

Biggest Gains Thanks to this system, my mind is not cluttered with stuff I need to remember. If I think of something on the go, I just pull out my iPhone, open Evernote, and create a short text, photo, or audio note. This tagging-and-searching combination of GTD and Evernote lets me prioritize my daily activities and find what I need quickly.

Getting Started Fast Many of these ideas for integrating GTD with Evernote came from two sources I strongly recommend. One is The Secret Weapon (, which features a dozen short video tutorials that will get you going fast, and the other is Daniel Gold's e-book Evernote: The Unofficial Guide to Capturing Everything and Getting Things Done ($5, I hope these resources help and that you find using GTD and Evernote as practical and satisfying as I have. Ѷ

Iphone life magazine 2013 09 10  
Iphone life magazine 2013 09 10