Saturday, September 17, 2011

There's an App for That! Thinking Big!

A colleague in Agricultural Education just got an Iphone today and knowing that I am a slight tech nerd contacted me about what apps I liked. My initial plan was to prepare an e-mail sharing some of my favorites with her, but then a quote of the week I gave my 8th graders popped into my mind - “If you are going to think anyway, think big.” Donald Trump. So, why e-mail when I can blog! I must warn you that since cell phones are banned for students in our school, most of my apps are personal based.

Yes, it’s an extensive list so use what appeals to you and ignore the rest. 

I try to find free apps, but in order to get apps without advertisements or items with full features, sometimes you need to pay a little. I had my phone for about three months when one of my friends suggested I get Tips and Tricks – iphone Secrets by Intelligenti Ltd. Using it taught me so much that I bought their second volume as well. I am teachable so if there are apps you enjoy that I missed listing, feel free to add a comment.

Functional/ Utility
  •   The Weather Channel
  • USPS Mobile – get zipcodes, find post offices near you and calculate the price of your mailing
  • Convert – A great tool to convert units of time, length, temperature and more
  • Flashlight by John Haney Software – every so often you need a flashlight handy and this one is easy to use
  •  Wi-Fi Finder by JiWirewith the high cost of data plans, finding free wi-fi for your phone certainly makes life easier and more cost effective
  • Dropbox – If you have it on your computer, it makes sense to have it on your phone.
  •  ScatterBrain – create and organize lists
  •  JotNot – Lets you scan items in as PDF files and share them
  • Shazam – Hear a song that you like but don’t know the name? Shazam can identify it for you
  • TuneWiki – Love to sing along but can’t remember the words? Tunewiki actually shows the words for you as your Itunes songs play.
  • – Tired of listening to your songs or away from home and longing for the local radio? This app has several radio stations from around the globe.
  • DerManDar – The easiest app I have found to use for panoramic photos
  • PhotoStudio – a plethora of effects you can add to your photos. You can also crop, adjust the color, rotate, and do basic photo editing.
  • Adobe Photoshop Express – basic photo editing software
  •  WeCam – loads of fun filters to take your photos with (Note: Although I love the variety, I am not thrilled about how you have to scroll through every filter to reach the one you want.)
  •  PicCollage – create and share collages of your photos
Social Networking
  • Facebook – Did I really need to suggest this one?
  • Tweetdeck – I’ve found it to be the easiest app to manage my Twitter account (@rcmclean) with
  • Foursquare – Check-ins have the potential to earn your freebies or discounts

Navigation/ Gas
  • Waze – Not only does this app give you directions, but users enter police sightings, traffic reports, hazards on the road and other real time information
  • GasBuddy – compare gas prices near you
  • Mezzoman – Trying to meet up with someone? Mezzoman allows you to enter both of your addresses and finds attractions at a halfway point.

  • Emoji emoticons – Add a little jazz to text messages with a variety of images
  • RSS FlashG – A way to organize the RSS feeds you are following and get them delivered to your phone.
  •  justWink – Allows you to create and share greeting cards.
  • Shoot it!Snail mail might seem old fashioned but this app let’s you take a photo and then send it as a postcard
General Education
  • Edmodo – If you use it, you need this!
  • – It gives you a word of the day and pronounces words for you.
  • Smithsonian Channel – Videos on Science and Nature, Culture, Air and Space, History, plus little quizzes with links to help you learn more
  •  PBS – You can get PBS shows on your phone
  • PLI Blog – PLI stands for Personal Leadership Insight. It is the work of Rhett Laubach and company.
  • The World Factbook 2011 – facts for countries around the globe

Education with an Agricultural Education Focus
  • LeafSnap – Leaf identification via photo
  • TreeBook – Identify trees by working through a virtual leaf key; get information on common trees; explore tree families
  •  Florafolio- Native plants of the Northeast; search by sun exposure, USDA zone, water needs, flower color, leaf shape, wildlife attraction, or several other criteria
  • SoilWeb – discover what the soil is like beneath your feet
  • DairyPing – enter a plant code from a milk container and see how far that is from your location

  • CardStar – organize all of the discount cards you have by entering them here (Note: Sometimes the glare makes the barcode hard to generate but the cashier can type in your number as that shows up, too)
  • RedLaser – scan a barcode and get an item’s price at nearby stores as well
  • Look Local- part of the 3/50 project, this app helps you find local stores as opposed to chains
  • Harvest to Hand – Find Farmers’ Markets, Agritourism, agriculturally based events, and CSAs
  •   Barnes and Noble
  • Ebay
  • Staples
  • Groupon
  • Living Social

  • ExecTag – easy to use app for reading QR codes
  • QRS+- allows you to generate QR codes. Also a code reader but not as easy to use as ExecTag
  • AppZilla 2 – An assortment of apps all in one place for a low price
  • AroundMe – search for banks, restaurants, gas stations, and all sorts of categories of places that are near your current location
  • SmartTraveler by the US Department of State – provides background information about countries (history, government, politics, foreign relations, people) plus information to know before you go (where US embassies are, crime, travel alerts, etc.)
  • My TSA – reminders about airline travel and estimated wait times at airline security checkpoints
  • AllSubway – subway maps for the US and major cities around the globe
  • SpotWorld – User generated lists about must see attractions in an assortment of cities
  •  SitorSquat – Believe it or not, one of my male friends hooked me up with this app. It tells you the nearest public restrooms to you and their features. It also provides cleanliness ratings.
  • NatureFind – Find parks and outdoor events near you
  • WildObs – Record your wildlife (flora and fauna) encounters via photo and share with other users or see what sightings have been in the local area.
Food Glorious Food
  • OpenTable – make restaurant reservations
  • Starbucks – need I say more?
  •  Fooducate – Scan a barcode in and see the health merits of the item you plan to purchase. This app grades your food choices. This could be used in the classroom as an educational tool, too.
  • BiteHunter – finds nearby dining deals
  • ESPN Score Center
  • ESPN Bowl Bound – for college football fans
  •  NFL’11
  • NHL GameCenter 2010- even though they say 2010, it has current information
  •  Huffington Post
  • CNN
  • NPR News
  •  Discovery News
Fun and Games
  • Words with Friends
  • Hanging with Friends
  • Angry Birds
  • Fling
  • Coin Drop

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