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July 2010

iApp Review – Popular Mechanics Does it Right

I’m a sucker for giving publishing a chance. I don’t know why, they fail more often than not. Just look at Wired (iTunes Link), and Men’s Health (iTunes Link).

Popular Mechanics (iTunes Link), might be the exception for many reasons.

1. They priced the app right. 1.99. It’s a beta, so I hope they see that the price is a huge deal and keep it at something reasonable, and below the dead tree edition.

2. They don’t go rich media crazy like Wired did. There’s plenty of pages of simple text for reading. Maybe a nice transition of a graphic element sliding in slightly after the page transition finishes, but every page isn’t a multimedia orgy.

3. They started slow. Both Men’s Health and Wired, dove right in with high priced, “billed as complete” as far as I know offerings. It’s nice to see Pop. Mech. admit they’re testing the waters.

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How does iThoughtsHD have this and Apple doesn’t?

I caved, and paid $10 for pages. Complete waste of money. I edit a lot of pages files. Sponsor packets,etc. All the time. I’d love to pull one up on my iPad, edit, and without having to think about plugging into iTunes, copying the files out of iTunes back to my iDisk where they live, overwriting the old one.

Pages, and most apps, come kinda close, you can access the file, pull it in locally, make edits, but then you’re stuck, the document is trapped in the iPad and iTunes.

Why not make the iPad apps (at least the Apple ones) more connected to Oh I dunno, say Apple’s own cloud services. iWork.com and mobileMe. Some of us (still) pay for mobileMe hoping it’ll mature and actually be useful. I have no idea what iWork.com is for, but it seems like it’d make perfect sense to tie the iWork iPad apps (maybe the new iLife ones too) to Apple’s own (though dropbox, et. al. would be nice too) services to extend their usefulness.

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iApp Review – Landformer

I met Owen Goss at the first 360|iDev I organized, and instantly liked him. If nothing else he takes my polar bear jokes in stride, that’s pretty big :) He’s an awesome developer, great speaker, and his latest game LandFormer (iTunes Link) is an awesome time suck! That’s a good thing :) Owen’s not new to games, but I think this latest release is his coming out game. This is the game that’s the start of truly awesome things for Owen. Ok enough gushing! LandFormer is a straightforward puzzle game, you don’t really need instructions or tutorials, pick it up, try it out and away you go. The objective is to make the ground perfectly flat; raising and lowering the terrain in patterns to accomplish your goal. You’ve got 6…

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