Geek of the Week (212)

Tuesday, 10 January 2017 11:03

Geek of the Week: YouMail

When telemarketers completely ignore the fact that your number is on the National Do Not Call Registry, this app steps in to help put an end to RoboCalls. They call it an intelligent call management app with loads of features, but the one I like the most is: when you get a call from an unrecognized or blocked number, it sends the tell-tale tones and announcement that “this number is no longer in service”. The outgoing message even has the static and crackle that you can hear when you actually reach a disconnected number.

I got the app just for this feature...but it has more. Essentially, YouMail is a replacement for your voicemail and acts as your virtual, personal assistant. It offers customized out-going messages for friends on your contact list (“hi, Dan, Jason can't take your call, but I'll make sure he gets the message”), it will convert your voice mails to texts and send them to you that way, call forwarding for important calls and more.

Free for iOS and Android devices

Tuesday, 03 January 2017 10:08

Geek of the Week: Pact

If you have trouble sticking to your New Year's resolutions, this app may help. PACT keeps track of the exercise or diet goals you set...and pays you for sticking to them (it also takes money from you if you don't).

Let's say your goal is “go to the gym 3 days a week”. If you do it, you earn $10...if you only go to the gym twice you are docked $10. GPS and the motion sensors in your phone keep you honest and report back to the app.

This is a community based app so the money you earn comes from other members having to pay out for not living up to their resolutions.

Similarly, if your goal is “to eat veggies with at least 4 meals a week”, you have to take a picture of your plate and have it verified by another member in order to get credit.

The app works with fitbits and other exercise trackers and they say it has helped their members hit 95% of their goals.

The app is free for Android and iOS.

Tuesday, 27 December 2016 10:25

Geek of the Week: New Year's Eve Streams!

If staying up until midnight to watch the ball drop and usher in the new year, doesn't have the appeal that it used to, don't worry...there's an app for that! (a web site too)

Earthcam offers free live streams that will show New Years celebrations from cities all over the world.

So if you don't want to wait around until midnight to watch the events in Times can catch the celebration in London at 7pm, or in Paris at 6pm, or Moscow at 4pm...or in Beijing at 11am!

The app is free for iPhone and Android devices, or go to the web site,

Tuesday, 20 December 2016 11:00

Geek of the Week: NORAD's Santa Tracker

Back again this year, the official Santa tracking app and web site from the North American Aerospace Defense Command. Every year, since 19___ the Air Force base in Colorado has kept a close eye on any sleighs and reindeer that make their way across the radar you can too!

The new and improved web site isn't just for Christmas has plenty of games and videos and songs to keep the kids entertained all year long. But the big draw is the tracking of the big man's trip around the globe on Christmas Eve. is the web site and you can download free apps from GooglePlay and iTunes.

(you can also follow them on Twitter, @NoradSanta)

Tuesday, 13 December 2016 13:41

Geek of the Week: Christmas Games

Blocky Xmas: This is a puzzle game that sort of reminds you of Tetris and those “one empty space” puzzles from your childhood. Your goal is simple: Build a Christmas Tree shape from the blocks provided. The game tells you where to build it...and sometimes other blocks are in the way, sometimes you have to maneuver the blocks around objects on the game board. Its a fun time waster.

Blocky Xmas is free for iOS and Android


Mister Bounce: This game is reminiscent of FlappyBird. Santa is a bouncing ball, advancing across the screen. To make him bounce, tap the screen. Aim him at presents to collect, but don't accidentally make him impale himself on a pointy Christmas tree!

Mister Bounce is free for iOS and Android

Tuesday, 06 December 2016 13:24

Geek of the Week: 1600

Now that the world has experienced the summer of augmented reality, thanks to Pokemon Go, Washington figures we're ready for more...and we are! Last week, the White House Historical Association launched a new app that shows a year at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Open the app and aim the camera at a one-dollar bill. The app then transforms that bill into a 3D White House. It plays through various scenes that happen at the capital, from the President's Marine 1 helicopter landing in the back yard, to the annual Easter egg roll, to visiting dignitaries. Its all there in an animation that, if you move the camera around the dollar, will follow and change along too.

Take a look at this video!

Its a free download in the AppStore and on GooglePlay.

Tuesday, 29 November 2016 13:34

Geek of the Week: Google PhotoScan

This app came out a couple weeks ago. Simply put, it's a way to back-up your old photographs. Not your old digital selfies...the old pictures of Grandma as a baby, or your family's 1975 Christmas card. The app is way faster than putting the photographs on a flat-bed scanner, and more permanent than storing them in a shoebox.

When you open the app, it provides a frame. Center the photograph in the frame. Then four dots appear on the screen. Aim the camera at each dot until the progress bar is complete. Once you've connected the dots, the phone is done scanning, and you have a digital, glare-free version of your old photograph.

This video helps to explain a little better

The pictures don't come out as crystal clear as they might if you made a reproduction from a negative, but they're still pretty good.

Download Google's PhotoScan for free from GooglePlay and the AppStore...and if you have Google Photos, store them, upload them to the cloud, and they'll automatically be organized.

Earlier this week, Apple Watch wearers were issued a challenge by Apple to complete a walking, running, or rolling 5k on Thanksgiving Day. If you complete the challenge, you get a medal in the Activity app.

Keep in mind, you don't HAVE to be an Apple Watch wearer to complete a 5k just won't get a picture showing up on the screen on your will, however, feel better about all the food you'll be packing away later in the evening.

Tuesday, 15 November 2016 13:13

Geek of the Week: Amazon App

Amazon has updated their app to add some pretty awesome new features!  

1) Snap n' Search Camera:  Take a picture of something and search for it on the Amazon website.  For instance, if you're at a friend's house and see a great pair of boots, snap a pic, find it on Amazon and order it right from your phone.

2) Barcode Scanner:  If you're an avid Amazon shopper, you no doubt have numerous boxes piling up on your front porch.  Which one is the box you really need to hide from the kids?  Just use the barcode scanner to tell what's inside each box, without having to open it.

Amazon's Black Friday sale is going on all month, though the best deals will be on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

If the Amazon app didn't come, pre-loaded on your phone, you can download it for free on iTunes or GooglePlay

Tuesday, 08 November 2016 13:57

Geek of the Week: Relax

With the election behind us and, depending on how you voted, the stress of the results ahead of you, here's an app that was voted the Top Mind and Body App of 2014 by doctors. Relax Stress and Anxiety Relief.

It leads you through deep breathing exercises and guided meditation. It has soothing music, pictures and animations to help you shed the stresses of the world and spend a few moments relaxing.

The Lite versions are free on both iTunes and GooglePlay

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