These are a few of my favourite things – iPhone apps

I’ve had an iPhone for a couple of months now. Here are some of the apps that I like and use regularly:

  • Skype (free) – I haven’t been successful in setting up Skype on my laptop that’s running Ubuntu. Apparently I’m not the only one. My living in the future moment is when I’m talking to someone using Skype on my phone. I’m not a phone talker, so my plan doesn’t have many minutes. This is useful for when I’m feeling chatty.
  • Bump (free) – handy for trading contact information. If the other person has Bump installed you can touch your phones together to save the other person’s contact info.
  • Urban Spoon (free) – useful for finding restaurant by neighbourhood, type of food, or price. By shaking your phone it turns the search into a random slot machine.
  • WhatTheFont (free) – identifies what the font used in a picture or a web graphic. Perfect for typophiles and font geeks.
  • NeoReader (free) – universal 2D symbology barcode reader that I learned about from an ad in Dwell magazine. I don’t really need to access consumer product websites faster, but I have a special place in my heart for barcodes. I’m also mulling over possibilities of using them in our library to connect various physical locations in the stacks to our related content on our website.

I didn’t think I’d play games on my phone. I’m not into computer or console games, but I love board games.

I quickly developed an obsession with PopCap Games’ Plants vs Zombies ($2.99), a cute and addictive tower defence game. They’ve also made Bejeweled 2 ($2.99) and Peggle ($2.99). Bejeweled is a great way to waste one minute increments of time at while waiting for the bus, though I wish the boosts that are available on the computer game were available on the iPhone. In Peggle you try and hit pegs with a ball. It feels a little bit like pachinko. It’s a bit too random and I’m not a fan.

I enjoy puzzle games and got great recommendations from the Cataloguer Guy (CG) I work with:

  • Angry Birds ($.99) – a puzzle game where you launch birds to squash pigs. Sounds weird, but it’s fun, addictive, and gets tricky quickly.
  • Puzzle Quest ($4.99)-A   a hokey medieval quest game, where you basically play Bejeweled against Ogres, Zombies and Giant Rats. It wasn’t worth $5, but I’ll continue to play it.
  • Crayon Physics ($4.99) -A   by adding bits to the drawings you move a ball from one place to another. I like the simple interface and how it uses the touch screen. It’s challenging and I’ve been stuck at the same level for a few days.
  • Geocaching (free) – Not a CG recommendation. I’m using the free version, but there’s one that’s $10. So far on the 3 geocaching adventures I’ve gone on, I’ve found no caches, but ended up going to some interesting places I wouldn’t have otherwise gone to. I’m not sure how accurate the GPS on the iPhone is, but I’m quite sure I’m crap at finding caches.

I’ve installed apps for various social software sites like Facebook and Twitter (Twitterific – free). I’m still undecided about location aware social software sites like Foursquare and Gowalla, but I occasionally check in on both. I like the design and interface of Gowalla better, but I like the useful tips that people write about specific places on Foursquare. I hate it when people blast all their checkins on Facebook and Twitter.

What iPhone apps do you use? Which other ones should I check out?

One thought on “These are a few of my favourite things – iPhone apps”

  1. I enjoy LibraryThing’s “Local Books” app. Of course, it depends if LibraryThing Local contains enough locations and events for your current location to make it worthwhile.

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