Friday, May 27, 2011

AAQR: InterWrite Keyboard (free, input method)

After trying InterWrite Keyboard a few times, I honestly don't see what's special about this keyboard. It has a "light" (look more iPhone-ish), and it supports multiple Latin/Slavic languages, and it has a TINY size. It has all the special  characters. However, I don't see stuff like word prediction, auto-correct, and other fancy stuff with this keyboard.

I guess if you need to switch languages a LOT, this may be of some use. Otherwise, sorry, there are much better keyboards out there.

Rating: Skip it

http://www.appbrain.com/app/interwrite-keyboard/org.sunnysoft.iwkeyboard
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AAQR: Red Wall, the Reddit Wallpaper App for Android

Image representing Reddit as depicted in Crunc...Image via CrunchBaseIf you use Reddit.com, you know the redditors (i.e. the users) are pretty fanatical about the crowd-sourced web clipping service. Variety of content are available on Reddit, and one of them is Wallpapers. Here's an app that is crowd-sourced by redditors and voted on so you'll always find something interesting. And you don't even need a reddit account!

Rating: Get it!

http://www.appbrain.com/app/redwall/com.kudzu.android.redwall
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Thursday, May 26, 2011

AAQR: TextWarrior (text editor for Android, free)

Text Warrior seem to be very good text editor with multiple encoding support, syntax highlight, and more.

As it's free, try it, esp. if you do a lot of text editing on Android.

http://www.appbrain.com/app/textwarrior/com.myopicmobile.textwarrior.android
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AAQR: Walkabout

Walkabout is one of those puzzles where you are supposed to single-path (without cross-over your own path) while collecting "stars". Presented in a very kiddie fashion (think MySims, young kids version), this game is clearly aimed at a very young audience.

There really isn't much to this game other than 72 levels to try (in the full version).

Rating: Try it, but I'd be bored very quickly

Free: http://www.appbrain.com/app/walkabout-lite/com.base2.walkaboutdemo

Paid: http://www.appbrain.com/app/walkabout/com.base2.walkaboutb
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AAQR: TuxKeyboard (free, input method)

TuxKeyboard is the same keyboard as Gingerbread default, with one important addition: it adds swipe up / down / left / right as "arrow keys". As most soft keyboards do not have arrow keys are you reduced to tapping repeatedly trying to get at a particular location.

This is a great idea in theory. In practice things are a little rougher, as if you don't swipe "just right" you end up touching one of the regular keys. There also don't seem to be any word completion help. Still, if you need a keyboard with arrow key cursor support, this may be something to try.

Rating: Try it

http://www.appbrain.com/app/tuxkeyboard/org.tuxkeyboard
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ANNOUNCEMENT: Kasey's Cranky Reviews

This message will not be repeated. :-)

Announcing start of "Kasey's Cranky Reviews", a nerd's look at books, movies, novels, and more.

Some recent reviews includes (yes, I know some of these are old):

Movies:

Desperado (starring Antonio Banderas and Selma Hayak)
We Were Soldiers (starring Mel Gibson)
Sky Fighters [It's like French version of Top Gun]


Non-fiction:

Shooter, autobiography by Jack Coughlin, top US sniper in the Iraq war
Freakonomics, a rogue economist looks a hidden side of everything
Foreign Babes in Bejing by Rachel DeWoskin


Fiction:

A Deeper Blue, Paladin of the Shadows #5 by John Ringo
Needs of the Many, a Star Trek Online tie-in novel
One Shot, a Jack Reacher novel by Lee Child

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

AAQR: Love Critters Lite (LWP, free)

Love Critters have 2 birds in a sakura tree singing "hearts" to each other. May be of some use before Valentine's day... or if you're in love, but otherwise, meh. A paid version exists that adds some new backgrounds and creatures, but still otherwise boring.

Rating: Try it

http://www.appbrain.com/app/love-critters-lite/com.chilisapps.android.loveCrittersLite
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AAQR: Season Clock / Spring LWP (free)

Season Clock / Spring is part 1 of the full 4 season series of LWPs. This one is full of pink and pastel flowers, and a clock that runs in the background.

A bit too girl-ish for me, but take a look at decide for yourself.

Rating: Try it

http://www.appbrain.com/app/season-clock-%E2%99%A5-spring/com.aoi.livewallpaper.pcspring
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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

AAQR: Smart Keyboard (free / paid, input method)

Smart Keyboard is a multi-lang keyboard that has different language dictionaries to download. It also has abbreviation expansion and other support. Lookswise, it looks VERY plain. All the functions are hidden.

I must say as I don't type in multiple languages I can't evaluate this properly. If you use multiple languages this should be right up your alley. The free one nags a bit, but otherwise is not crippled in any way.

http://www.appbrain.com/app/smart-keyboard-trial/net.cdeguet.smartkeyboardtrial
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AAQR: Rays of Light LWP (free)

Maxelus makes some very good LWPs and this is no exception. Rays of Light is very smooth, simple, yet produce entertaining patterns. This one has rays of colors vertically (but not perfectly vertical either) move and mix a little. It's like a cross between aurora and columns of light.

Rating: Try it!

http://www.appbrain.com/app/rays-of-light/com.maxelus.raysoflightlivewallpaper

AAQR: Snow Storm LWP (free)

CHARLOTTE, NC - JANUARY 10: Shannon Cofield wa...Image by Getty Images via @daylifeSnow Storm is a decent simulation of snow storm with snow blowing by your screen in unfocused blobs of gray and white. I was wishing for a bit more customization of amount of snow and/or wind speed and direction though.

Rating: Try it, when it's winter

http://www.appbrain.com/app/snow-storm-live-wallpaper/com.atplatforms.wallpapers
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Monday, May 23, 2011

AAQR: Chuzzle (game, paid)

While I know Popcap's game can't be that bad, I can't rate this one, because it won't run on my OG Droid. It just quits after I see the title screen.

Chuzzle is so new and exclusive to Amazon AppStore it's not even listed on Appbrain yet.

NO RATING

AAQR: PSwirly (LWP, free)

PSwirly has particles (read: sprites) of various colors swirl around the screen in patterns. There are over a dozen different "particles" available, from simple shapes to Android, certain logos, and more.

Somewhat interesting, but not THAT interesting.

Rating: Try it (leaning toward "meh")

http://www.appbrain.com/app/pswirly-live-wallpaper/com.exofusion.pswirly

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Other Announcements

I think the posts have caught up... approximate 2 apps reviewed every day. 

Stay tuned. :)  If you have a particular app you want to be reviewed, put it in the comments and I'll see what I can do. 

AAQR: Gamevil's Baseball Superstars 2011 (free / paid, sports, game)

Baseball Superstars 2011 from Gamevil is one of those cartoonish sports games that hides a decent game underneath. The childish presentation aside (oversized head and all that) there really isn't that much different from this and one of the games like MLB 2011, except the teams and player names. With multiple game modes there is something for every one.

Rating: Try it

http://www.appbrain.com/app/baseball-superstars%C2%AE-2011-free/com.gamevil.baseball2011free (free version)
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AAQR: Tap n Swipe Keyboard (input method, soft keyboard, free)

Despite its claim that it is new, Tap n Swipe is not new. I've documented at least six similar keyboards in my keyboard roundup, and this one just have nothing special to be worth recommending.

Rating: skip it

http://www.appbrain.com/app/tapnswipe-%28beta%29/com.step2u.tapnswipe

Read the keyboard roundup here, where I called it "Tap-Slider"

http://hubpages.com/hub/Android-Softkeyboard-Shootout-which-input-method-should-you-use
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AAQR: Hippo Chub LWP (free)

HIPPOImage via WikipediaHippo Chub is another of those Japanese-style uber-cute anime-type LWPs that doesn't really animate much, and may be more suitable to phones that belong to female users. Basically, a hippo angel (hey, it has wings), is sitting there wishing to the moon. As I said, cute.

Rating: skip it (unless you're of the female persuasion)

http://www.appbrain.com/app/hippo-chub-live-wallpaper-free/com.tokyopop.wallpaper.hippo.free
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AAQR: Prismatic Live Wallpaper (free LWP)

Prismatic LWP is another creation of Kittehface, who had put out quite a few good LWPs before. This one is no exception. Instead of standard Kaleidoscope, the colors have changed to be more vibrant and more... "plasma" like? The result is a much of interesting look.

Rating: Get it!

http://www.appbrain.com/app/prismatic-free-live-wallpaper/fishnoodle.kaleidoscope_free
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AAQR: Shockwave Live Wallpaper

Other than a seismograph-like display of the phone's vertical movement, the rest of the screen looks kinda interesting but is purely decoration. Boring.

Rating: skip it

http://www.appbrain.com/app/shockwave-live-wallpaper/jp.android.app.lwp.ShockWave

AAQR: MyHome Launcher Lite (free, home launcher replacement)

MyHome Launcher Lite is the free version of MyHome Launcher.

MyHome Launcher wants to be lightweight, yet support themes. However, the APK itself is 2.5MB, hardly lightweight when Zeam clocks in at 372KB.

Inspection of the home shows that it has no theming other than the "dock", though it does come with multiple "themes" that emulate Android through the ages, from Cupcake up to Honeycomb. However, there is no change inside the app drawer at all.

At 2.5MB, I don't see why you'd use this over GoLauncher Ex or ADWLauncher at all. It's not light, and it's not full theme support. It is neither fish nor fowl, so to speak.

Rating: skip it, unless you feel like trying every Home under the sun.

http://www.appbrain.com/app/myhome-lite-launcher-home/mobi.ISAdevelopers.myHome.Lite.launcher

AAQR: Impossible Game (paid, action, simple)

There isn't much about the Impossible Game... There are only three controls. Jump, flag, erase flag.

You're a "square". You need to go as far as possible along the track and not have bad things happen to you... Your speed is fixed, so your only option is the jump at the right time and avoid bad things and land on good things.

Obviously when you need to do the jumps in combinations with utmost precision, this gets impossible.

To help you along, you can drop a "restart flag" which means when you die, you start at the flag, instead of all the way back at the start. You can also 'erase flag' which lets you put down a new one (probably when you made it past a particularly nasty section).

If you like this sort of "reflex" game where there is only one action, sure, give it a try. It was free for a day on Amazon Appstore, but the version now costs $1.37.  Sorry, no demo available.

Rating: Try it

http://www.appbrain.com/app/the-impossible-game/com.flukedude.impossiblegame
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