Friday, January 27, 2012

10 cool cell phone tricks

10 cool cell phone tricks

Has your cell phone done anything for you recently?  Mine just updated my blog. Then it told me my friend Mike was couple streets over. Next it showed me my RSS feeds from google. After that I was listening to a song on the radio and wasn’t to sure what it was and my cell phone told me. Then I was stuck in a boring meeting and my new best friend (my cell phone) got me out of it/
No, no, I didn’t go into the future and come back with the iPhone 29; all these features can be done with everyday mobile phones. You just got to know where to look and how to use it. With the right software and services, your phone can do all sorts of little tricks and services that could make your life a lot more easy.

Build a blog
Do you blog like most of people today? Need to update your blog and have something that just came to you that you want to write down? What's interesting about it is that you can actually create a new blog from your phone, just by sending a text or photo SMS to go@blogger.com.
In short order, you'll receive a reply listing your new blog's URL and a "claim code" to enter atgo.blogger.com. From there you have the option of routing mobile posts to the new blog or an existing one. Choose a template (if necessary) and you're done. You'll see your initial SMS; any additional posts sent to that same e-mail address will instantly appear on your blog. Pretty nifty way to instant-blog your vacation, night on the town or random thoughts.

Share photos and videos
Blogger is all well and good for posting text and the occasional snapshot, but it's not exactly a multimedia powerhouse. If you want to insta-share photos or even videos of, say, Britney Spears' latest wardrobe malfunction or your boss dancing on a table, look to services like JuiceCaster and Pickle. After setting up an account (both sites are free), you simply shoot your snaps and clips to a special e-mail address. This creates personalized content channels you can view/share/edit online or add to other sites (like Facebook, Blogger and Twitter). I have to give Pickle the nod in the ease-of-use department, but I like JuiceCaster's embeddable MediaBox. Guess you'll have to try them both.
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Find nearby friends
Want to hook up with a bunch of friends? Instead of calling them all individually, try Dodgeball. This recently acquired Google service lets you broadcast your whereabouts to your circle, send messages to multiple friends, find the address/cross streets of a venue and even stalk "crush on" someone you've checked out online. (The Dodgeball site includes a social-networking component, with profiles, photos, and all that.) It's an interesting service, especially if you live in a big city and enjoy the nightlife. Just make sure your phone's service plan includes unlimited texting, otherwise you could rack up some substantial SMS charges in a hurry.

Leave yourself a message
The age-old trick of leaving yourself a voice-mail reminder gets a Web 2.0 twist with services like BrainCast and Jott, which work like this: Dial a special number, then leave yourself a message. The service then forwards the recording to you via e-mail, which not only makes for faster, easier retrieval of your messages, but also keeps your regular voice-mail box from getting overly cluttered.
Better still, BrainCast and Jott let you store, manage and even share these messages. Jott, however, has the edge with its glitzier web interface and message-transcription feature: Your recordings are automatically turned into text. (Humans perform this function, but Jott promises strict security and confidentiality.) Whichever service you go with, you'll quickly come to find it indispensable.

Schedule an interruption
Excise yourself from a bad date or boring meeting with Popularity Dialer, which calls you at a scheduled time and plays one of several prerecorded messages. These "half conversations" (which include calls from "the boss" and a "cousin in need") save you from having to fake your end of the conversation, which always looks, well, fake. You can preview the recordings on the Popularity Dialer so you know what to expect.

Who sings this song?
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, for my next magical illusion, I will use this ordinary cell phone to identify the song now playing on this ordinary radio. Watch as I wave my magic wand and Shazaam!  Ok so its not really magic but I had you going there.  Shazaam is a nice app that allows users to found out who sings and the name of the songs they are listening to.
Nothing up my sleeve, mind you.
Abracadabra! My phone has revealed the mystery song. Thank you, you're marvelous.

Find missing children
Statistics show that the first three hours after a child is abducted are the most critical in recovery efforts. The Wireless Foundation, in conjunction with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and virtually all wireless carriers, offers AMBER Alerts via SMS.
Simply enter your phone number and up to five ZIP codes (so the service knows which alerts to send your way). When an AMBER Alert gets issued for your area, you'll immediately receive a text message including the child's description, where he/she was last seen, and any pertinent vehicle data. The participating carriers deliver these messages free of charge, so there's absolutely no cost to you. Do your part and sign up now.
Monitor Your Heart Rate
I was sure that this app was completely bogus when I first saw it, but after a quick trial run, it seems pretty convincing. The Heart Fitness app claims that it can effectively monitor your heart rate using only your iPhone. How in the world is that possible?

Heart Fitness
To accomplish this feat, the app takes advantage of both the camera and the bright LED on the back of your iPhone 4. First, you cover the light and the camera with your index finger. The light then illuminates your finger so that the camera reads that reddish color that results when you stick a flashlight up to your finger.
Here’s where the magic happens. As blood is pumped into your finger, the hue pulses. The camera reads this pulse and uses it to measure your heart rate! Pure voodoo right? Perhaps not. I tested the app on myself a few times and consistently came up with a measurement around 70BPM, which I confirmed by taking my own pulse manually. Then I got up and ran around for a while and used the app again, over 100BPM this time. As crazy as it sounds, it seems to work!
Now, many commenters note that they can get readings from every day items such as ketchup bottles, but this doesn’t prove anything. If you consider that the app reads pulses in color, pointing your camera at something red combined with camera-shake would produce a similar result. This proves that you can trick the app, but not that it doesn’t do what it claims.

Turn MP3s into ringtones
Paying for ringtones is like paying for sex: It should be done only as a last resort. If you own a phone that plays MP3s and supports custom ringtones (as most models do these days), it's a fairly simple matter to turn any MP3 into your very own 'tone. There are several services you can use out there but I use MiniTones and it is free as well. 

Scan Documents
You know that your iPhone has a camera on it, so it’s no surprise that it can take a photo of a document right? The problem with this though is that a handheld camera is a far cry from a flatbed scanner. Holding your phone perfectly level isn’t easy, even if you can pull it off, it’s still a hassle.
Enter Genius Scan. With this app you can quickly snap a shot of any document without really thinking about how properly aligned it is on your screen.
Genius Scan will automatically detect the edges of the document and allow you to quickly skew the perspective so that you get a perfect shot every time.

Genius Scan
You can save your documents as a PDF or JPG and even share them over Wifi for quick access from any computer.

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At January 27, 2012 at 11:20 AM , Blogger Check Care Blog said...



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