Self-made Google Glass.

Self-made Google Glass.

Night Mode

I spend a lot of my reading in bed at night. There’s just not that
much time for me during the day to catch up. And when I do it’s dark
(obviously) and that’s when an app’s night mode comes in handy. Night
mode always shines when it comes to spend longer times in an app.

These are the apps I frequently use and love for their night mode:

Feedly - My current #1 RSS reader
Twitterrific 5 - That’s what I use for Twitter right now.
Instapaper - Where longer articles go to
The Magazine - An amazingly innovative magazine with all kinds if
different articles
Jasmine - The best YouTube client. Fluid and elegant.
Kindle - My ereader app of choice

Among those Twitterrific 5 and Instapaper offer an automatic switch
which I really really love. I wish all apps would offer to switch
automatically. I admire and appreciate the technical approach
Instapaper uses but I’m also satisfied with the apparently (at least
that’s what I think how it works) timely switch Twitterrific uses.

Day in the life of my iPhone

5:50am - Alarm clock, time to get up. Update sleep status on Path.
6:05am - Start the day with a run, tracked by the Nike+ app, accompanied by either Spotify or the Podcast app
7:20am - Sync run to Path, Twitter and Facebook
7:25am - Save weight in Weightbot
7:45am - Breakfast - Flipboard, Feedly, Twitterrific 5 and Safari for news
8:15am - Geoalert at child care
8:15am - Maps app and Podcast or Spotify
8:50am - Checking in at Location via Path and Spotify
9:00am - Make myself a tea. Let Siri set the timer for 8 minutes
10:00am - Check notes on Simplenote
11:30am - Check and organize Todos on Gtasks
1:00pm - Check news on cir.ca, Twitterrific 5, Feedly and Safari
4:40pm - Receive nice image updates from my family on Path
6:30pm - Tell Siri to navigate me home
10:30pm - Sync my Nike Fuelband, status gets updated both on the app and on Path
10:31pm - Tell Path that I’m sleeping now

My main computer is my iPhone 4S. That’s just a small glimpse of what I’m using that thing for everyday.

A Siri enabled Nike+ Fuelband

Since June 2012 I’m a proud owner of a Nike+ Fuelband. I wear it everyday, almost 24/7. I only look at my actual Fuelpoints and occasionally use it as a watch and have removed the Calories and Steps from my view. My daily goal is: Keep that streak alive and to reach my Fuelpoints goal every day.

It is known that Tim Cook also wears one and the idea came up that with Bluetooth v4.0 maybe a Fuelband that’s constantly connected to my iPhone isn’t that much of a dream anymore. Wearable computing is on everyone’s agenda (Pebble Smart Watch, anyone?) and Apple has a history of partnering successfully with Nike, in fact creating the very first Nike+ iPod experience.

With an ever-connected Nike+ Fuelband an integration with Siri could be possible:

  • Holding the Fuelband’s button for a second enables Siri (right now that triggers the Sync but with a constant connection that wouldn’t be necessary anymore).
  • Activate normal Siri commands like “Remind me to bring out the trash when I arrive home”. The Fuelband is more than capable to display something like “OK” with its LEDs or even repeat the command. Of course Siri would need a remarkable overhaul in terms of speed and understanding (it usually doesn’t understand my commands correctly on the first attempt, especially when showing Siri to other people). 
  • A Nike+ integration would definitely involve some kind of life/health improvement thing, such as special voice commands like “I had a salad and a diet coke for lunch” in order to integrate with an extension of the Nike+ website or apps like Lose it would make sense.
  • Another classic: “Start my workout”, “I’m off for a 10km run”, etc. which triggers the Nike+ Running App and starts a run.

Let’s see how big Tim’s love for the Fuelband is. I guess there’s much more potential to this than I can envision today.

Suggestions for the @circa news app

Some thoughts and some feedback on the wonderful and innovative Cir.ca news app, maybe some thoughts from this post make it to future versions of the app:

Search functionality

I miss the possibility to enter a word and find related articles, e.g. “iPhone” and get all articles that are about the iPhone.

"Mark all stories as read"

After using this app for over a month now on a daily basis I am following quite a lot of stories. There might be updates I won’t read at this particular time and I sometimes wished for a “mark all as read” button.

Group by newest first

It’s nice that I can jump to a particular article from a push message, however when I simply open the app and know that I have 4 unread stories I have to scroll through all my subscriptions to find the ones I subsribed to that are new. Having all unread updated stories at the very top would be a nice addition.

Other than that: I’d love to beta test future versions of the app, feel free to contact me at steffennork - at - gmail.com