Daily iPad App: Watchup is your personal video news station

Sometimes reading the news just doesn’t jive with what you are doing. For those times, iPad owners can turn to Watchup, a video news aggregator that pulls content from the top news channels.

Watchup lets you create your own custom newscasts that you can watch when you have some free time at the breakfast table or during your evening commute. You can pick the length of the newscast and choose the duration that fits into your schedule. The app also lets you pick the channels that you want to add to your newscast and includes a handful of the best news sources in the business including CNN, WSJ, TED, TechCrunch and more. Watchup compiles the newscast for you at the same time each day, so your news will be ready and waiting for you when you need it.

Daily iPhone app: Discover fun facts about your significant other using Tokii

Couples looking for a way to grow closer in the midst of a busy schedule should take a look at Tokii. Tokii is a lifestyle app that lets you communicate privately with your significant other via your iPhone.

One part of the app focuses on your emotions so you can let your loved one know how you are feeling through the day. The other part of the app is where the fun begins. It features over 300 discovery games that are designed to help you understand your spouse even better than you already do. The question / answer style games will get you talking about sex, money and everything in between. It’s a great way to do some relationship-building in your spare time.

Newer Technology’s NuGuard KX case: MIL-STD drop protection for iPhone 5

While I was at Macworld/iWorld 2013 last month, I had the pleasure of meeting with the folks from Newer Technology at the OWC booth. One item that they were showing off at the booth was NewerTech’s NuGuard KX for iPhone 5 (US$35.00), a case that manages to provide MIL-STD-810G drop protection while not adding a lot of bulk. Let’s take a look.


Browse through this interactive map of Apple’s suppliers worldwide

Apple releases a list of all of its hardware supplier partners about once a year, as part of its Supplier Responsibility program. But the most recent list of suppliers included not only company names, but also addresses for each, and so a site called ChinaFile took all of those addresses and put them into an interactive Google map. With a few clicks and drags, you can now visually browse and see just where Apple is getting all of its various iPhone, iPad, iPod, and Mac parts from.

As you can see above, the distribution is one of the most interesting views. Obviously, the majority of Apple’s suppliers are still based over in Asia, and when you zoom in, you can see that big number is split between Japan, China, Hong Kong, and South Korea. But Apple also gets parts from the US and Europe, and even places as far away as Brazil.

Linden Lab releases Versu, an interactive fiction system for iPad

Linden Lab is best known for putting together the old social MMO Second Life, but more recently the company has been getting involved in tablet development, releasing its first iPad app last year. Today, Linden has released another app, and like Creatorverse and Second Life, this app is more of an engine than a game — it’s an interactive fiction platform essentially, designed to upgrade the idea of traditional text adventure games into something more replayable and dynamic. Versu is what it’s called, and you can download it for free on the App Store right now.

There are only a few stories available right away, with most of them based on Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. As you can see in the app, the action plays out like a text adventure: you get a description of the surroundings and the setting, and then can interact with various characters at different moments, either engaging them in dialogue, or performing certain simple actions. The big innovation here is that Versu allows you to play through the same scene or story from multiple perspectives, so you can play once through as one character, and then play through the same scene again as another character, playing out different reactions every time.

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