Tag Archives: app

Death by Lava: There’s an App for That

Gather ‘round, children, and let me tell you of the dream in which I murdered thousands of people by using an app!

In this dream, I still live in Calgary. But rather than the city being situated where it is currently, it sat in this basin surrounded by a bunch of dormant volcanoes.

One of these volcanoes is of particular interest to scientists. Specifically, they want to see if they can make it active again. Because Science™. So to help their cause, they create an app. The app is a giant button that, when pressed, sets off one of many explosive charges that have been placed inside the dormant volcano. The scientists make a special news announcement about this app and encourage people to use it. Because Science™.

And I love this app. Anytime I have a moment, I open it and press the detonation button.

One day, Nate and I have to go shopping, so we head to this big mall that’s outside of the basin, kind of along the rim somewhere. From the parking lot, you can look down into the basin and can see the ring of dormant volcanoes around it.

Standing out in this parking lot, I can’t tell which of the volcanoes is the one we’re trying to make active again, so I pull out my phone and open the app with the intention of seeing if I can tell which volcano it is if I set off one of the charges. I push the button approximately 40 times (thus setting off 40 charges) and look around to see if I can see where the detonations are happening. Then I notice that there’s lava bubbling up in one of the volcanoes that is rapidly spilling out down the sides of the volcano and heading right towards Calgary.

I’m like “OH SHIT”—more due to the fact that Jazzy is down there in the path of the lava rather than the fact that like 1.2 million people are down there as well—and run to tell Nate that we need to get back down there to save our kitty.

But then I woke up, so I don’t know what kind of carnage I caused.

Odd news.

Cat Collector

Okay, so I know I’m behind the times in this (most likely) because that’s just how I roll, but I just downloaded the cutest app: Neko Atsume!

You get a yard and some cat food and can use the food to entice cats to hang out in your yard. The cats show their gratitude by bringing you fish, which you can then use to buy all sorts of goodies to fill the yard and keep the cats coming.

There are a bunch of “regular” cats and then there are some rare ones that appear every once and awhile if you’ve got the right items in your yard.

Seriously. Is this cute or what?

You get a little album for each cat and if they enjoy your yard, you get a little memento from them.

Fitbit vs. iTreadmill

Yo, people! So as I mentioned on “Fake Christmas” day, My dad got me a Fitbit ‘cause he knows I’m obsessive about tracking stuff (also I think he got one for himself, too, ‘cause he used to have a Nike one awhile back that’s probably dead by now).

Anyway, I decided to go for a walk today and compare what Fitbit said to what my iTreadmill app said.

So here we go!

iTreadmill: 11.00
Fitbit: 11.01

iTreadmill: 24,240
Fitbit: 23,473

iTreadmill: 175 minutes
Fitbit: 207 minutes

Calories Burned
iTreadmill: 702
Fitbit: 2,420

The mileage and steps aren’t too different from one another, which is surprising, ‘cause I can’t calibrate Fitbit to my stride (but I’ve done so for the iTreadmill app). The time for the Fitbit is longer because it doesn’t shut off when I stop moving. The iTreadmill app does (which I kind of like better, ‘cause then I know how much time I actually spent moving rather than just standing at intersections, in line at the grocery store, etc.). The calories are the biggest difference, but that’s because the Fitbit tracks “resting” calories burned as well, so the 2,420 is what it thinks I’d burned up until the walk, and then on the walk itself (I don’t think I burn nearly that many calories in a day. My body doesn’t manufacture it’s own heat, dude).

But the best part about the Fitbit is that it tracks your heartrate, which is something the iTreadmill can’t do. So if I’m not going to use it as my “official” tracker for steps/mileage, I can at least use it to track my heartrate.


In this blog: Claudia doesn’t know how to sleep properly

So I’ve been looking at my sleep graphs from that Sleep Cycle Smart Alarm app that I’ve been using. In particular, I’ve been finding pictures of the graphs of other people and seeing if they look anything like mine.

They really don’t.

Here are graphs representative of many of the ones I saw online:

firstgraph secondgraph




Sources, in order, are here, here, here, and here.

And here are several typical ones for me:

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I don’t know if it’s just because I don’t sleep for very long or what, but I don’t do the whole “multiple sleep cycles” thing at night and just kind of have two or three ups and downs. Or maybe that’s why I don’t have to sleep as long as most people. I have super long REM parties rather than short ones, so I don’t need as long of a night’s sleep.

Who knows.

Haha, that September 19-20 night of mine is wild.

Eminem is a rapper. M&M’s come in a wrapper. CONSPIRACY??

I’ve used the Sleep Cycle Smart Alarm Clock app for 50 nights now, so why not look at some data from it? The two things I track are the length of my sleeps and the quality ratings (which are, as far as I can tell, based partly off of how long a sleep is and how much time is spent in deep sleep according to the app).


As far as time goes, I’ve slept an average of 4 hours and 35 minutes over the past 50 nights, with the shortest night being 3 hours and 13 minutes and the longest night being 7 hours and 43 minutes.

For quality, my average over the past 50 nights has been 45.37%, with a minimum of 21% and a maximum of 79%.



Yeah, I don’t sleep very much.




The only thing I really know in ASL, apart from about 5 signs, is the alphabet. This app is a cool way to practice recognizing the letter signs in a QWERTY layout, even if you don’t need to send any sign language messages. It’s also got a few word signs as well.

I’d really like to learn ASL to the point where I could have a conversation with someone using it (at least, a conversation in which I wouldn’t have to look ridiculous spelling out every single word). I CAN spell relatively quickly, though; I think that comes from the fact that when I’m walking and listening to music, I like to try and sign the first letter of every word in the song as it plays.

Because what else am I supposed to be doing with my hands when I’m walking?

Sleep App-nea

Nate found this app called Sleep Cycle, which tracks the quality/rhythm of your sleep based on how much you move at night. I wanted to try it, so I found a version for my iPad (my iPod’s software is too out of date to run it) and gave it a try.

It hates me.

I haven’t gotten a single “sleep quality” rating over 50%, but I’m guessing that’s because I often sleep less than 5 (sometimes 4) hours a night. Also, some of the movements it picks up are probably from Nate’s side of the bed instead of mine.

But I already seem to have a pretty consistent sleep pattern as far as my movement goes.

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I also don’t sleep much at all, but I already knew that.



Rome was actually built in a day and a half.

When I’m not carrying anything and feel like I could run five miles, I get to the bus stop just as the bus is pulling in.
When I have 50 pounds combined of backpack and groceries and it’s windy and cold, I miss the bus by about 30 seconds.


One gripe I’ve had with my iPod Touch is the fact that, unlike the Nano, it doesn’t have a pedometer. I love Nano’s pedometer ‘cause I’m that type of obsessive person who likes to track progress and estimate changes in my daily patterns and just generally be a number watching weirdo.
But today I found probably the coolest “you’re obsessive so you’ll love this” app: iTreadmill. I will utilize this tomorrow on my walk to whatever the hell mall I decide to go to, but I calibrated it this afternoon and can already tell it’s awesome.

It tracks:

  • Steps
  • Steps per minute
  • Time
  • Average pace
  • Average speed
  • Calories
  • Distance

It keeps track of your history and gives you graphs! You can create a playlist to listen to as you go (I just put my whole “Favorites” playlist to play), you can enter your weight to get an accurate calories estimate, and you can set step, calories, distance, or time goals and set alarms to sound for certain milestones to your goals if you like that kind of stuff (I do). It also pauses automatically after 5 seconds of inactivity so waiting at stoplights and such won’t lessen your average speed.

Download it, dudes.

Also, they should just make this a static claim on CTV weather for Vancouver:

Earlier today when they still had Saturday’s prediction up they actually had words (“light rain,” “rain,” “more rain” (seriously), “rain and snow”), but I guess they ran out of synonyms.



Okay, I promise I’m not an Apple whore, but I absolutely love this app.
It’s called Measures and it contains conversions to so many freaking units for so many different applications. The following measurement categories are included: length, area, weight, volume, temperature, time, fuel consumption, data storage, speed, currencies, acceleration, pressure, energy, power, force, torque, angle, charge, density, luminance, SI prefixes, flow, radioactivity, magnetic flux, magnetic flux density, clothes sizes and shoe sizes.


And like I said, SO MANY UNITS. For example, I now know that I am 0.86805556 fathoms tall, weigh 29,166.67 pennyweights, am 8,021,280 moments old, and wear a size 35 shoe in Brazil.
It’s also super easy to use. Here’s a review of it.
I don’t know how many of you have Touches/iPhones, but I recommend this not only because it’s useful, but because it’s ridiculously entertaining.

99 cents, people. Get it.

Today’s song: Better by Regina Spektor

Dear Lord: thank you for YouTube

This is like 4,000 times funnier than it has any right to be.

Desire to get an iPhone just for this app = high.

Today’s song: Could It Be You (Punk Rock Chick) by Hwood