Posts with the tag: app reviews

Appy Hour: PadMapper

App: PadMapper Apartments and Homes for Rent  unnamed
By: PadMapper, Inc.
Price: Free
Device: Reviewed on an iPhone

Headed back to campus and looking for an apartment? You may have heard of the popular website Padmapper, which puts available apartments right on a Google Map for you to search. The website’s free app, available for iPhone and Android, is a great way to find apartments on the go!

Using Padmapper’s app, you can filter rentals by rent, number of bedrooms, or even if the apartment allows your furry friends! If you’re looking for a pool or laundry on-site, try using the keyword search. You can refine your results until you find exactly what you want, then view the units in either a map or a list. Selecting an apartment gives you contact information, pictures, and a link to the original listing. You can even save your favorites if you make an account! Whether you’re looking for a three bedroom house or a studio apartment, Padmapper is a great place to find relevant leads.

While finding an awesome apartment for an awesome school year at CUA is…well…awesome, there’s something even more awesome to consider. This app was originally just a mashup of Craigslist and Google Maps (which, incidentally, resulted in a lawsuit against Padmapper that was only recently settled). Putting information of two different types together can yield incredibly useful results: Map + Craigslist = MAGIC. Padmapper’s slogan is “We make apartment hunting suck less.” And, I have to say, I think they’ve succeeded!

So, if you have an idea to make something suck less, get out there and make it! We’ve got lots of Lynda classes to get you started!


Appy Hour: TED

App: TED  TED logo
By: TED Conferences
Price: Free
Device: Reviewed on an iPad

TED, by TED Conferences, allows users to view lectures from TED conferences held around the world.

When I have 15-20 minutes to kill and nothing better to do, I like check out a TED talk lecture. I am certainly not picky as I find most of them, if not fascinating, then slightly interesting. So I open up the TED application and click the “Surprise Me” option. I’m offered a few choices, “Ingenious” and “Jaw-Dropping” are my favorites. Next I choose how much time I have to watch, some talks are as little as 3 minutes. Finally I’m asked to watch now or watch later. The latter option downloads the talk for later viewing.

TED also features playlists by notable speakers and celebrities. Do you like the television show Lost? Watch 6 talks that help Carlton Cuse to create. Fan of magic? David Blaine has 7 suggestions for you. There are also playlists curated by TED around various topics.

Of course you can star your favorite talks and watch them again later.

Overall, the TED app is a great application that delivers the content it promises.

Appy Hour:

App: logo
Price: Free
Device: Reviewed on an iPad

The app, by, allows users to access their content from mobile devices.

While offers a wide variety of education videos, my experience with has been learning about desktop softwares and applications. What makes this application great is that I can watch the videos on the iPad, or other mobile device, while simultaneously working with the software on my desktop.

When you open the application, you see “recommendations for you” on top half of the dashboard and a combination of new and recently viewed courses on the bottom half. The triple line icon in the upper left intuits options. When you click, you are asked to log in. Once logged in, your courses, assignments, playlists and history are there on a left side menu. In addition, you are offered courses by subject, a settings option, and a contact option. Meanwhile, you can still see the dashboard on the right.

The true value of the experience is the content. This application offers a very accessible and uncomplicated space to view their content. I usually disregard the star rating on reviews if there are less than 100 reviews. This app has 22 reviews in the App Store averaging 4 ½ stars. Considering the app experience, I agree with the high rating.

Appy Hour: Blackboard Mobile Learn

Welcome to Appy Hour, a series in which we review apps related to learning, reading, or that may be of special interest to the CUA community.

App: Blackboard Mobile Learn™  Blackboard, Inc. logo
By: Blackboard Inc.
Price: Free
Device: Reviewed on an iPad

Blackboard Mobile Learn allows users to access their Blackboard content from mobile devices.

With a 1 ½ star iTunes rating, I went into this app with some skepticism. My initial reaction is that it is sleek looking and intuitive with the menu bar on the right and the dashboard down the middle. After I clicked on a course, the course content links appeared down the middle.

At this point I decided to look at my course reserves. When I clicked, a Safari browser opened in the app and I was essentially using Blackboard in a web browser, but within the app. So, I decided to try the discussion board–same thing.

As far as I can tell, this app has a sleek beginning for looking at your Blackboard content, but really, you just see it in a web browser after all. I also feel that Blackboard’s interface is best utilized on a PC or laptop. I’m afraid I agree with the low rating for this application.