"In olden days, people hoping to get their rocks off using the Internet had no choice but to try their luck on services like Match.com or OkCupid — which require them to fill out profiles, choose flattering photos, and spend hours crafting messages that likely went unread — or wade into the sketchy backwaters of Adult FriendFinder or Craigslist postings. "
What's nice about this headline is grandparents can tell their grandchildren what "Chubby Checker" is, while grandchildren can explain "penis app."
There's a whole bunch of ways to read now, and we'd like you to indulge in all of them, as you wish, even in the ways that don't particularly help us publish writing. One thing we've often heard from folks is that they would like a quiet thing to sit down with for reading—away from the laptop and the desktop, away from the IMs and Twitter and email and noise.
With the help of 29th Street Publishing, we've made The Weekend Companion. It's a weekly Awl magazine, and it comes out every Friday, for iPhone and iPad, through Apple's Newsstand. Each issue has just five or [...]
They may have some slight security issues, but Grindr, the infamous gay "social" app that's expanding to straight-town, is finding… some ways to make money.
"French mothers can download an app which claims to tell them if their son is gay. For just one euro 99 centimes they receive a questionnaire that aims to give them pointers about their son’s sexuality." Telltale signs, according to some of the app's questions, include a love of musicals and spending a long time in the bathroom. "No app to establish whether one's daughter is a lesbian is on the market," notes RFI, but you have to imagine that will change fairly quickly.
App updates seem to come in waves. One minute you've obsessively completed updates, the next minute, your folder or app store icon on your phone has a big red "22" badge on it. Around half of all updates are minor but useful bug fixes. Sometimes they're incredibly undersold security updates, a little trick Tumblr pulled this week when they realized that they were sending passwords in plain text. (No one really went crazy about this, surprisingly, because we live in password denial: "Some company that you exchange information with is going to reveal your password to someone else.") This week's app updates cluster revealed something more interesting: lots [...]
The first time you hear a very clear Chinese woman's voice say "Sou Sou!" in your living room while you are supposedly alone, it is natural to brush it off. There are so many things making noises all the time! The second time, weeks later, when you're sitting alone by the fireplace reading at midnight, is terrifying. At this point, it is natural to wonder if this is how Moses or Allah or Jesus or Neale Donald Walsch or Oral Roberts or Ted Nugent or Charles Manson felt, when they first heard voices telling them what to do. But what did "Sou Sou!" even mean? It seemed less like [...]
Everybody loves apps, experts say—you can tell because there is an app for everything, including the monitoring of your personal health. The problem is that once you're thinking about monitoring your personal health, you're well on the way to the grave. This depressing fact may be the reason why few Americans use such phone and tablet programs to keep track of what's all too evident from the creaking, coughing, groaning and "weird discharge" most people notice just fine without the danged smart phone beeping and whirring, from wherever it's hiding.
Nearly seven in 10 U.S. adults say they are tracking weight, diet, exercise routines or some medical [...]
"Kiernan Shipka helps me make waffles; Mark Bittman of the New York Times yaps vegetarianism; J Mascis of Dinosaur Jr wrote us a theme song!; James Beard Award winner Christina Tosi of Momofuku/Milk Bar shares a pie recipe and Brooks Headley of 4-star-earner Del Posto offers a crostata recipe; There’s a remix of the David Lebovitz donuts vid that is excellent!; there are babies baking; the premiere of BabyCakes Pretzels and Sandwich Bread! There’s just so much… most everything on video!" —Awl pal Erin McKenna, proprietor of BabyCakes, has a new app with a bunch of recipes and other fun stuff. There's a trailer here, and you can [...]
Do you love reading, but hate books? SUPERB NEWS.
The Citia team takes the author’s book and deconstructs it, looking for the main and subsidiary themes in the book’s narrative. This is done without regard to the book’s original organizational structure. It doesn’t follow existing chapters per se (or at all); it’s completely rethought. Then the information is further granularized into “cards”, 100-150 words (sometimes borrowing the author’s prose but often rewritten) that summarize a particular point.
You guys, stop laughing. It gets better!
Sure, the popularity of digital devices has resulted in shorter attention spans and a constant need for stimulation and they are probably responsible for our growing inability to relate to each other on a personal level, but on the other hand they give you something to do when you are dining alone, which is going to be an increasingly frequent experience for you as the years go by because, let's be honest, who is really going to want to put up with you when there are clearly so many younger, more attractive options who actually make an effort at being pleasant out there? Bon appetit! [Via]
Well, the TechCrunch "Disrupt" conference in San Francisco has ended. And no one is talking about the drama surrounding TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington's sort-of dismissal any more, because a legal agreement was clearly made with AOL, his former employer, and everyone's obeying the NDA. Plus the vaguely promised self-immolation of the staff of TechCrunch didn't materialize in the slightest. But wait, who won TechCrunch Disrupt???
Of 31 startups competing to be the "winner," they came up with… this thing. "Shaker is a mixture of Second Life, The Sims, and Turntable.fm all mixed together using your Facebook data and connections. Your Facebook profile becomes a walking avatar, your pictures [...]
"Sean Glass, the owner of Win Records, was taken aback when he saw his overall score of 6 — and that more than one hookup labeled him #F—-dMeAndChuckedMe. 'I can’t believe people say that,' says Glass, 28. 'I’ve never f—– and chucked anybody. I’ve just had sex with girls without it turning into a relationship. And #GoneByMorning is not true. I’ve very rarely slept over at anyone’s apartment.'" —"Here's the app every single guy in NYC fears"
"Diego Pizzagalli spent a good chunk of 10 years at Harvard doing what most professors at elite institutions do: research. Specifically, research on depression. He's fMRI'd and EEG'd a lot of gray matter, but most of his work got stuck in the lab and never evolved into any real-world application. Then he developed something that was too good to let collect dust in the hallowed halls of academia: software that he says could help treat depression.
Now with the help of the Baltimore-based startup incubator Canterbury Road Partners, Pizzagalli is set to turn his lab invention into an app. MoodTune will be a series of simple games that when played [...]
Remember the hope and joy of the 2009 inauguration of President Barack Obama, the historic first Hawiian to become president of the mainland United States? People were so excited—especially black people, who seemed to see something special about the Harvard law school graduate's move to national politics. (White conservatives were, in turn, very suspicious about African-Americans managing to travel to D.C. for the 2009 ceremony, while other blacks trapped in flooded New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina only managed to lose their homes, drown or get shot down by white cops.)
Anyway, things will be a lot smoother this year, in Washington. For one thing, hardly anybody wants to go [...]
Something is going on with the Internet, and, once again, it's fun, but maybe not that fun. There's a rash of actually quite cool new "products"—services, websites, "apps" (sigh)—and they have a lot in common. From our pals at Branch to things like Medium and Svbtle (oh that name) and on back to Pinterest, and then forward to a few other projects in development, well… there's a visual language going on, for one thing, and it's like John Herrman writes: It's an internet where every blog is Daring Fireball, where every post looks like Instapaper, where every discussion is led by its rightful leaders, and where [...]
So all the apps that take and upload and store your address books (which is a lot of them!) are making changes to their apps! By… sort of vaguely notifying you that they are doing so. So… not by not doing that. For instance, Twitter: "In place of 'Scan your contacts,' we will use 'Upload your contacts' and 'Import your contacts.'" Ha! Good one. Because "upload" really means "we're going to store every phone number and address and name of everyone in your phone for 18 months." WELL? Once people started digitally "signing" that endless user agreement in iTunes without clicking through all 36 or 42 pages [...]
Everyone has been going crazy about "frictionless sharing" for the last week. That's Facebook's cute new term for what happens when you give permission for something new and fun to enter your life and then it takes you to a party and "auto-shares" your activity with the world. You drunk slag. What to do? Short version long… you should probably get off the Internet now while the getting is good. (Well? At least consider it!)