Tag Archives: iPhone

Book Weather app recommends new reads based on your book ratings

2015-09-25

Many companies have recognized the need book lovers often have when they are looking for their next book to read. Amazon has one way of recommending books, Goodreads another, and then there are dedicated apps that try and help in the discovery process. One of the applications is called Book Weather that has borrowed its symbols from weather forecasts.
book weather application on Apple App Store
Book Weather by Basement10 is a free app on Apple App Store (other versions coming later). It is intended for the iPhone but runs on an iPad as well.

Once you have installed Book Weather, create an account so that the app can remember which books you have and your ratings for the books. You can follow other readers and they can follow you.

Search for books you have or you wish you had and add them to your library. Rate the books as you add them to your library. Book Weather calculates average ratings for the books, and displays a weather symbol to indicate how hot the book is among readers.

The application worked fine on iPad, but the number books it recognized was low. We tried to enter several popular English non-fiction books into our Book Weather library, but since the app didn’t recognize the books, they weren’t added at all.

A video shows you the key features of Book Weather:

book weather application

How a Professional Photographer Frames Landscapes with a Smartphone

2015-05-05

Millions of people around the world take billions of photos on their smartphones every day. Professional photographers are proud to use their digital SLR cameras, but tend to look down on smartphone cameras. Julian Calverley is an exception. He shoots images for advertisements with a professional camera, but uses his Apple iPhone for landscape photos. How does he do it?

smartphone holder on a tripod

Here is a tip from our smartphone photographer: purchase a mini-size tripod and a phone holder that can be attached to the tripod.

For many travelers, landscape photography is the most difficult genre in photography. You see a stunning scenery in front of you, grab your camera, take a few pictures and can’t wait to view them on a large screen in your hotel room. Often, even if you have a good camera, landscape photos are disappointments because they didn’t capture the beauty of the scenery at all.

Cnet’s Andrew Hoyle got an interview from Julian Calverley who makes some very good points on photography, and shares a few tips for taking landscape images on a smartphone.

Why smartphone?
“It was a new-found freedom really. This thing was always in my pocket — in the past, everything was thought about. I had to think, ‘OK, I’m going to take my camera out, I’m going to take X amount of gear with me.’

“The downside is that people think anyone can take a picture now. Because software and camera equipment has dumbed the process down so much it’s easier to get a good result. Obviously, you can’t ‘buy’ composition and lighting.”

Tips for camera phone photographers:
1. “Avoid things that are really contrasty, because of the dynamic range of the phone.”

2. “I tend to go for simple scenes, simple compositions. The nice thing is, because you’re doing it on a phone, you have a reasonable sized preview — if an image works at that size, you’re onto something.”

3. “It’s very easy for the lens to get dirty when you’re taking it out of your pocket, so make sure you give it a wipe with a cloth — that’s basic, but it’s important.

4. “Always keep the horizons horizontal. You can correct that in apps, but you’ll lose quality to crop in.”

5. “You still need to have an eye for a good shot. That will never change.”

Julian Calverley has published a book #iphoneonly of his best landscape photos. His photo collection on Instagram features both digital SLR and smartphone photos.