Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for the ‘Software’ Category

Cool clock

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Take a look.

Written by LeisureGuy

12 September 2014 at 10:05 am

Posted in Software

More on becoming fodder and compost for corporations…

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Written by LeisureGuy

10 September 2014 at 4:10 pm

Apple lock-in now visible

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Read this one. Wonder how long before there’s a (very slight) surcharge to exchange data with a non-Apple device for which Apple sells an equivalent…

Written by LeisureGuy

10 September 2014 at 3:30 pm

The best note-taking app for iPhone

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David Pierce at The Verge takes a look and picks the best (and a runner-up).

Written by LeisureGuy

4 September 2014 at 2:12 pm

Posted in Software, Technology

This 107 Million Person ‘SimCity’ Region Is a Portrait of Our Megacity Future

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Fascinating. Derek Mead writes at Motherboard:

Megacities are our future. It’s simple math: When you’ve got one Earth and an unending boom in population growth, the gravitational pull of the world’s economic and population centers will continue to drag rural dwellers in—if the Sprawl doesn’t absorb them by default.

A United Nations report from July lays the issue bare: This year, some 54 percent of the world lived in urban centers, a number projected to grow to 66 percent by 2050. That growth “could add another 2.5 billion people to urban populations by 2050, with close to 90 percent of the increase concentrated in Asia and Africa.”

The same report also notes that in 1990, there were ten megacities of 10 million people or more on Earth; now there are 28, 16 of which are located in Asia. Keeping a city of that size running is challenge enough, but what happens when they morph into sprawling regions with populations ten times larger?

The video above gives us a glimpse, even if it’s based on an 11-year-old video game (but a pretty realistic one at that). Peter Richie spent eight months planning and building a megacity in vanilla SimCity 4, and the end result is mind-boggling (especially as a former mayor myself): 107.7 million people living in one massive, sprawling region. I’ll let Richie’s stats speak for themselves:

81 large city tiles to make one Mega-Region
26,542 km of paved road (16,492 miles)
8,626 km of subway lines (5,360 miles)
324 Hydrogen power plants (6,000,000 megawatts of energy)
486 Waste to Energy Plants
512 Large Water Pumps
Over 2,000 elementary and high schools
81 Universities, 162 Colleges

Richie told me that he initially came up with the goal for a 100 million person region “using no mods and no cheats” back in December, and spent a couple months planning things out before beginning construction in March. . .

Continue reading.

Here’s the city being built:

Of course, this all collapses with global warming: not enough food, plus large cities seem to me quite fragile, depending an a complex network of cooperation, communication, and transport, all of which will break down as food becomes scarce.

Written by LeisureGuy

29 August 2014 at 9:41 am

Posted in Games, Software

Making your iOS video actually work well

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Very interesting article on an app to supercharge your iOS video. Hayley Tsukayama reports in the Washington Post:

Video editing is often neither quick nor easy, but Fly aims to make shooting footage from your phone’s camera a little bit of both. The app has a simple look that makes it easy to shoot video — including a built-in reminder to shoot in the horizontal landscape orientation for more professional-looking videos. Users can combine multiple short clips for quick videos and use basic editing features, such as the ability to adjust the volume of each clip individually, for free. They can share finished videos over YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and Tumblr.

Fly undoubtedly works best when you pay for additional features that include the ability to trim and reorder clips, add voice-overs or music from a stock library, add transitions or use tools that let you include split-screen or picture-in-picture footage. Those cost $5.99 as a package, and will seriously up the quality of your mini-movies. Ideally, Fly would include at least some of these features in the free version — trimming and reordering come to mind — but the overall quality of the app mitigates some of that high price. Free, with optional add-ons, for iOS devices.

$6 sounds like a good deal to get that kind of capability.

Written by LeisureGuy

23 August 2014 at 9:03 am

Posted in Daily life, Software

For those who are mildly obsessive in tracking things

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Take a look at this review of rTRACKER. I would buy it in a heartbeat if I had a smartphone—and if I had a smartphone, I think I would go with iPhone based on what I’ve been reading about security issues: Android phones, in being more open, are also more vulnerable. But even the iPhone is a little unsettling in how much info is collected.

Still, for me it’s not an issue: I’m mostly at home. But I do like rTRACKER.

Written by LeisureGuy

13 August 2014 at 11:37 am


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