Appy Monday – FoodCloud

 
On this weeks AppyMonday we’re looking at FoodCloud, an Irish App and initiative co-created by Trinity students Iseult Ward and Aoibheann O’Brien. 
 
Foodcloud is an app that lets businesses upload details of their excess food. The service then texts a local charity, who in turn can pick up the donation and share it with those who need it.
Ward and O’Brien looked at ways to get food that would otherwise be discarded into the hands of these people. They estimate that Irish retailers produce about 87,000 tonnes of surplus food a year, most of which is dumped at a cost of €8.5 million. With no existing redistribution infrastructure they set up FoodCloud.
 
The App itself is very basic but that isn’t an issue; it gives the retailer a very simple signup process to get them up and running and able to submit their details quickly and easily.
 
The largest retailer to work with FoodCloud has been Tesco who trialled the service from October 2013 to February 2014 in 18 Tesco stores and donated almost 60,000 meals or 27 tonnes of food to 38 charities. They now plan to roll out the service to their stores nationwide.
 
Any charities or  retailers  who are interested in participating can register with the app or visit www.foodcloud.ie for more information.

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Appy Monday – Ultimate Rugby App

Coming up to the Ultimate Rugby Apps first birthday in October, I thought it would be a good choice for this weeks blog edition of Appy Monday.

The Ultimate Rugby app was released in October 2012 and is the brainchild of rugby legend Brian O’Driscoll and software entrepreneur Ray Nolan. The app is not just geared towards Irish rugby fans, but rugby fans Worldwide as the go-to app for Rugby. Not only does it cover the national competitions such as the Aviva Premiership, RaboDirect Pro 12, the Heineken Cup, the Six Nations and the Rugby Championship it is also reporting on Tier 1 European and Southern Hemisphere tournaments.

The app itself, is one of the most easy to use sports app’s I have used in quite a while. The Ultimate Rugby app gives you a choice to select whichever teams/players/tournaments from the menu to bring you to all the current and past information relevant to your selection. Ultimate Rugby app has all the news surrounding a match. All you have to do is click on a match and you have news, such as a twitter feed, team overview and profiles, live feed commentary from Ultimate Rugby’s own commentators/journalists and the score updates from the game and live updates of the league tables all from within the app. Users can even comment on each score of the game, proved to be quite entertaining when watching a game at home on your own! When the match is over, you get the match stats for each game also.

What I really love here are the team profiles, they give you everything you need to know outside of a specific game. Where they are in different tournaments, past and current. Also linked to individual team members profiles, with playing position, bio, age/height/weight info, links to their own websites & social media, recent matches stats and past teams they played with.

This app is a definite must for all rugby fans. Download now to be up to date with the current goings on in the RaboDirect Pro 12. By the time the Heineken Cup kicks off in just under 2 weeks, you will be a pro navigating the app!

Click here to download the android version.

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Social Platform Phlok to create 100 jobs with $600,000 investment

Phlok Helping People Shop Local!

 

Irish owned Social Platform Phlok, are delighted to announce the creation of 100 new jobs over the coming 18 months following investment of $600,000.

With the investment of $600,000 from private and institutional investors, Phlok will be recruiting over 100 new staff in the areas of Software Development, Sales, Training and Account Management over the coming months across the island of Ireland.

Phlok is a unique rewards platform that offers end-users the opportunity to earn virtual currency as they interact with businesses on Phlok. Paul Graham (CEO) said, “Gaining these investors allows us to execute on our vision to assist local businesses to attract consumers back to their main streets.  Phlok’s goal is to connect local businesses with local people incentivising consumers to Shop Local.

 

Having launched just six months ago Phlok has already gained 300 businesses throughout Ireland including shops, restaurants, bars, off licenses, pharmacies, coffee shops, car dealerships, clothes retailers and even clairvoyants. Phlok businesses have already witnessed in excess of €200,000 worth of sales and over 10,000,000 social media impressions occur through Phlok’s innovative platform.

A unique social media concept, Phlok is the new web and smartphone platform that incentivises consumers with virtual currency (Phlok points), collectable and spendable with any business on the Phlok network. Businesses worry less about their social media presence as their customers are promoting them when collecting their Phlok points and consumers gain more than Phlok points, they are exposed to exclusive promotions that local businesses can target them with from time to time. The innovation with Phlok is the ability to collect immense value as a consumer without it costing any individual business more than a few cents. Phlok points accumulate extremely quickly and can become quite addictive, bringing people back to Main Street more often. 

Paul added “We established Phlok to be the key digital incentive platform and become pervasive in the marketplace. Phlok is becoming an additional integral element of the business to business and business to consumer economy.  Our overall aim is to get local customers to transact more often with local business and support an ongoing vibrant community. Phlok makes the term ‘Shop Local’ make sense

The impact that Phlok can have on a business is extremely measurable. Phlok’s Business Control Panel gives simple to use and vital information on the people that have connected with them on the Phlok platform. Not only, can they see who is connected to them, but they get visibiity of key consumer data based on spending habits with the ability to communicate individually or by demographic group when encouraging them to try their service or product.

Phlok is not targeted at a specific demographic, in the past six months statistics have shown a range of user profiles expanding across all ages, professions and geographical areas.Phlok uses virtual currency incentives to make social media easy and profitable for businesses giving consumers a reason to shop local.

To download Phlok, click here

Phlok for business, click here 

To visit the main Phlok website, click here 

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Appy Tuesday – Five Photography Apps for Android

Appy bank holiday Tuesday to all! So we are a day late this week because of the sunny weather but we will make it up to everyone by looking at 5 cool photography apps instead of just one! This week I got a little help from photographer Alan Devins.

Alan is a full time school photographer by day and a freelance portrait photographer in his spare time. He lives and breathes photography be it portraits, landscapes or products, So who better to guide us through photography app purchases!

1.       Camera Zoom FX €1.99

Camera Zoom FX is an excellent app and has become my default camera app. This camera app gives you easy access to necessary options such as zoom, white balance and flash control, as well as different shooting modes like timer, burst, time-lapse and voice activation. A useful feature is the stable shot mode which takes the picture automatically when the phone reaches a certain level of stability. This app really shines with its well packed post-processing effects and these are presented to you as soon as you take the picture.

 

2.       Fast Burst Camera €3.99

Fast Burst Camera is a high speed camera app that lets you take up to 30 photos per second. This is really handy for capturing exciting sporting moments like Tippeary scoring a goal or Mayo putting over a point from a free, but can be just as good for getting shots of your kids playing on the trampoline. This app also has a built in option to create an animated gif file from the pictures taken. The quality of the pictures can be adjusted to allow for more or less captures and the settings allow you to tweak options such as delay between shots and whether you want 1,3,5 shots or continuous shooting. With no shutter lag it means your picture is taken as soon as you press the button with no delay. Definitely a very useful camera app to have to make sure you never miss a thing. 

 

3.       Retro Camera Plus €2.49

Retro Camera Plus is a novel camera effects app. Rather than giving different ‘post’ processing effects like instagram, Retro Camera Plus lets you choose from a range of old cameras types which all give a different end result. It may not be the quickest app to use when you need to capture an important moment but this app isn’t trying to be a replacement camera. It is great fun to use and its novel approach is welcome over the majority of picture editor apps that are available on the play store.

 

4.       Pro HDR Camera €1.51

With the popularity of HDR photography I had to include a HDR photography app in this post. A HDR image is basically two or more different exposures of the exact same subject compiled to give a single image of High Dynamic Range which can result in a stunning image. Given HDR’s recent spike in popularity there are surprisingly very few apps available worth considering and (maybe unsurprisingly) even then you won’t get the same result as you would from a computer and dedicated software. I found Pro HDR Camera to be easy to use with both the manual and auto modes and the results were great. If the choice for a holiday snapshot was between the standard camera and this I would probably use this to bring my images closer to life.

 

5.       PicSay Pro – Photo Editor €2.99

While not strictly a camera app, PicSay Pro deserves a mention on this list. It’s a feature rich photo editor that is a must have for anyone wanting to get a little more from their photos. Besides the fun ‘stickers’ that can be added to your photos, its selection of effects and post processing is remarkable and if used right can make a throw away photo into something special in seconds. Compared to Adobe’s Photoshop Express PicSay Pro gives far more choice of effects and adjustments and is worth the low cost.

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Appy Monday – Map My Ride

Cycling in Ireland has never been more popular and you don’t have to be training for the Tour de France to pop on a helmet, hop on your bike and take to the road. 

Today we are looking at the Map My Ride App, available free on Android and iOS. Map My Ride allows users to plan, track and analyse a workout from their mobile phone. There is a lot of competition in this area of the market and after testing many cycling/route tracker apps out since I purchased my bike seven weeks ago, Map My Ride is the clear winner in my eyes.

                                      

Map My Ride is easy to use, takes very little time to set-up when you want to get going and will track your route, speed, distance, calories burned and much more. One of the features I enjoyed most on this app was the voice notifications which alert you to your progress along the route. 

Starting out with this app is easy, you have a choice of signing up to an account or you can log in with your Facebook, you just need to add some extra details such as height, weight and gender to maximise the benefit you get from the app. Tracking your route could not be simpler, simply hit record from the main menu when you depart for your cycle and pause when you are finished your workout and Map My Ride will take care of the rest, uploading your route to their website whilst giving you the options to make it public or private

Not only can you track your own cycling routes but you can look at routes others have cycled locally and compete in challenges on these routes to gain the fastest times.

Map My Ride also has extra features that I do not use such a food and water log, calories budget and weight tracking.

To download the app from the iTunes store, Click Here

To download the app from Google Play Store, Click Here 

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