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iPhone App Review: Pandora for iPhone and iPod touch

Friday amidst the fury new iPhone application releases, Pandora released an application for iPhone and iPod touch that allows users to take their personalized radio stations with them. Existing Pandora users can download the free app and instantly have access to all their current radio stations as well as add new ones. If you're not already a Pandora user then the process is slightly more difficult to get started and involves authorizing your mobile device on Pandora's web page.

Pandora for the iPhone offers the same features as traditional Pandora for your PC. Stations can be easily created around a particular artist or song that you enjoy. As you're listening to a song you can give it a thumbs up or a thumbs down to help customize the station to your preferences. Songs can be skipped if you really don't like them, bookmarked if you do, or immediately purchased through the iTunes store if you can't live without them a moment longer. The app also has an information button where you can read about why a particular song was selected to play on your radio station.

We gave the app a little test drive last night. We were really impressed with the app's interface and love that looks a lot like traditional Iphone music player, complete with full screen cover art. If you're still rocking a first gen iPhone and live somewhere where your EDGE data tends to be a little hit or miss, then so is your Pandora. We drove around town and had a few instances where the music would skip, or in some cases stop entirely which is no fun when you're trying to rock out. Most of the issues seemed to happen in-between songs so the app may be designed to work a little ahead of itself to compensate for passing through areas that aren't EDGE friendly.

Memeo makes it easy to send photos to grandma

Memeo's new Share application is designed to make the process of sending high-resolution photos a little easier, by sending them directly to another users desktop or putting them in an RSS feed they can look at in iPhoto.

The application, which is currently in beta, isn't meant to be a substitute for any photo sharing application you might currently be using, although photos shared using Memeo Share can also automatically upload photos to your Facebook account. Share is instead designed for sharing high-resolution photos and video with small groups or family and friends without having to send individual emails containing each item due to their size. Those who receive your photos can then decide what photos they want, and print out pictures they like at a quality resolution.

Memeo Share is offering a free lifetime use for the first 1,000 people to sign up for the beta with the public preview limited to 10,000 total sign ups. Get yours here.

Let TripIt help plan your next adventure

TripItAll of us could use a personal assistant every now and then, especially when it comes to planning your itinerary for a trip where you have to put together reservations for restaurants, entertainment, and rental cars into something you can follow once you reach your destination.

TripIt is a site designed to take confusion out of trying to organize all your reservations by doing it for you. The service takes all the plans you've made for your trip such as plane reservations, rental cars, and restaurant reservations and organizes them, adding important things like directions to get to where you're going and a projected weather forecast for your trip. Your TripIt itinerary can then be printed out and taken with you as well as forwarded to friends in email, synced with your personal calender, or viewed on your mobile device.

TripIt allows you to add information to your trips manually or if you schedule events with one of TripIts supported websites you can just forward your reservations to the site via email and have them added to your itinerary for you. Currently TripIt supports a slew of airline websites, restaurant reservations through OpenTable.com, and they just added support for a variety of event sites such as Ticketmaster.

Showcase your stuff with meOwns

meOwns is a site designed to allow you to showcase the stuff you own. You can list items that you actually own, or items that you would like to own on the site and add photos to those lists so people can see what you're talking about. The lists you create on meOwns can then be put into a widget that you can embed on your website or MySpace profile, or you can add a Facebook widget to display your items for your Facebook friends.

According to the site, the idea is is to bring people together through "the one thing that connects us all - the yearn to own!" While we're not so sure any normal person anyone would want to upload all the stuff they own to the site, the site could have some use in getting rid of the stuff you already own and don't want anymore. The widget could be an easy way to showcase your old movies, CDs, computer monitors, clothing, etc. for your friends, and mention things that they might own you'd be interested in taking off their hands in exchange.

One huge downside is that right now the site requires you to upload photos from your computer for each item you add. It would be nice to see them add automatic photos for things like DVDs and CDs that are going to always look the same so you don't have to upload a new picture for each individual item which gets annoying pretty quickly particularly if you have that crazy "yearn to own" they were talking about.

Get a little help from your friends with GigPark

A few years ago a ton of sites started popping up for you to review local businesses and services in your area. The idea behind the sites such as JudysBook was that reviews were written by average everyday people like you, therefore they could be trusted more than a review you read on another site. Sites allowed you to create a profile, upload a picture, and invite all your friends to join as well so you can share information.

GigPark works under the same principle, except the company assumes to some extent that the people you're friends with on the site are your actual friends, not just people who happened to find you on the site. You can import addresses from your yahoo, hotmail, or gmail account onto the site to find people you know who are already using the service, and invite those who are not.

GigPark also has a Facebook application, so you could pose questions like "Who know a great eye doctor" on facebook and solicit responses from your friends directly on Facebook. Of course your friends would also have to add the application in order for all this magic to happen, which given the multitude of annoying facebook applications kicking around these days, is probably unlikely. You can make your recommendations public however, so even without adding the application your friends can read how excited you are about your new plumber.

What do you think about sites like this? Would you use it to solicit recommendations, or would you rather just call a friend and ask?

Time Waster: Music Catch

If you need a minute to relax from some stress at work, Music Catch is the game for you. The idea behind the game is pretty simple: catch the flying shapes while some relaxing piano music plays.

Most of the shapes in the game are blue and teal in color. In addition to the blue and teal shapes there are yellow shapes that you can collect that make your man larger and multiply your score, red shapes that take away the bonus you earned with the yellow, and purple shapes that give you "Purple Power" which sucks in everything around you.

The whole thing is pretty simple. There's only one level that takes about 5 minutes to play. With top scores over a million point however, it can be just as addictive as it is relaxing.

Color coordinate your garden with Plantwire

If you're looking to work on your garden this weekend but don't really know where to start, then Plantwire may be the site for you.

Plantwire allows you to search for plants by their name, by tag, or by a particular color you're interested in. Once you find a particular plant in their database you're then given some information of where the plant will probably grow best, as well as some basic instructions on how to successfully grow the plant at home. Each plants page also includes pictures of the plant taken from Flickr (that have been licensed for use under Creative Commons) so you can get a good look at what the plant will look like.

Most of the tag searches we did on the site were pretty much a bust, and chances are if you knew the plant name of what you were looking for then you wouldn't have much use for Plantwire. The color search on the site however is very functional and could be extremely useful if you're looking to color coordinate your garden and need "the perfect red plant" to compliment what you already have. Searches by color bring up a page full of thumbnails of plants matching that color with their names that you can quickly look through to find the perfect one.

The site is currently in public beta, so their data base of plants is limited right now to around 300 with more plants expected to be added soon.

[via EmilyChang]

Decide where to eat tonight with BooRah

BooRah searches the web for mentions of restaurants in blogs and websites and analyzes the languages in the post to determine whether the reviewer was giving the restaurant a thumbs down (boo) or a thumbs up (Rah). The amount of Boo's and Rah's a restaurant gets are tallied up on the site and then the restaurant is given an overall score. BooRah users can add their own tags to a particular restaurants page, and can weigh in by giving a particular place a Boo or Rah directly on the site.

Currently the service is limited to just 20 large metro areas, with more expected to be rolled out later on. If you're fortunate enough to live in one of those areas you can search for restaurants by your particular neighborhood, and sign up for an RSS feed for your area so you always know about the latest place in town.

[via EmilyChang]

Dinglepop- Today's Time Waster

For those of us who have just managed to get over our Blockles obsession, the guys over at iminlikewithyou have another game to soak up hours upon hours of the day: Dinglepop. The principle behind the game is pretty simple. Use the canon to shoot a colored ball at the other colored balls already on the screen. Whenever three or more balls of the same color come together they'll drop. The goal of the game is to keep the dingles from reaching the bottom the screen.

The fun in this game really comes in the fact that you're playing it against anywhere from two and seven other people. As you're shooting "dingles" you can collect different items that you can use to hurt your opponents, or help improve your game. Some of the items will lower or raise the top wall on a board, others will scramble all the dingles on a board, or help colorize it. All of the items you collect are stored on the right hand side of your board and you can either decide to use them on yourself or select what opponent you want to attack with them.

Iminlikewithyou has also added a leaderboard to Dinglepop (and to Blockles) that allows you to collect medals for your wins and see where you rank against other users on the site. There's also a widget on the homescreen that lets you see exactly how much times you've wasted on the game over time and a leaderboard for the biggest time wasters.

Bloons - Today's Time-Waster


In the game Bloons, your goal is to pop all of the balloons on the screen by throwing darts at them. In each of the games 50 levels the balloons are arranged in a different order. With each level you are given a specific amount of darts to throw at the balloons (sometimes just one) and a target number of balloons you'll have to pop to move on to the next level.

Levels get progressively harder as you go on and start adding things like a bouncing wall, and walls you have to break through to get to the balloons. You also encounter "special balloons" which start effects such as giving you a boomerang rater than a dart to throw, or giving you the ability to throw three darts at once.

Create your family tree online with Kindo

Kindo is a site that allows you to create your family tree online. Adding members to the tree is fairly simple, and you can invite family members to Kindo to fill in people in your tree you might have missed. Kindo also allows you to create a pretty detailed profiles for members of you tree that include a picture, as well as their email address, regular address, phone number, birthday, website,... Read more »

Share your collection with Kollecta

Kollecta is a social networking site designed for collectors of all shapes and sizes. The site is currently in beta and has a database of "over a million collectible items" and allows you to check off what you currently have in your collection, what you'd like to add, and what you're willing to sell to someone else. Once you've created a profile with all of your stuff you can join a group and... Read more »

Amazon sends shoppers away with Product Ads

Amazon has launched a trial of a new program called Product Ads. The program allows retailers to purchase ad space on Amazon without selling their products on the site. When a user clicks on the ad rather than being taken to a product within Amazon, the customer will instead be sent to the companies 3rd party site to make a purchase. Product Ads will show a 3rd party competitor, along with the... Read more »

SuperCook helps you with tonight's dinner

Having trouble coming up with what to cook for dinner tonight? Maybe SuperCook can help. SuperCook is a search engine designed to find recipes based on the ingredients you have in your kitchen. On the site you enter what you have, and then SuperCook will tell you what you can make. Recipes are divided by Starters, Entrees, and Desserts and list any additional items you might need beside their... Read more »

Send unique video e-cards with Carded

Recently launched e-card site Carded allows you to send personalized video e-cards to your friends and family. Unlike your traditional e-cards that are sent for things like Birthdays, Holidays and special events Carded aims to focus on "life's other occasions." The site has cards for things like birthdays and Valentines Day, but also has cards wishing you well in your extramarital affair, and... Read more »