Giving Away the Store? What Your Apps Know.

An assortment of Android apps have requested mobile device locations every three minutes on average over a two-week period (works out to over 6,000 requests), according to new research by the Wall Street Journal’s Elizabeth Dwoskin.


In her recent article regarding attitudes toward the research, How Your Apps Can Track You, I learned the following very interesting tidbits:

  • 91% of Americans have anxiety about privacy online.
  • 91% of those polled said they have anxiety about losing control of their personal data.
  • 86% said they have made efforts to mask their online footprint.

When people learned that they could receive nudges or notifications to learn how often companies like Facebook, The Weather Channel, or Groupon track you, it was overwhelmingly received.  Most, after seeing the data, have restricted permissions.


Bye-bye Internet Explorer. Hello Chrome!

wsj-browser-graphAccording to a Buzzfeed article published recently, IE used to enjoy 80% market share in the US – but after some other faster browsers were released, it actually became a subject of mockery.

News is, Microsoft has decided to discontinue Internet Explorer (IE) and is planning to introduce a new browser  for its Windows 10 platform instead.

The new browser is named Spartan and is expected to be bundled with desktop/mobile versions of Windows 10.  From a developers point of view, this is really pretty good news.  Web site and electronic media developers need to be concerned with which browser types the majority of consumers use because the Web sites we build need to respond very well in those environments for years to come.

Not surprisingly, Google’s Chrome browsers are now the most popular in the U.S., surpassing Internet Explorer.

The Wall Street Journal reported recently in an article titled, Google Passes Microsoft in U.S. Browser Market Share, “Google’s Chrome and Android browsers had 31.8% share in April, up from around 26% the prior year, Adobe said. Internet Explorer had 30.9% share, down from roughly 37% a year ago…On mobile devices, Apple’s Safari is by far the most popular, with 59% of searches, reflecting the strength of Apple’s iPhone.

But Google is first overall, because Internet Explorer has little share on mobile devices, and Safari has little share on PCs.”


Alas… it’s Bendgate!

It’s reassuring to know that I’m just like everybody else out there because the bending iPhone 6 Plus story (subject of my blog post just yesterday) has gone viral.  Apparently many, many, many people everywhere found this an interesting read (on an otherwise uninteresting day).  And, not surprisingly, Apple’s stock price has declined in lock step… ouch… you can read more about it in the article, Apple Gets Bent!apple

Meanwhile, Apple, Inc.’s stepped up quickly to say something about it themselves!  And a good thing too.   They defended the phones integrity by saying the, “new iPhones are made from a custom grade of anodized aluminum, which is tempered for extra strength. Apple said the phones also feature stainless steel and titanium inserts to reinforce high-stress locations.”  And, the video I posted does look like that’s the case too.  After all, there’s no way they didn’t test for the occurrence of the phone’s durability under the stress of pant-pocket sitting…that would be negligent!

Also, as was wisely noted today, one could drop the phone and break it just as easily!  Abuse is abuse.  Most can agree,  reasonable care is required in the handling of most electronics (including iPhones).

Hum, maybe Apple’s next industry-leading innovation should be a truly bend-able iPhone?



The magical bending Apple iPhone 6 Plus

iPhone6Uh oh… what’s this… seems there’s incontrovertible proof that the newest Apple iPhone 6 Plus can “… Bend It Like Beckham” (WSJ article 9/24/14)!  The article by Daisuke Wakabayashi cites videos of users who have reportedly bent their large-screened iPhone with their hands.  But was this something Apple intended?  Don’t recall a bullet point with that particular design feature mentioned, do you?  With so much buzz about this new device, of course someone had to try it!

The video commentator notes that there’s a weakness in the aluminum structure around the side buttons that could be vulnerable to the kind of bends that potentially happen when, for instance, you put your iPhone in the front or back pockets of your jeans.

The video clearly shows that under some duress–hands only mind you–the iPhone does bend significantly near the button cutouts.  It’s a nice BIG phone so there’s a fair bit of malleable aluminum. “It won’t be the most durable from that standpoint but look at that footprint… !”

SO, looks like you’ll want to keep an eye on that.  It’ll be interesting to see how Apple responds to this in upcoming weeks.

Nikola Tesla Tribute

teslaOh yes… the Nikola Tesla Museum site is a pretty remarkable tribute and worth a look for design and coding inspiration (historical edification too)!  Nikola Tesla was a brilliant inventor of the Thomas Edison school (worked for Edison) circa 1880’s and is best known for his design contributions to the alternating current (AC) electrical system and things like, oh:

  • Radio
  • X-Rays
  • Wireless communications
  • Fluorescent bulbs
  • Remote controls
  • Electric motors

The museum site is very well thought-out, has great design sense, and works intuitively and smoothly.  LOVE the home page in just about every way!  Excellent graphics, terrific contrast, just the right amount of interesting interactivity… the lightning is perfect. Fun and really, really well done.

Trianglify… do it today.

This is a nice effect and worth checking out!

trianglfyIt’s called  and it’s a javascript library for generating custom, colored “triangle meshes” that can be used as SVG images and CSS backgrounds. As you can see in the image above, this little tool has some potential for adding creative, colorful interest to designs.

Made by Quinn Rohlf, Trianglify is open source software.  There are controls so you can control elements such as:  Noise; Cell size; and Cell padding , as well as color schemes of course.

If you navigate over to the Github page and scroll down a bit you’ll see Javascript and some simple code to generate a background and apply it with inline CSS.