Posts tagged Android
I have been playing with fan conventions as an amateur (READ: not my full time job) event designer and promoter for over a decade. In that time, I learned that conventions are very similar to theme parks in a number of way. My favorite parallel? Con guides and park brochures.
Essentially the same thing, con guides and park brochures both present where to find entertainment (panels, rides, shows, etc.) and what time said entertainment is supposed to occur. Somehow, though, theme park employees still get asked the most obvious of questions:
“What time is the three o’clock parade?”
The point being: even if you print it, make it pretty and hand it out, people don’t like to read when they are out to be entertained. Thus theme parks and fan conventions both donate hours of time and creative energy to an element of their respective businesses that (let’s face it) less then 20% of attendees actually read.
Sure: everyone picks one up… but how many people keep them? How many get lost? How many get destroyed from a sweaty back pockets in fanboy jeans?
The solution: put it on smart phones. For a couple of years, fan conventions have been looking for ways to create an App for their respective shows. I noticed an article on The Convention Fans Blog about a universal app that can be customized for events and I looked into it for our (then) upcoming convention: The Florida Anime Experience.
Thus, I discovered the Guidebook App.
Guidebook is a clever app (for both Android and iPhone) that allows shows of all sizes to showcase and inform their attendees about not just their convention schedule, but also:
- Event descriptions
- Vendor info
- Key events (“Don’t miss our most attended panels!”)
- Guest Bios
- Twitter updates (based on hashtags and accounts)
In short: the Convention Guide app is a dream come true for convention promoters and tree huggers across the world: easy to access info for attendees and less wasted paper.
I should note, though, that the element that makes the Guidebook App so amazing to me isn’t the app itself (which I’ve already established as EPIC in it’s own right) but the ease of use as a promoter to plug in the information and artwork from my event. By the time I was done, the guide for The Florida Anime Experience didn’t look like “any other” event guide… it took on the character, look and feel of our Japanese animation convention. The guide conveyed the convention’s personality.
The team at Guidebook App make the creation process easy and painless which, in turn, allows promoters to create a quality and useful product for their attendees.
So why I am I writing such a blatant plug? Simple: because the product really is that good and I think other conventions should pick up on it.
For those of you that know me, I have had a long standing boycott of the iPhone due to the fact that I need a physical keyboard on any texting or smart phone that I own. I have tried time and time again and I just can’t seem to get used to the whole touch screen keyboard thing.
Thus the Sprint version of the new Samsung phone was a total win for me since it includes the sliding keyboard. Buying this phone also introduced me to the world of Google’s Android OS. Previously, I owned a Palm Pre which used the WebOS platform… and even though I LOVE my new phone, there are still things that the Palm OS did just a little better.
Anyway, in playing with Android, I have found some pretty snazzy apps. If you like to suggest some others I should try, please let me know. Here’s the ten that I have been the most impressed with/enjoyed the most so far…
AndFTP - the best of the free FTP apps I could find.
Angry Birds – when is the full version coming out??!!! Even Palm’s WebOS has a full version already. Dammit!
Google Goggles – I am yet to actually use this app for anything practical, but there is something to be said about the fun involved in taking pictures of things and see what Google finds as a result.
Google Voice – the ability to call from my Google Voice account on a whim gets built into my phone via this app. This is extremely useful when using the phone for the business line (which is a Google Voice number.) Pure awesome.
gReader – I still keep track of websites via RSS, and this little app allows me to keep plugged in to my Google Reader and updates the articles. This is a great for when I want to keep caught up on reading and there isn’t a PC around.
Hootsuite – just like the online website, I can manage and play with a number of the Twitter accounts I manage. Now if they’d only get Facebook integration built into the Android app, too…
Mojo NES – old school Nintendo goodness that plays classic NES games on my phone. I am using the free one and it seems to work fine.
RockPlayer – this lets me play DivX files on my phone. With the extreme prettiness of the screen’s resolution, this is VERY important… and it looks DAMN GOOD.
WordPress – how awesome is it that I can make posts like this from anywhere?
ScanLife - an app that scans bar codes and then looks them up on the Internet for price comparison. I see this getting a lot of use this Christmas while shopping.
Yes, I said there were three parts in my last post.
No, I haven’t had time to finish them.
Yes, I will post them soon.
Yes, I still need to write the story of our visit to have chicken and waffles in Atlanta.
Yes, I need to add my Dragon*Con posts thanks to recent rantings I read on LiveJournal.
No, I don’t know when the posts are coming… exactly.
Yes, I have watched more Doctor Who and have reviews in the works.
Yes, I got a snazzy new cell phone I intend to write about (along with the Android apps I am enjoying).
Yes, I am also working on posts about releasing my retro-LiveJournal posts.
Yes, Wasabi Anime will be appearing at Super Anime Day at Past Present Future Comics & Games in West Palm Beach, Florida.
Finally: YES, I will be at Anime Weekend Atlanta this coming weekend. Come and say hi (here’s the schedule) if you are nearby.
More (hopefully) soon!