Tag Archives: app

No Job Left Undone with SmartSwapp

Times are tough and it’s hard to say if there will be any changes to that soon. People are working full-time hours making $500 in two weeks. This might be reasonable for a high school student living with their parents, but with the increasing costs of college tuitions, you need to start working when you’re born to save up enough. Otherwise, you’ll get destroyed by student loans and end up paying ten of thousands in interest before paying off those four years of college. It’s a struggle for nearly every one of the 99%.  

Rise and grind

Rise and grind

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TalkToChef: Personalized Cooking Tutorials

As you may have noticed, recently we gave the Hungry and Fit website a little makeover. We wanted to be cleaner, more straightforward, and appealing to the eyes. We evaluated what we had in place, what we should remove, and what we should add. That led us to pursue new partnerships. One such partnership is TalkToChef–a helpful tool for cooking at home. It could be used by aspiring chefs or by people simply trying to create a meal for the family. TalkToChef is a startup company with a big, eager goal–to help you cook what YOU want to cook within minutes. I don’t know how many times I’ve been in the middle of cooking or baking something when I am hopelessly looking through google to answer my cooking woes. With TalkToChef, all I would have to do is enter what I’m trying to cook, and I will be connected right then and there with a chef to help.

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Who is Team Botan? Cafe Go-Go App Review

The last thing the world needs is one more app like every other. How many times have you heard yourself saying “if I get one more Candy Crush invite I swear I’m going to…” Nevertheless, we can’t help but check the app store, see what’s new, what’s cool, and what’s fun. Today, there is a new kid on the block that is looking to make its own unique impact on the market. It’s bringing back the enjoyment factor, but instead of telling you about it from our point of view… here’s one of the founding members and a Producer of Team Botan, Scott Polhemus (part of our video game brain trust), in an EXCLUSIVE Hungry & Fit interview!

First, a brief word about the game. Cafe Go-Go is a brand new app/game where the user plays as a worker taking orders at a cafe. As the orders come in, the barista must press the corresponding pictures for the items in the proper order. The faster you put a complete and accurate order in, the more points you get. It’s a game that is all about reaction time, hand-eye coordination, and focusing

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Hungry: We downloaded Cafe Go-Go and played it for a bit. It’s a fun game that’s easy to pick up and play. What were you trying to achieve by creating this app?
 
Scott: Our hope was to produce an original game based on the classic, coin-op arcade games we grew up loving. We wanted it to have a charming, retro look — and for the gameplay to be simple & accessible so anyone could pick up and play while on-the-go (or killing time on a train or in line).
 
Hungry: What exactly makes Cafe Go-Go different from the million others apps on the market?
 
Scott: Well, for starters, we didn’t build it to fulfill some sort of licensing gimmick or “sequelitis” sort of situation. Simply, three of us came together and felt it’d be cool if we could put a game together. After a few months of crazed development, we actually succeeded and released Cafe Go-Go.
 
So, what makes it different? Well, sure, we want it to sell, because it would be amazing if we could do this full-time (we all work day jobs, and this was sort of a moonlit labor of love)…but, we weren’t too keen on the philosophy of “pump-out-n-profit” that a significant number of apps these days adhere to. So, we tried our best to create a game with a charming atmosphere, and a healthy dose of challenge tossed in. 
 
It’s our take on an age-old gaming concept, the ol’ time-based puzzler. We believe its worth & value are immediately apparent from its careful sprite-work to the featured SFX and music produced by our friend, Jack Vanoudenaren (better known as ABSRDST). Simply, that it’s a labor of love from three friends — and we hope the rest of the world shares in the fun.
 
Hungry: As Hungry & Fit, we’re always focused on the health benefits of activities. What does Cafe Go-Go contribute to a healthier lifestyle?
 
Scott: If you boot up a quick round of Cafe Go-Go right after waking, it’s a sure-fire way to get your brain going. Of course, no game can compete with the health benefits of going for a run outside, but if you can keep a round of Cafe Go-Go going for over 15 minutes, you’re sure to challenge your mental stamina, as well as your heart rate. Granted, I might just be an out-of-shape fatboy, but, I’ve played a couple rounds that lasted over an hour, and I’d managed to work up a sweat and profound thirst. That was probably the nerdiest sentence I’ve ever said.
 
Hungry: It seems like a good way to pass time while on a piece of cardio equipment. How much mental stimulation does it offer?
 
Scott: When you really start rolling, and string orders together in rapid succession, you can feel your concentration reaching higher levels, and before long your fingers work in tandem with the order commands your eyes perceive. Throw in the tip & time bonuses that float across the screen every so often, and you add a whole new layer of concentration and adaptability that challenges the mind.
 
Hungry: What can we expect next from the company that brought us Cafe Go-Go?
 
Scott: We’ve got a few projects in the tank currently. One won’t see the light of day until we (hopefully) secure serious funding. The other two, well, it’ll come down to what Team Botan’s brainchild (and programmer extraordinaire), Anthony Delia, feels like tackling first. He’s been storyboarding an idea recently, which I already believe should be our next baby.
 
Frankly, we just hope to make games with a fine blend of challenge & charm. 
The kind of games that’ll have you sometimes gritting your teeth, but always smiling.
 
Hungry: If Hungry & Fit decided to make an app, would Team Botan be up for the challenge?
 
Scott: Of course! But, you better find your way to the top of our Leader Boards for Cafe Go-Go! 
 
Right now, the score to beat is: 32,242,000
 
Think you can beat it?
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And there you have it! Team Botan is to the point and looking to bring something new without breaking your bank account! No tricks, no schemes… just fun from some guys that obviously do this out of a love for gaming, not profiting. Still, I’m sure they wouldn’t mind making some money to help fund their newest projects in development that Scott gave us a heads up into! You can check them out on Twitter or purchase the Cafe Go-Go app in the app store! 
 
And let us know what kind of app you’d want to see from Hungry & Fit? Exercise routines for different populations? Nutritional plans? Comment below! And as always..stay hungry and fit! 

An Easy Way to Switch-Up Your Workouts

I’ve found something exciting. Or rather, they found me. It’s a new app, released January of this year. An app that even Apple featured in one of my new favorite commercials (see below). What does this app do? Let’s first visit the topic it relates to: workout routines. We all have our routines, whether they focus on lifting, endurance, body weight, etc. I know, at least personally, that sometimes I’m not into my typical workout, that I get somewhat bored with it. This app is here to shake that boredom up. 

See that guy on the beach doing his step ups and push-ups? (Pretty sure that’s Santa Monica, by the way). That app is the Johnson & Johnson 7-Minute Workout app created by Chris Jordan. It’s an app that allows you to create more than 1,000 (yeah, ONE THOUSAND) variations for your workout. 36 exercises and 12 additional workouts too. As you may be able to tell, I’m pretty excited about this. I always like to shake up my workouts because if I get bored in my routine, it simply will not be a good workout. I will get distracted or not push myself. Then this app comes along. 

 

So many options!

So many options!

This is perfect for people who aren’t sure of what they want to do for their workout, want to shake it up, or need to do a home workout. Oh yeah, one of the highlights of this app is that it can be done anywhere. No need for a gym membership for this one. It’s useful for all levels of people regarding fitness. The customization is great for people who know exactly what they want. And for beginners or people not used to creating their own routines, each exercise is shown by video while you are doing it as well as audio instructions and tips. I find it incredibly helpful. And finally, another feature I appreciate, is an eye-appealing timer-like function. You’ll see a circle of red dots around the instructional video that counts down your time for that exercise. Perfect for counting down the seconds of when you can end your plank. 

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This app is all about working out “smart” and it is science-based. This means no “bro-science,” no fads, and no nonsense. It means you’ll be working out according to proper form, function, and efficiency. It means working out safely while improving your fitness in the way YOU want to. It gives coaching tips that helps you maintain that fitness into your lifestyle. I really appreciate that. I detest fitness fads and unsafe instruction. I’m all about playing it smart and safe to build up into a powerful fitness level. 

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You can download the app on your iPhone or Android. And the best part–IT’S FREE! No need to pay money to get the “premium” version or any monthly subscription. This is a free app that will guide you to wonderful workouts. I know that I will be using it each week to shake things up and test myself. I’m going to have lots of fun playing around with customization and seeing what kind of tough workout routines I can create. Let me know if you have any questions about the app. Download the Johnson & Johnson 7-Minute Workout app to stay hungry and fit!

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Fitfluential. All opinions are 100% ours (we actually love this app). 

 

HabitRPG: A Quest for Productivity

This is for you gamers out there or people who are looking for a new way to encourage productivity. I happen to be both. This is not necessarily just an app, it is so much more! Similar to CARROTit makes productivity more into a game, which is brilliant (for me, at least). You level up in CARROT, but HabitRPG takes it to a whole different level.

It originated as just a website, but it seems more like a program or an online gameYou make an account with HabitRPG and make your “avatar” aka your character or “you.” We’re talking about old-school pixelated graphics. It has the old-time feel to it, I like it. After all, this is a free service (there’s a subscribe option to support the developers), and these people are putting their own time into it. Once you are all set up with your Level 1 character, you are guided through a little tutorial. This just explains the basic functions and whatnot for you to be able to “play.”

How do you level up? Well, by being productive, of course! Let’s move on to the most important aspect of the program: the tasks. This where the productivity and efficiency come in, alongside the fun and questing. In order to gain levels, to gain gold, or cool items, you have to get stuff done! There are three types of productivity: habits, dailies, and to-dos.

habitrpg tasks

I’m the character on the left, my brother, who is in my party is shown on the right

Habits are every day things, as you would expect habits to be. These are things you can tick off multiple times a day. You might have “drink water” or “eat junk food” (which would drain your hitpoints). Dailies are a once-a-day tick-off like “exercise” or “take vitamins.” And finally, to-dos is obviously a to-do list. Each can have different difficulties which gains you more or less experience, gold, and items.

Those of you familiar with MMORPGs know about dailies. In this program, if you don’t complete all your “dailies” (things you should be doing every day OR every certain day that you set), then you lose hitpoints in your character. Nobody likes losing health! It really motivates me and drives me to do all those daily tasks and set the bar higher and higher. I love it! And as you level up, more and more becomes available to you like pets, mounts, and other items like equipment to give you buffs. Just like a real RPG!

Equipment

Equipment

There’s also a big “Social” aspect to the game. You can join several guilds (some that I am in include “Health Nuts,” “Mastering Buddha,” and “Pet Owners”), create challenges (that other people can join and get the tasks and dailies specific to that challenge such as learning languages, meditating, and so forth), and start your own party (aka a group). Right now I’m in a party with my brother, who is the one who introduced me to this awesome program.

Finally there are Rewards (which you see on the “Tasks” page) which are basically things you “purchase” with the gold that you have earned. Rewards can range from whatever you want. There are some pre-set ones like equipment you can buy and such like shield, sword, etc. Then there are also ones you create. So on mine, you can see “1 hr video games,” “buy something for yourself,” “take a bath” and so forth. Make the price sensible so that it makes sense with the reward you are receiving. So if I really want to play those video games, I better get some stuff done!

I would love for more of you to join us! It’s also a great support network if not a fun and motivating way of being productive. My user is “hungryandfit” and I encourage you to join HabitRPG! I give it a huge thumbs up so far, it’s made me floss every day and we know that’s a win! And as always…stay hungry and fit!

Techie Tuesday: the Waze App Review

Although we love our gadgets and gizmos, we don’t often write a post about them or review them. However, there are some that are exceptions to this and one of them is WazeI had downloaded this app about a year ago, but only recently started using it after my brother’s trip here. Waze is a travel/map app and it is incredibly useful and fun. 

We all have been through the frustration of Google Maps. Perhaps it led us in the wrong direction or forgot to tell us a turn. Hey, I’m a big supporter of Google Maps–more than most folk anyhow–but I’ve got to be honest, Waze has it beat. Let’s start with a little description so I can show you why it’s better than Google Maps. So you start Waze as a noob, an amateur with an avatar that has a pacifier. This is motivation to use the app more and more to gain points and discard that rookie-telling pacifier. For the avatar portion, once you get enough points, you can choose what “mood” you’re in which is basically your avatar. I’m pretty sure mine was “sleepy” yesterday (no surprise for a Monday, huh?). And there are leaders in each area in terms of points, so there’s always motivation to use it!

Thaaat's meeee

Thaaat’s meeee

So how do you get points? It’s pretty easy. You gain points simply by having the app on and driving. You can also gain additional points by reporting different things, which is getting to why Waze is so great. You have the ability to report hazards like stopped cars, accidents, weather, traffic, and even hidden police officers. Everybody works together in a community-like setting. As you are driving along and Waze is open on your phone or tablet, you can see all the hazards or traffic coming up on your route. This is really nice not only to be able to avoid it, but for safety reasons to. You can even see the other “Wazers” on the road which makes it feel even more like a community. I love that part. All working together to help one another.

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This app is also excellent at setting routes. First of all, you can input your “Home” and “Work” addresses so it’s easy to plug in. When you type in whatever address you are trying to get to, it will give you several routes, their mileage, length of route concerning time, and ETA. And for each route, it shows you all the “reports” aka the hazards, traffic, accidents, and so forth. In addition, along the route, if traffic is slowing down, it will show you the average speed at which traffic is flowing. Pretty neat.

Vroom vroom, night mode

Vroom vroom, night mode

To sum, this app has Google Maps beat with its sense of community and foresight with traffic and planning routes. Hungry and Fit gives Waze a big thumbs up. Use this smart traffic app to stay hungry and fit! 

  • Question of the Day: What travel app do you use?

BONUS KITTY PIC

 

Precious is all I can say

Precious is all I can say

iOS 7 Review

This is a personal review. It is not professional. Although I have a lot of experience with technology and cellular devices, I want to talk about this update as a “real” person.

I have never been happy with Apple operating system updates at first. iOS 6 grew on me but I always regretted updating. One of the major issues that I faced was a battery bug that resulted in my phone randomly turning off whenever it was under 40% charged. At that point, despite having battery power, it would not turn back on until it was plugged in again. When it was plugged back in the phone would have the same charge that it had when it shut off randomly. You can imagine how frustrating that must have been for a 4S in perfect condition.

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With that being said, I have had a Macbook since 2007 and it is still my only laptop. I broke the logic board when the computer fell off of my bed, but it is still fully functional with the exception of the built in speakers. I have never had a problem with any of those operating system upgrades although I can’t say that I certainly got leopard, snow leopard, lion or mountain lion yet (The purpose of this paragraph was to show that I don’t automatically hate all Apple operating system changes).

This is the point where I start to actually talk about iOS7 for the iPad and the iPhone. I currently have an iPhone 5 and a 4th Generation 64GB iPad. I updated the two at the same time and the update took nearly 15 minutes for each. I had them attached to a strong wifi signal and they were also plugged in at the time. I decided to not use them in order to hopefully speed up the process and it may or may not have worked.

Upon resetting the devices after the download and the installation, there was a setup that included basic questions such as: do you want to enable location settings, do you want to set up airdrop and iCloud, do you want to register with Apple, what language would you like to use, do you want to enable passcode restrictions, etc. Nothing too complicated but make sure you think about the passcode restrictions since it makes it much more difficult to quickly access features.

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Oh, quick side note, you NEED 3.1 GB of free space on your hard drive before you can start the download.

In Colorado, it seems as if talking and texting while driving is not illegal. This is a stupid law. It needs to be changed. Nevertheless, if you are driving and using your phone and now need to unlock it as well that may increase the risk of accident or mishap. Just a warning.

The layout is much smoother and more attractive, in my opinion. With that being said it does take longer to move from one screen to another. It may look smoother but it takes longer as a result. I haven’t timed it but it seems pretty obvious. That doesn’t mean that it’s a painfully slow process, I just notice the little things.

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You no longer need to swipe left in order to get to the screen to search your device. You can simply swipe down so that eliminates a pointless screen. If you pull the top menu down it is relatively similar but much less cluttered. If you pull the bottom up you receive a new menu that is quite clean and useful. My problem with that is now you can access the flashlight (you get a new FREE built-in flashlight! which is worse than the one I have always had), calculator, camera, and clock multiple ways. You can access the camera three different ways. It makes your device more cluttered! The nice part of that swipe up menu is that it gives you very easy access to changing the mode of your device. You can go into airplane, silent, locked, sleep, wifi, and bluetooth mode easily now.

Speaking of the camera, it has some new features and it laid out in a much more organized manner. It includes built-in filters and allows easy access to video, panorama, and more. Safari also presents an interesting interface when you have multiple tabs open. I think it is quite attractive and practical enough.

The only other practical change involves closing out your apps that are open. You can still double tap your home key on the bottom of your phone but now your screen is taken over so that you can swipe the apps upwards in order to close them.

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Other than this I have not found other practical changes that are worthy of me mentioning. A lot of the changes are just aesthetic, some work for me and some don’t. All in all I like iOS6 for my personal use on my iPhone but I prefer iOS7 on the iPad. I don’t think this new setup works for people who have very streamlined efficiently working phones that they use at work and in the gym and on the go. It is slower which is why I do not mind it on the iPad. If I could, I would go back to iOS6 for my iPhone and keep iOS7 on the iPad.

My recommendation for you is to find a friend that has the update and see if you like it first. I told Alana not to get it on her phone and she has not yet decided. Half the population loves it and half hates it. I’m sure people will get used to it but we all know the old saying, if it’s not broke, don’t fix it.

My FAVORITE part of the update pertains to a matter I have been bothering Apple about for years. The newsstand is a waste of space, especially since it is not collapsible and cannot be put into a folder. WELL NOW IT CAN! Technology is a complicated way that can or cannot help you stay hungry and fit!

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BONUS KITTY PIC

Kitty pile on Alana for Castle marathon!

Kitty pile on Alana for Castle marathon!