|By Shelly Palmer||
|April 11, 2013 02:20 PM EDT||
We’re more connected now than we ever have been before, and we’re only going to get more connected as we move into the future. According to Intel, at the beginning of 2012 there were approximately 2 billion people connected to the Internet. By 2015, Intel expects the number to be over 3 billion and, by 2020, the company says there will be 4 billion people connected to the Internet using its chips.
But who says that being connected means needing to work 24/7? Not me! While it’s great having e-mail access on my phone, letting me keep in touch in case Shelly needs something changed or done when I’m not at my computer, being connected to the internet and app stores at all times means I’m never bored because there’s always new games to try, buy and play.
If you’re looking for that perfect game to kill five minutes before a meeting or for an hour on your train ride home, here are some of my favorite games to have recently hit the iOS App Store.
- Temple Run 2 (iOS: Free) – This one sort of crept up on everyone. Part of my job is keeping up with all the tech news from all the web’s biggest sites, and no one had said anything about this until the day before it came out. It’s totally worth downloading. I mean, first of all, it’s free. And second of all, it’s even better than the first one (which of course you’ve played). There’s more things to do, it looks prettier and it’s more fun. Plus, it gave me something fun to do on Sunday during NFL commercial breaks. See if you can beat my high score (pictured below)!
- Super Hexagon (iOS: $2.99) – This game’s been on iOS for a while, but that doesn’t mean I love it any less. This is one of the most frustrating games I’ve ever played, and if you don’t play as many games as I do, it could be the most difficult one you’ll ever play. It’s also one of the most fun and rewarding. (It was my fifth-favorite game I played last year.) All you have to do is navigate a triangle through other shapes. That’s it. Just be warned that you’ll probably die after three seconds, if you’re even lucky or good enough to last that long. You’ll work your way up to nine or ten seconds, then eventually get to a minute and “beat” the level. You beat it? Great! Congratulations! Now beat the five modes far, far harder than it.
- Hundreds (iOS: $4.99) – Kotaku already said this was 2013’s Game of the Year. Granted, they did so when the year was only three days old, but still. This game is great. If you’re looking to show off your iPad’s multi-touch abilities, check this out. This is another game that’s deceptively difficult; you’re asked to make circles grow until their combined total hits 100. The first level is one circle with nothing around it. Hold down your finger and beat the level. Sounds easy, right? Not when you have spikes popping your circles, or when the circles are dancing all around. This made the five-hour flight to CES much more tolerable.
- The Room (iOS: $1.99) – This game is unlike the others on the list because it’s not meant to be played in bite-sized chunks. You’ll get the most out of this by sitting down one night, wearing headphones in a dark room. This game is amazing. You’re put in front of a chest with no instructions. Your ultimate goal is to get to the heart of the chest, by tinkering with it in any way you can. Not only is this a tough game with more than a few head-scratchers, but it also shows off much of what the iPad can do. New iPad owners: Playing this game will make you even more fully embrace your recent purchase. This was my fourth-favorite game from last year, and made one of my ten nights without power last fall (thanks, Sandy!) enjoyable.
- Polymer (iOS: $2.99) – This game is my most recent obsession. I put it down a few weeks ago, but still come back from time to time because it’s so much fun. It’s similar to a lot of other puzzle games, in a sense; there are four different modes that let you enjoy the game in whichever mode you enjoy. You’re given a board that’s a jumbled up mess of shape parts. The goal is to create shapes (or polymers) by sliding rows or columns around to re-arrange the parts and make as big of a shape as you can. Those four different modes I mentioned all make you play the same basic game, but with different end goals. The basic mode is a timed mode (either 2, 5 or 10 minutes) where you try to get as many points as you possibly can. There’s a “One Polymer” mode where you have as long as you need to create the biggest and highest-scoring shape you can. Bomb mode kicks things up a notch by adding in shapes with timers that tick down and must be cleared before they explode… otherwise, game over. Finally, Endless mode lets you play casually, just enjoying the shapes and not worrying about timers of any kind.
That’s my list. Let me know what your favorite games are in the comments below; I’m always looking for new bite-sized gaming addictions!
Too often with compelling new technologies market participants become overly enamored with that attractiveness of the technology and neglect underlying business drivers. This tendency, what some call the “newest shiny object syndrome,” is understandable given that virtually all of us are heavily engaged in technology. But it is also mistaken. Without concrete business cases driving its deployment, IoT, like many other technologies before it, will fade into obscurity.
Aug. 28, 2015 06:00 PM EDT Reads: 293
With the proliferation of connected devices underpinning new Internet of Things systems, Brandon Schulz, Director of Luxoft IoT – Retail, will be looking at the transformation of the retail customer experience in brick and mortar stores in his session at @ThingsExpo. Questions he will address include: Will beacons drop to the wayside like QR codes, or be a proximity-based profit driver? How will the customer experience change in stores of all types when everything can be instrumented and analyzed? As an area of investment, how might a retail company move towards an innovation methodolo...
Aug. 28, 2015 05:30 PM EDT Reads: 394
Consumer IoT applications provide data about the user that just doesn’t exist in traditional PC or mobile web applications. This rich data, or “context,” enables the highly personalized consumer experiences that characterize many consumer IoT apps. This same data is also providing brands with unprecedented insight into how their connected products are being used, while, at the same time, powering highly targeted engagement and marketing opportunities. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Nathan Treloar, President and COO of Bebaio, will explore examples of brands transforming their businesses by t...
Aug. 28, 2015 03:45 PM EDT Reads: 164
SYS-CON Events announced today that HPM Networks will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For 20 years, HPM Networks has been integrating technology solutions that solve complex business challenges. HPM Networks has designed solutions for both SMB and enterprise customers throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
Aug. 28, 2015 03:30 PM EDT Reads: 808
As more and more data is generated from a variety of connected devices, the need to get insights from this data and predict future behavior and trends is increasingly essential for businesses. Real-time stream processing is needed in a variety of different industries such as Manufacturing, Oil and Gas, Automobile, Finance, Online Retail, Smart Grids, and Healthcare. Azure Stream Analytics is a fully managed distributed stream computation service that provides low latency, scalable processing of streaming data in the cloud with an enterprise grade SLA. It features built-in integration with Azur...
Aug. 28, 2015 02:15 PM EDT Reads: 129
A producer of the first smartphones and tablets, presenter Lee M. Williams will talk about how he is now applying his experience in mobile technology to the design and development of the next generation of Environmental and Sustainability Services at ETwater. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Lee Williams, COO of ETwater, will talk about how he is now applying his experience in mobile technology to the design and development of the next generation of Environmental and Sustainability Services at ETwater.
Aug. 28, 2015 02:00 PM EDT
SYS-CON Events announced today that Micron Technology, Inc., a global leader in advanced semiconductor systems, will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Micron’s broad portfolio of high-performance memory technologies – including DRAM, NAND and NOR Flash – is the basis for solid state drives, modules, multichip packages and other system solutions. Backed by more than 35 years of technology leadership, Micron's memory solutions enable the world's most innovative computing, consumer,...
Aug. 28, 2015 12:30 PM EDT Reads: 141
SYS-CON Events announced today that Pythian, a global IT services company specializing in helping companies leverage disruptive technologies to optimize revenue-generating systems, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Founded in 1997, Pythian is a global IT services company that helps companies compete by adopting disruptive technologies such as cloud, Big Data, advanced analytics, and DevOps to advance innovation and increase agility. Specializing in designing, imple...
Aug. 28, 2015 12:00 PM EDT Reads: 183
While many app developers are comfortable building apps for the smartphone, there is a whole new world out there. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Narayan Sainaney, Co-founder and CTO of Mojio, will discuss how the business case for connected car apps is growing and, with open platform companies having already done the heavy lifting, there really is no barrier to entry.
Aug. 28, 2015 11:30 AM EDT
As more intelligent IoT applications shift into gear, they’re merging into the ever-increasing traffic flow of the Internet. It won’t be long before we experience bottlenecks, as IoT traffic peaks during rush hours. Organizations that are unprepared will find themselves by the side of the road unable to cross back into the fast lane. As billions of new devices begin to communicate and exchange data – will your infrastructure be scalable enough to handle this new interconnected world?
Aug. 28, 2015 10:00 AM EDT
WebRTC has had a real tough three or four years, and so have those working with it. Only a few short years ago, the development world were excited about WebRTC and proclaiming how awesome it was. You might have played with the technology a couple of years ago, only to find the extra infrastructure requirements were painful to implement and poorly documented. This probably left a bitter taste in your mouth, especially when things went wrong.
Aug. 28, 2015 07:45 AM EDT Reads: 389
Through WebRTC, audio and video communications are being embedded more easily than ever into applications, helping carriers, enterprises and independent software vendors deliver greater functionality to their end users. With today’s business world increasingly focused on outcomes, users’ growing calls for ease of use, and businesses craving smarter, tighter integration, what’s the next step in delivering a richer, more immersive experience? That richer, more fully integrated experience comes about through a Communications Platform as a Service which allows for messaging, screen sharing, video...
Aug. 28, 2015 07:30 AM EDT Reads: 547
SYS-CON Events announced today that IceWarp will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. IceWarp, the leader of cloud and on-premise messaging, delivers secured email, chat, documents, conferencing and collaboration to today's mobile workforce, all in one unified interface
Aug. 28, 2015 03:00 AM EDT Reads: 344
The Internet of Things (IoT) is about the digitization of physical assets including sensors, devices, machines, gateways, and the network. It creates possibilities for significant value creation and new revenue generating business models via data democratization and ubiquitous analytics across IoT networks. The explosion of data in all forms in IoT requires a more robust and broader lens in order to enable smarter timely actions and better outcomes. Business operations become the key driver of IoT applications and projects. Business operations, IT, and data scientists need advanced analytics t...
Aug. 28, 2015 12:30 AM EDT Reads: 340
Akana has announced the availability of the new Akana Healthcare Solution. The API-driven solution helps healthcare organizations accelerate their transition to being secure, digitally interoperable businesses. It leverages the Health Level Seven International Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (HL7 FHIR) standard to enable broader business use of medical data. Akana developed the Healthcare Solution in response to healthcare businesses that want to increase electronic, multi-device access to health records while reducing operating costs and complying with government regulations.
Aug. 26, 2015 07:00 AM EDT
For IoT to grow as quickly as analyst firms’ project, a lot is going to fall on developers to quickly bring applications to market. But the lack of a standard development platform threatens to slow growth and make application development more time consuming and costly, much like we’ve seen in the mobile space. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mike Weiner, Product Manager of the Omega DevCloud with KORE Telematics Inc., discussed the evolving requirements for developers as IoT matures and conducted a live demonstration of how quickly application development can happen when the need to comply wit...
Aug. 2, 2015 11:15 AM EDT Reads: 541
The Internet of Everything (IoE) brings together people, process, data and things to make networked connections more relevant and valuable than ever before – transforming information into knowledge and knowledge into wisdom. IoE creates new capabilities, richer experiences, and unprecedented opportunities to improve business and government operations, decision making and mission support capabilities.
Aug. 1, 2015 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 470
Explosive growth in connected devices. Enormous amounts of data for collection and analysis. Critical use of data for split-second decision making and actionable information. All three are factors in making the Internet of Things a reality. Yet, any one factor would have an IT organization pondering its infrastructure strategy. How should your organization enhance its IT framework to enable an Internet of Things implementation? In his session at @ThingsExpo, James Kirkland, Red Hat's Chief Architect for the Internet of Things and Intelligent Systems, described how to revolutionize your archit...
Jul. 30, 2015 07:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,558
MuleSoft has announced the findings of its 2015 Connectivity Benchmark Report on the adoption and business impact of APIs. The findings suggest traditional businesses are quickly evolving into "composable enterprises" built out of hundreds of connected software services, applications and devices. Most are embracing the Internet of Things (IoT) and microservices technologies like Docker. A majority are integrating wearables, like smart watches, and more than half plan to generate revenue with APIs within the next year.
Jul. 30, 2015 02:30 PM EDT Reads: 271
Growth hacking is common for startups to make unheard-of progress in building their business. Career Hacks can help Geek Girls and those who support them (yes, that's you too, Dad!) to excel in this typically male-dominated world. Get ready to learn the facts: Is there a bias against women in the tech / developer communities? Why are women 50% of the workforce, but hold only 24% of the STEM or IT positions? Some beginnings of what to do about it! In her Opening Keynote at 16th Cloud Expo, Sandy Carter, IBM General Manager Cloud Ecosystem and Developers, and a Social Business Evangelist, d...
Jul. 30, 2015 12:00 PM EDT Reads: 2,218