Tag Archives: app

Dayzipping: exploring the real world one adventure at a time

11th January 2012

I’m an avid outdoors fan, and there is no way I’d rather spend my weekends than hiking, running trails, or exploring the backroads beyond 285. Finding somewhere new however, is not always the easiest of tasks, and let’s just say the people who manage the outdoors spaces I love aren’t typically whiz kids when it comes to SEO, easy to use websites or social presences.

Yesterday while reading a blog post on local Atlanta startups, I stumbled across a company I had not heard of before and within the last 24 hours, it may be my new favorite app on the market.

Dayzipping allows users to select a city and preview a selection of days trips within their area to sort by various categories such as distance, popularity, price or theme.

Let’s compare dayzipping to Scoutmob, but with deals and adventures to take you someplace to burn all of those calories you just consumed at 50% off.

Currently available as a website and Andriod app (+1 for finding something my Apple lovers can’t have just yet), dayzipping is an easy to use experience to stumble across some of your areas most well hidden treasures, all in one place.

I can’t wait to get out explore, starting with this trip this weekend.

How do you discover things to do around your area? What are your favorite Atlanta destinations on the cheap?

Visual Search Apps Offering Real Life Solutions

18th May 2011

If you know anything about me, you might know that I’m obsessed with anything Google and that that company pretty much runs my life. A few updates to two of my favorite Google apps are now making my life on the go easier as well.

The Google Shopper app, similar to other apps on the Market such as the Amazon app  allows users to easily compare product prices and make simplified purchasing decisions in-aisle. I found myself using this app often while Christmas shopping this past year, comparing product reviews, prices, etc. all while in store.

Google Shopper app now allows users to employ visual search to identify products. By scanning a barcode, or even the product itself, users are given information such as price, reviews and places to buy. After a recent scan of a DVD, I was even more impressed to see a link to a YouTube trailer of the movie right in the interface. Shopping made simple.

Not to leave visual search to shopping, the  Google Goggles app has been a favorite of mine for quite some time. The basic premise is to perform a Google search through a photo scan. Examples of items that work best include products, logos and even paintings hanging in a museum. However, the most recent update to this app really catches my  heart, translation. Simply scan any foreign text and the app will utilize Google Translate to give feedback into the desired language.

Though I don’t use these visual search apps as often as I should, this could be the next step to connecting our digital and real world experiences. As much as I love QR codes, I would much rather like to scan a photo, ad or product directly to be rewarded than scan a group of boxes. What do you think? Have you been satisfied with the accuracy of visual search apps so far? Do you think apps like these could ultimately replace our use of QR codes?

PS…if these examples didn’t win you over, this one from a few months back should do the trick. Yes, visual search can solve “real life” problems as well.

SXSW: Lessons Learned

17th March 2011

To say SXSW was a whirlwind would be an understatement. On the plane, my colleagues and I met someone who told us the weekend would be very similar to Inception. As soon as we stepped off the plane, picked up our badges, headed to 6th St., and so on, we would enter a level further down into what would be a non-stop weekend.

He couldn’t have been more correct. By day two I had lost track of day, time and even seemed to have forgotten how bad my feet hurt from all of the walking we had done.

However, I don’t think I’ve ever had a more rewarding experience in such a short period of time. From the moment we arrived in Austin until we landed in Atlanta Tuesday night, we absorbed information, met amazing people and experienced some of the best Austin had to offer.

In retrospect, below are a few of the lessons learned from this great city.

More than a conference. There are a lot of REALLY smart people speaking at SXSW. The trouble is, there are a LOT of really smart people speaking at SXSW. Making decisions on which panel to see and getting there far enough in advance to get in was tough. I didn’t get to see nearly as many as I would have wished, but I did get to hear from some really great people as well such a Dennis Crowley, Jason Calacanis and Andrew Bosworth to name a few.

Digital reality. There were more great digital activations from brands that I could count, everywhere we looked someone was doing something cool, insightful or just plain fun. Photo and video booths seemed to be a big trend this year, but a few really set themselves apart in simple ways. SoBe for instance, hosted an outdoor bar with a virtual photo booth where you could dress yourself up on screen and send a video message. Once it was complete, it revealed a QR code to scan and send your video to friends. Easy.

Who needs sleep. We went non-stop for at least 17 hours each day. No hotel stops, no naps, not even sitting for lunch sometimes (but with so many delicious food trucks, who would want to?). It was exhausting, but with so much going on around us, it was exactly how we wanted to experience SXSW.

Party school. There are no shortage of sponsored parties at SXSW. However, that didn’t mean our nights out weren’t informative. I learned more from seeing what other brands and agencies had put together and spending my nights meeting new and interesting people than I often did at any daytime panel.

Looking to the future. Perhaps the best part of SXSW had to be the general excitement and buzz about everything new and groundbreaking happening in the interactive space. From activations like the GE Solar Powered Carousel to new apps like Hashable and GroupMe, the momentum was endless.

In all, Austin was far more than a few days in a new city, but refreshing and a reminder as to why I love what I do. I cannot wait to see how this week transforms how we all interact with technology in 2011.