Well, Apple's future is getting close to becoming clear as the date for WWDC 2014 has finally been let loose. Looks like some tech journalists are going to be revamping any early summer vacation plans. Meanwhile, it feels like it's been so long since Microsoft had a hit that this week's news of how well Office for iPad did can't help but be a shot in the arm. Plus games, leaks, updates and new stuff all in this week's hottest news.
Despite a plethora of fun and colorful interactive elements and engaging animations, Incredible Numbers isn't a dumbed-down app for the digital generation. Rather, Professor Ian Stewart uses the iPad's boundless teaching tools to take the mystery out of some of mathematics' most difficult concepts, including factorials, Fibonacci numbers, and heptadecagons. An attractive menu of eight circles—plus a bonus section dedicated to brainteasers—guides you to your chosen lesson, but the simple one-word headings hardly prepare you for the wealth of information inside.
One of the challenges facing educational game developers is how to strike a balance between lessons and fun. Too much teaching, and the game ceases to keep a child’s attention; too little, and it becomes just another game. That’s one of the reasons Slice Fractions is so great: it has mastered teaching kids about fractional math without having overt lessons to do so. Slice Fractions tasks players with clearing a path for a woolly mammoth to get from one side of the screen to another.
You wouldn't know it from the screenshots – what with that clean, minimal design and little faces on the number tiles – but behind Threes!' delightfully cheery exterior lays a complex and calculated puzzle core. Its number-blending mechanics are simple on the surface and incredibly easy to pick up, yet careless play is quickly punished and low scores prove inevitable without constant consideration for each and every move made on the board. Success is often elusive in Threes!, yet seeking it has quickly become our favorite new single-minded pursuit.
It’s the week of updates and shutdowns, of explosions and insomnia. In short, it’s another week of the biggest news stories from the writer of Mac|Life, getting you up to date with everything you ever might have missed that you shouldn’t have. So without further ado….
It’s entirely possible to overlook Even Up. In an app marketplace hellbent on grabbing your attention with busy free-to-play arcade distractions and Helvetica-and-clean-lines brainteasers, Even Up is so unassuming you might mistake it for a simplified Sudoku board. Seemingly taking its design cues from picture slider puzzles, solving each grid requires combining all numbered tiles on top of each other in sequential order until the screen is clear. You can push any numbered tile to a matching one on the grid as long as its path is clear – from there the combined tile’s number will be one higher than whatever it was originally.
On the heels of announcing updates to the iLife apps across both Mac and iOS platforms, Apple's Eddy Cue moved to to discuss the future of iWork, including the addition of collaboration for iWork in the Cloud.
Owners of Microsoft Windows systems are quite familiar with the dreaded "blue screen of death" (BSOD) on their PCs, but have you ever seen it on a smartphone? The swanky new iPhone 5s may be resurrecting that old menace.
Unless you've been living in a cave somewhere, you're probably aware that Apple will release iOS 7 sometime today -- but you can already get a sneak peek at what it will be like to use by visiting iCloud.com.