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Cloud Workouts: Best Fitness Apps for iPhone & Android

Taking a break Much of what’s covered in our blog has to do with cloud hosting and the culture developing around it. We’ve explored the effect the strategy has had on medical research. We’ve also looked at how the IT approach is used in education. The Internet of Things, also known as Web 3.0, is a subject we’ve assessed in numerous articles as well. Since mobile apps are standardly stored and accessed through the cloud – both for cost and the functionality allowed by the its speed – we’ll highlight some of those programs too. Software running on our handheld devices isn’t just changing the way we approach our lives. In some cases, they’re making us healthier. Just as cloud-based medical research makes an impact on health by leading the way to cures for diseases, fitness applications help people structure their workouts and monitor their physical development. We hope this list comes just at the right time since it’s now a couple months past January 1st. Many people make New Year’s Resolutions – fully half of Americans, for example – but most of us are unsuccessful at keeping them.  In fact, according to psychologist Richard Wiseman, only 1 in 10 of us succeeds long-term. Since “getting in shape” is one of the most common resolutions, these apps can get those back on track who are backsliding after starting 2014 with a fitness commitment. Below are a total of 20 applications, 10 for Android and 10 for iPhone, that can help you with your fitness goals. Top 10 fitness apps for Android The website Heavy covered the top 10 fitness programs for Android in 2013. They are as follows:
  1. Runtastic Pedometer – Doctors recommend that each of us take at least 10,000 steps every single day, and many of us don’t always hit that limit. That’s the basic idea behind this pedometer environment. Keep in mind, it’ll only work if you have the phone on you at all times: that’s the only way it can track your steps.
  2. Calories Counter – MyFitnessPal – There are various calorie-counting systems out there, but this one is especially complex and uses our natural social needs for motivation. Calories Counter integrates with the My Fitness Pal website and its community message boards.
  3. Endomondo Sports Tracker PRO – This tool gets really great ratings for exercises related to logging distance – biking, running, etc.. You have access to various stats and diagrams, such as your heart rate and how fast you’re going.
  4. Lose It! – Obviously you want to both be concerned about the calories that are coming in and the extent to which you’re burning them. Lose It serves as a general fitness aid by focusing on diet and exercise. You can also participate in challenges with other users.
  5. Instant Heart Rate – Azumio – This application makes it simple to know your heart rate at any time. Just put your finger on the camera of your mobile device for 10 seconds, and it’ll be able to let you know your pulse.
  6. Nike+ Running – This app gives you all your running details, such as your speed and how far you’ve gone on an established route. You can even set it up to feed pep talks from friends through the system as you run.
  7. RunKeeper – GPS Track Run Walk – Utilize GPS to gauge your progress in real time. Drawing on your speed and distance data, it then ties to caloric output, letting you know if your workouts are adequately accounting for any heavy meals.
  8. MapMyRun GPS – This tool helps you generally organize and monitor your physical activity. Its sophisticated searchability makes it especially helpful: you can search workouts by type of activity, mileage, and other variables.
  9. Zombies, Run! – This choice is nothing like the other options. It’s more like a video game. As you exercise, a plot develops. If a zombie is after you, you are urged to run faster. You can also collect items to help you survive down the road.
  10. WebMD for Android – There’s nothing like visiting a doctor, but if you want a quick sense of what might be ailing you, this program has a Symptom Checker, organized by body part or system.
Top 10 fitness apps for iPhone Just as Heavy covered Android workout and health applications last year, Active.com compiled a similar list of iPhone programs as well. Here they are:
  1. Zombies, Run! – This solution is also available for iPhone, and due to its creativity, it’s easy to see why it would be selected for both lists. Plus, novelist Naomi Alderman helped develop its storyline.
  2. Couch-to-5K App – Well, this selection is a little biased. The creator is Active.com, so it’s understandable that it’d make their “best of” list. However, Couch-to-5K is legitimately interesting due to its laser-focus, working toward a 5K race.
  3. Obstacles XRT – Extreme Reality Training – This entry offers a highly outside-the-box environment, reminiscent of the zombies app. Break free from quicksand, make it beyond fences, and get to your destination.
  4. Kettlebell Training: The Basics – Robert Budd, an expert at the kettlebells, takes users step-by-step through a series of almost 2 dozen exercises.
  5. See Me Get Fit – Make use of an interesting, almost too-obvious approach to motivate you: selfies. You can watch yourself get in shape over time.
  6. BMI Calculator – Not everyone agrees this tool’s calculations should be trusted, but it’s worth a try. It gives you your body mass index (BMI) so can have a sense of how much fat you have in relation to total weight.
  7. Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker – Crash dieting can be a huge and dangerous mistake. However, if you want to get rid of some extra pounds quickly, this app can help you with its massive dietary database and almost 400 exercises.
  8. P90X – This choice really excels in the area of interactivity, both with other users and with a complex virtual environment. Interactivity can in turn be great for goal-setting and continually raising the bar.
  9. Pocket Yoga – Convenience is critical to keep your fitness level improving. Pocket Yoga helps you keep your practice going even when you’re travelling.
  10. Abs Workout –  Like the 5K program, this one is all about specificity. Over the course of 4 weeks, you strengthen and tone your abs. It is straightforward, directing you down a narrow, disciplined path.
Mobile apps are one of the greatest assets of our technological landscape. Fitness programs are especially beneficial because so many of us resolve each year to get into shape. Cloud virtual private servers (VPS’s) provide fast, scalable, and reliable platforms to deliver these valuable environments.  

Is Mobile Tech Making Us Anti-Social Butt Heads?

Mobile Tech Breeds Anti-Social Behavior

Last week, we attended Cloud Expo 2013 in Silicon Valley. For anyone who has ever attended a Cloud Expo, you know the event is made up of two major parts: a) show floor and b) keynote sessions. During keynote sessions, speakers from exhibiting companies speak to the crowd in attendance about the innovations within their company and why the market should take notice. While this is all well and good, this post is about the crowd. For us, the most telling aspect of every keynote session was not the speaker, it was what the crowd invariably did regardless of how excellent or thought provoking a keynote proved to be. That action: looking down at their smartphone or tablet to text, play games, surf the web, scroll Facebook walls etc. Think about this: the crowd in attendance paid money to come to the show and yet, while they are in attendance, they tune the show out in favor of smartphones, tablets and mobile devices. It led us to this question:

Is mobile tech making us anti-social butt heads?

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The SMAC Future of the Internet

To be connected, the Internet has the promise of global connection

The Internet is a funny thing. From the start of the Internet – military projects and all that – the Internet was meant to be a tool of mass communication. From it’s earliest days, the Internet was meant to open up the world to the masses by making the world a more inclusive place. To connect everything to everyone by making the world smaller. That was and still is the overall plan for the Internet. However over time a funny thing has happened – with the ever increasing ability of communications, the Internet as a whole hasn’t lived up to its promise of connecting everything to everyone, everywhere. Due to multiple obstacles, the limiting of information, firewalls and monetary issues, the Internet is still relativity in it’s infancy promise stage.

Well, with the advent of SMAC, the promise of everything to everyone, everywhere, is starting to take shape.

What is SMAC?

SMAC

Right off the bat, as SMAC isn’t a highly popularized term, SMAC stands for Social, Mobile, Analytics and Cloud. The promise is SMAC is to fully bring to realization what the original Internet intended – full connection. With that in mind the question becomes how is SMAC making good on the promise of full connection across the Internet? Let’s tackle it by going over the varying categories of SMAC. First, Social.

Social

The social element of SMAC is, on its head, pretty easy to describe. Social, i.e. large scale social media networks like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Linkedin, Reddit, Digg and StumbleUpon, serve as a direct call and response of active online users. The active online users – a connected network – have the ability to not only blog/chat about whatever they please, more importantly, they have the ability to change, in real time, the products/solutions/services of brands and companies they love. The true power of 140 characters isn’t saying I am alive, it’s changing the world around through mass social communication.

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