Check out this interview with DoubleTree Hotels global head John Greenleaf about how DoubleTree is using contests and sharing around photos and videos uploaded by their customers, tied to specific locations.
Abstainer, noun: A weak person who yields to the temptation of denying himself a pleasure.
So wrote Ambrose Bierce (also known as Bitter Bierce) in his cynical look on life, The Devil’s Dictionary. And let’s face it, Ambrose probably has it right as we all like a little gamble now and then to liven things up.
However, you no longer have to head over to a casino to get your gamble on because your mobile phone probably offers more gambling action than the mighty Bellagio.
So just how is mobile gambling getting ready to take over the world? Read on to find out…
Try Before You Buy
Perhaps one of the most interesting elements of casino and poker apps is the fact that you can play for free. Yes, you get to enjoy all the casino games without any of the risk, making them…well…fun.
However, it won’t take long before you wish your winning streak was happening with a real money game and the boasts of being rich on play money will become empty. However, it is great for refining your game play and sharpening your skills. You can then take your new strategies to real money play on a casino or mobile hold’em website and put them to the test.
Welcome Bonuses Are Free Money
Another highly attractive feature of mobile gambling apps is that casinos and poker sites actually give you free money to play with. And they do it just for signing up.
Well, OK, you have to actually deposit some money there – and you have to do some gambling. The bonuses are then unlocked depending on how much you play. It’s rather like getting achievements or trophies in other games – except these reward you with actual cash.
Mobile Gaming Offers Fast Access
Having casino and poker games on your mobile allows you to jump straight into the action wherever you are. Online casinos and poker rooms have responded to this by offering games that require no waiting times to keep mobile players in the heart of the action.
This means that if you have a few minutes spare you can always spin some slots reels, or play a few hands of poker.
Not All Poker and Casino Apps Are the Same
Poker sites and online casino do vary in their offerings. While many of the games they offer are quite similar, the bonuses and promotions the sites give out can be quite different. So it is worth shopping around and checking out some comparison sites (and reading a few reviews) to get a feel for who is offering the best.
Poker players should also be aware that the ability to find opponents is directly related to the popularity of a site. The more popular a poker room is, the more people play there, and the fuller the tables are. Bear that in mind when signing up.
A Final Word of Warning
Do remember that online gambling is illegal in some countries and some US states. Check out a specialized website to make sure you are playing within the law.
Also, don’t gamble with money you cannot afford to lose. Gambling is a bit of fun – so keep it that way. If your ability to pay the rent, or eat, depends on the spin of a roulette wheel then you are doing something wrong.
Now, with that said, don’t be a fuddy-duddy abstainer. Get out there and live a little!
Bitcoins have been in the news quite a bit lately, as the trading value of this new virtual currency has been fluctuating like crazy over the past weeks.
The topic got even more attention when we learned that Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss had amassed a rather large Bitcoin position.
The video above provides an excellent primer on the topic of Bitcoins, along with the article linked above. It will be interesting to see whether online retailers or marketplaces started accepting this virtual currency.
Mark Zuckerberg has announced the new Facebook phone as you can see in the video above. The phone will be based on Android but it will be laid out differently with the home page of the phone being devoted to people rather than apps.
Let’s see if this takes off. Not everyone wants the world to see who is on their Facebook “favorites” list on their phone home page. I can see plenty of drama with girlfriends, etc.
Kristen Bell has become quite a star, and she’s getting plenty of notoriety for her edgy role in “House of Lies” on Showtime. This photo from her Maxim shoot gives you an idea of how good she can look!
Now her star power is being put to use in connection with a very successful Kickstarter campaign to create a Veronica Mars movie. The campaign has raised more than $1 million in a little more than 4 hours. Kickstarter has become an incredible tool for raising money online, and with Hollywood projects featuring proven stars it’s not too surprising that something like this would be very successful.
Watch the video below for more information on this successful campaign.
I have to admit that I finally saw this promo video today, but it now appears that Google Glass will cost less than $1,500, so expect to see these things everywhere. It’s a pretty fair price for what looks like a revolutionary gadget. I think Steve Jobs would be proud, and of course pissed that Apple didn’t come up with this.
This is a pretty fascinating story about a pedestrian bridge built in Rotterdam through crowdfunding when the city couldn’t come up with the money.
There is tremendous potential with using apps and connectivity to improve health care. We can now accomplish incredible things using today’s technology, but there will be limits.
Here’s an article about how four new apps for skin care fared when tested to identify melanoma. Three of the four had very poor ratings, but the reason is very interesting.
The key here is that software and machines can only take us so far, at least with today’s technology. Apps like this work best when there is a human component. I suspect that the machine can handle the very easy cases, but then we need an expert to make the tough calls.
So get excited, but stay wary when you hear some of these claims.
Imaging software changed photography processing. A person uses the software to create the ideas and artistic insights that they have gleaned. It begins with choosing an interesting image.
Effects for all Images
Take time to really look at an image before editing. What does the image say? How would image editing enhance it? High quality, engaging image creation often happens with basic techniques used skillfully. When you take the time to hone these techniques, it will show in your images.
Images often have two issues due to the photographic process itself and the phenomena is called noise filtering. Dots of light occur in the dark areas and points of dark occur in the light areas of an image. Color noise is splotches of translucent color scattered across an image like the sheen of oil on a water puddle. Learn how to edit images by filtering out the noise first.
Two: Capture the Strays
Three: Cut and Focus
Cropping allows one to focus on the most interesting aspects of the image. It becomes even more provocative or engaging to look at. It removes the distractions.
Four: Time to Color
Global enhancement makes changes in the color tones of the image. Changing the colors creates an emphasis or different interpretation. Contrast and gradient in color evoke the most emotions. Changing the color quality either in the whole image or a part of the image can radically change the photo’s look or appeal. Imaging software allows selective coloring and deepening or lightening of color depth.
Five: Peek-a-Boo Editing
Some images need more or the artist wants to do something innovative. Digital processing allows experimentation with its non destructive editing feature through its adjustment layers. Doing edits in layers allows maximum creativity since a person can try a technique, check, and easily return to the original image if not acceptable.The feature allows removal of unwanted elements in a photo.
Six: Manipulating for Mood
A graph called a histogram displays all the tonal qualities of light in an image. Knowing the range of lights and dark gives information on the composition and balance. The vertical axis gives the count of pixels, and the horizontal axis gives level of light. Manipulating the histogram can give a desired effect in contrast or depict a specific mood.
Seven: Many Photos Made Into One
Merging and slicing allows a montage of several images. Each photographic piece can have a special technique applied or each piece can have color adjustment to create a whole image.
Creating special effects by learning basic tools put creativity in the hands of a human. Playful manipulation of images puts a personal stamp and voice on the work making for true artistic expression.
We’re taking a trip around the web to find sites with informative and entertaining app reviews. With the explosion of smartphones and social media, apps are now everywhere, and younger kids view them as ubiquitous as television. For the rest of us, it’s amazing how one app can make our life easier and completely change the way we’ve done something for years. Other are just fun as hell. We’re flooded with them however, so it’s always nice to get tips from experts around the web.
Bullz-Eye App of the Week
ABC News Technology Review