Foster’s Weekly Guide To Apps, Tech & Programs You Should Know About

By: (Contributing Editor)


With the start of 2011 upon us, I thought one of the ways I could help MRT Subscribers to start off the , is to start a .  One that would help you to find the Apps, Tech & Programs that are worth your time and/or money (but really focusing more on saving you money).  Sure, you like, I mean love (Jenna works so hard, so it had better be love, hint, hint) the giveaways, but for this guide I wanted to give you something everyone could use or tell to their family and friends for them to use (not just our lucky winners).  I may even let my Daughter write about her favorites Apps from time to time and those her friends like, or “can’t live without”.  You never know when you need advice on an app or tech for the teenager in your life.  Plus, a great thing is all of you can comment below and email me with your free or cheap Apps and Tech that you too can’t live without so I can pass them on to everyone else in future installments.

So now that you may have your new iPod, or fresh from the holidays (Angry Birds, Mega Jump and Words With Friends will be covered next week) I wanted to bring you an App I use almost daily and is not a game.



 


The Logitech TouchMouse App

This free App from Logitech is just as it sounds.  It turns your touch device (iPad, touch or phone) into a WiFi-linked wireless TrackPad (Mouse) and Keyboard.  Use this mouse all over your house!  Connecting over Wi-Fi and not Bluetooth for example, lets you be anywhere in your house or connect to any Mac or PC in any room as long as it is on your Wi-Fi Network.  Perfect for those out there who have a PC connected to a TV or for my case, a larger monitor plugged into my laptop for viewing Netflix streaming to my front room.  I will get more into that in a minute.



The App does need one bit of software installed on the device you want to connect to, but that is also free.  It is needed to enable the App to find the PC or Mac and communicate with it.  It was simple to set up and worked on the first try for me so I would expect it to be similar for you.


The Touchpad - Vertical View

The Touchpad - Horizontal View





So you installed the free software and downloaded the App from the Store, now what?  Well, now you can sit back on your couch and control your next Netflix movie.  Then, say you are sitting away from your computer and wanted to type a quick entry for Twitter/FaceBook or search YouTube for a musician who just popped into your head.  Launch the App and Pick the server you set up for that computer or enter the IP address.  That simple! Now you have control over your mouse to move it to the space you want to type.  Tap it to select the space and then tap the Keyboard icon so now you can type right from your hands.  You also get to see a few seconds of what you just typed so you don’t have to keep looking up or need supervision to see the monitor across the room as you type.


The Touchpad with Keypad

Touchpad with Keypad Text


Here are a couple of Pros and Cons that might help you decide if you will get as much use out of this app as I do.

Pros: Starting and Pausing Netflix, YouTube and some general web surfing and typing on a laptop or computer that is sitting on a desk or connected to a large TV that is away from you, and doing so while you are on the couch can be fun and easy.  Similar to using the remote controls for your TV.  Even easier if you have used a touch pad on a laptop already.

Cons: I have noticed when dragging my finger across to move the mouse, there are times at the end of the swipe when I lift my finger as in to swipe again, what results is the same as the act of clicking the mouse button.  Wherever the mouse is at the time when I lift my finger is sometimes selected or clicked.  Not a big issue but can be a little frustrating at times if you try to use it as a mouse for long periods of time.

My Reality Verdict: If you are sitting in front of your computer, this will not replace your mouse or touchpad if, say your laptop already has one.  What I call a minor glitch is still enough to keep you from using it for long periods of time.  Still, if you watch a lot of Netflix or want to do some light YouTube surfing from your couch then you should get this App.  If you have a computer attached to your TV or a large Monitor and want a small keyboard and mouse to control it then get this App.  If you only use your computer when seated next to it or only use your laptop while it is actually on your lap then you may not have a need for this.  For free, you may still want to get it just to play with it or mess with your friends by controlling the mouse while they are on the computer and you are in another room.


Most important is for you to comment and let me know if you want to see more posts like this and give us any you think are worth sharing.  There might even be a few surprise giveaways for those that comment with the best helpful or fun item for me to share… who knows!  And don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and comment on Facebook as well!  Those entries count!


For more information: Logitech


has written 26 posts on My Reality Tech


A single Father, Likes all kinds of music from A to Z, Heart beats to the beat of a Geek's drum.


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  • http://twitter.com/TonyN13 Tony N

    Great stuff Foster! Always good to hear about technology that is universally accessible!

  • Annette

    Great! I look forward to more of these articles. It’s easy to find the top 25 apps, but I know there has to be more cool stuff I’m just not finding cuz it’s buried too deep and maybe the devs don’t have the money to promote it. So, thanks! Great idea!

  • Anonymous

    Now this is helpful! AND it was fairly easy to understand too!
    I dont have a smartphone, and the word ‘apps’ just sends me into a daze, so this is gonna be super helpful to learn about.
    I like this mouse thingy-TY!

  • Treetrout1

    Thank you for this article – I never knew such an app even existed. Easy instructions – again thanks. I would love to see san article on must have apps for the blackberry.
    Deborah Curran @treetrout1

  • http://www.myrealitytech.com Jenna Gonzalez

    I love this series. I think you’re on to something good here Foster. keep up the good work!

  • http://www.thenerdynurse.com The Nerdy Nurse

    I always enjoy hearing about invididual experiences with certain apps. If someone takes the time to write about it, it usually something worth getting, so thank you foster for taking your time to write this up.

  • http://twitter.com/jaxpugh Jackson Pugh

    MOAR!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_UKMJ3CZHNRG5YB5WBARM5ECIDE Christopher

    Enough with the reading, I need to try this out myself!!
    Without this post, I will never come across this unusual app ()i keep hearing about AngryBird()I need to try that out too() Im so behind :P

  • http://twitter.com/Songbirdeeee Song

    Awesome, thanks for sharing. I gotta look into this too now. :)

  • http://twitter.com/OnFostersMind On Foster’s Mind

    Never heard of HippoRemote, so I looked it up. There is a lite version and a 4.99 pro version. Pro gives you premade profiles and lots of customization. So the Pro sounds cool, but to compare free to free, at least Logitech is a name brand I know and trust. My mouse, speakers and webcam are all from them and yes I bought them all, no paying me for pushing them. If you have the money to spend HippoRemote may be worth a try. For me I try to focus on free or real cheap (like 99 cents) But Thanks Dave01568 for the comment

  • David Ferrandino

    Hey Scott thanks for letting us in on a great and useful app.I gave it a try and I love it because it’s simple to use.

  • David Ferrandino

    Hey Scott thanks for letting us in on a great and useful app.I gave it a try and I love it because it’s simple to use.

  • David Ferrandino

    Your right free is free. Logitech’s touch mouse is actually a great app. I gave it a try and it’s a keeper

  • David Ferrandino

    Your right free is free. Logitech’s touch mouse is actually a great app. I gave it a try and it’s a keeper

  • David Ferrandino

    Your right free is free. Logitech’s touch mouse is actually a great app. I gave it a try and it’s a keeper