Apps for chilling out during the summer
When summer first comes, it teases us with warm days and cool breezes. But by the middle of the season, it is so hot we can barely think straight let alone get to work without sweating through our freshly cleaned white work shirt.
While clinical-strength deodorant can certainly help, some sweltering summer days we just want to take the day off and find a clever way to cool down. Here are some iPhone apps we suggest to help you assess your own sweaty summer situation.
When I was a teenager, I wrote down what I wore every day on my fashion calendar so I would not wear the same outfit twice in a month. These days, you can snap a quick photo of your daily fashion choices and save them in the free Cloth app for iPhone. The savvy function of the Cloth app is that you can tag your outfit according to the weather conditions. The weather function is an in-app upgrade of 99 cents, and it allows you to classify your outfits by hot, warm, chilly, freezing, rain or snow so you are never without choices, no matter what the weather may be.
Skip the beach and head to the spa, silly! I enjoy a good pool day from 72 to 87 degrees. Anything over that and I am headed for the air-conditioning. Use the free Spa Wanderlust iPhone app to locate the perfect spa and type of massage best for you.
Seamless Food, delivery and takeout
(iPhone, iPod Touch; free)
I always wondered why people grill more in the summer than in the winter. Creating a fire to cook with a gas grill seems handier on a freezing winter night than a 100-degree summer day. Forget the grill and order-in with the free Seamless app for iPhone the next time the thermometer goes sky high.
(iPhone, iPod Touch; free)
Grab your friends and go on a mission to locate the tastiest margarita in town! Document your trip with the free Mission: Margarita app for iPhone. This thirsty app is filled with taster feedback on margaritas around the world, recipes and how-to videos.
(iPhone, iPod Touch; 99 cents)
And if all you really want to do on a sweltering summer day is jump into the nearest large body of water, then download the Beach Finder app for iPhone. It will help you locate the closest beach to you and navigate there as quickly as possible.
Reports from Appolicious.com and Tribune Media Services were used in this compilation.
Silence of the spams
If there have been fewer offers for Viagra and fake Rolexes clogging your inbox, thank a global effort aimed at combating spam. Internet security firm FireEye, which led the anti-spam initiative, disabled servers of the world's third-largest spammer, known as Grum. According to FireEye, Grum was sending 18 billion spam messages a day, nearly 20 percent of the worldwide total.
'Smartwatch' clocks in
One of the stars of the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this year was I'm Watch ($349), an Android-based "smartwatch" that also connects to an iPhone via a Bluetooth connection. The watch, which went on sale this month, displays information about incoming calls and shows previews of email and texts. It also displays photos and plays music.
Ikea augments catalog
Ikea is offering "augmented reality" in its 2013 catalog, which it is sending to 200 million homes around the world beginning this week. Scanning selected pages with a smartphone using the Ikea catalog app (iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android; free), allows you to access interactive features. The cover of the high-tech catalog, however, is strictly throwback. It features an armchair from the Swedish retailer's first catalog in 1951. -- Peter King