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Apps: Election season

Teacher Ruth Squillace has been bringing veterans into

Teacher Ruth Squillace has been bringing veterans into Shoreham-Wading River High School to share their stories with her students. Credit: AP

Election season is in full force, and regardless of whether you swing right or left (or someplace in between), there are great smartphone apps that can help inform your decision-making. Whether you are looking for insight and entertainment having to do with the 2012 presidential election, want to verify if campaign statements are accurate or just want your favorite candidate tucked in your pocket, these top-of-the-ticket apps are worthy of your vote and download.Comedy Central's

Indecision Game

(iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android; free)

Comedy Central and its flagship news satire program, "The Daily Show," are teaming up again for coverage of the 2012 presidential and congressional elections. This year you can engage in political combat in a branded trivia game from the Indecision team. Comedy Central's Indecision Game lets you take on players from Apple's Game Center or Facebook in politics-focused trivia competitions. Winning a round of the trivia game, each of which features three questions, earns you "voters" that you can add to your party. You can then assign those voters to different states to earn points and use them to take down your opponents. You can also customize your avatar as you earn money from competing and leveling-up your character. Also available from Comedy Central for iDevice owners is the Indecision Election Companion, which satirically updates users on relevant campaign events.

2012 Map: The Presidential Election App

(iPhone, iPod Touch; $0.99)

Those who follow the Electoral College take heed, because your day in the sun is coming soon. 2012 Map: The Presidential Election App will get you fired up for the upcoming election because it provides a detailed projection of which states will vote Democratic or Republican this November. In addition, 2012 Map also features historical voting data for each election, so you can compare the political landscape of different eras. Users can change the colors of the states for the 2012 election to create dream scenarios for their favorite candidate.

Obama for America

(iPhone, iPod Touch, Android; free)

The official app from the Obama campaign includes news and policy updates, a link to donate money (that you can easily share with others) and listings for campaign events near your location. The app also includes voter registration rules and tips for rallying your friends and contacts to vote by or before Election Day.

With Mitt

(iPhone, iPod Touch; free)

While this app became a punch line of sorts when it was revealed that an early version misspelled "America," it does provide a novel and fun way for Romney fanatics to broadcast and share their support. The app lets users take pictures with Romney images and messages superimposed on them. The Romney campaign also created the Mitt's VP app for iOS and Android devices and used it to announce his selection of Paul Ryan as his running mate via push notification.

Politifact Mobile

(iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android; $1.99)

Politicians tend to exaggerate and in some cases outright fib in order to win hotly contested elections. Want to see if President Barack Obama's portrayal of the automotive bailout is accurate, or if Mitt Romney really was for universal health care before he was against it? Politifact Mobile is for you. Powered by the Pulitzer Prize-winning website, this is the perfect app to bring to a cocktail party or barbecue in order to settle partisan debates. See when your favorite and least favorite candidates are being "Mostly True" or have their "Pants on Fire."


Tribune Media Services

Tech bytes


For tunes, teens turn to YouTube

Before he was a megastar, Justin Bieber was a YouTube star, and that may be the wave of the future. A new Nielsen survey found that 64 percent of teens said YouTube is their No. 1 source for music, followed by the radio (56 percent). The report also found 36 percent of teens bought a CD in the past year while 51 percent paid for a music download. -- Peter King


Damaged goods

New Yorkers keep a tight hold on their iPads, but too often lose their grip on their iPhones. Extended warranty provider SquareTrade says New York has the 13th lowest rate of reported iPad damage among the 50 states, but for iPhones, New York is only 30th best. South Carolina had the highest iPad damage, while the clumsiest iPhone owners lived in Mississippi. -- Peter King


Game maker going mobile

Video game maker Electronic Arts is in talks with Microsoft to bring games to the mobile version of Windows 8, due later this year. EA, maker of the SimCity, John Madden football and FIFA Soccer franchises, is counting on games on phones and tablets as it tries to reduce reliance on boxed retail products. -- Bloomberg News

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