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An app a day…

Apple says there are more than 700,000 apps available for the iPhone. It’s amazing, you can get an app to do just about anything.  A recent browse through the iTunes App Store left me needing a stiff drink – to me, it is just a little overwhelming. Everyone is making apps, it’s getting to the point where it is completely possible to live the Appman life, using apps to ‘help’ you do just about everything, from keeping track of your finances to finding a public toilet. For most things we do in the urban jungle, it has become true that there really is an app for that!
So we’re going to look at a day in the life of Appman, who relies on his iPhone for just about everything. Maybe you’ll discover a few interesting apps yourself which you can add to your own urban survival kit. Our hope is that it will become apparent just how much the wonders of modern technology is helping to bring mankind into a more healthy and rewarding existence, one app at a time.

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Appman(aged), the demise of the free thinker.

After a really good night’s sleep, Appman wakes to the blissful sound of his favourite K-pop song. Sleeping well used to be a hit and miss affair, but since the latest update to Pzizz, falling asleep and staying asleep has been a cinch. Waking up has also dramatically changed, instead of being woken up by the adrenaline jolt that accompanies an alarm loud enough to wake him in the middle of deep sleep, the wonders of the Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock mean that his iPhone actually wakes him when his sleep cycles are at their lightest, so no more groggy mornings spent dragging his eyes open. No, Appman wakes easily, rested and relaxed, ready to face the day.

His usual languorous morning stretch used to be just to get himself mobile, but now it has gone to the next level, with all stretching guided, timed and logged by iStretch. Reveling in his newfound flexibility, Appman strides confidently into the shower, deftly placing his phone on the edge of the washbasin. The premature demise of an earlier generation iPhone, when it fell from precisely this position onto the polished concrete bathroom floor, prompted an investigation and subsequent investment into top level device protection. Any risk of physical damage has now been safely mitigated. A Lifeproof cover means his Phone, and the precious apps, are completely safe.

Pulling the iBath curtain, he starts his shower and after using a precisely measured amount of water, the Vic Water app on his iPhone notifies him that shower time is now over. Appman is a responsible citizen, after all, and knowing how much water he uses for personal hygiene, along with how much is left in the local supply and reservoir system, are all essential to fulfilling his responsibilities toward Mother Earth.

Having attained the proper level of personal hygiene whilst still keeping in tune with the needs of the environment, Appman steps onto his iPhone enabled body scale to get an instant report of body weight, along with graphs detailing the percentage, types of fat and his BMI. It even logs his stats online, so he can check his progress anywhere, any time. Next, Appman slips on his blood pressure monitor, and as the iPhone logs his BP for the day, he does a quick check of his resting heart rate as measured with the Instant Heart Rate Monitor app, simply by placing the tip of his finger on the iPhone camera lens.

Morning body check completed with satisfactory results, Appman sighs a deep sigh of contentment, it’s all still going according to plan. Not his plan of course, but one made up by the Life Goals app.

Appman walks into the kitchen milliseconds before his breakfast reminder chimes on the iPhone. The Meal Planning app has helped Appman plan all his meals and shop accordingly, even taking into account the sale items in the local grocery store and his dietary needs and preferences. He daydreams wistfully about planning meals for his future family while pouring himself a bowl of cereal out of his perfectly stocked kitchen cupboard, and then carefully adds exactly 200ml of low fat milk. Appman has always prefered full fat, but Lose It! – his nutrition app – said 200ml skimmed milk and Appman has long since learnt not to argue with the app. The apps always know better.

One more quick but thorough visit to the bathroom to brush his teeth according to the instructions given by the Teeth Brush Timer app, developed for kids but useful for adults too, ensuring Appman’s teeth are sparkling, and he is finally ready to face the day.

Just before he heads out, Appman checks out the INRIX app which alerts him to the fact that there is a traffic accident on his usual route to work, causing traffic to be backed up for miles. Fortunately, the app suggests a detour which will get him to work on time and ensure that Appman’s stress levels remain within prescribed limits.

On the way to his car, parked just a short stroll from his apartment, Appman notices that the neighbour with the angry black mongrel dog has left his gate open, but even while he is waiting for the Self Defense app to start, Appman hears the telltale scratching of nails on concrete and before his scrambling fingers can even deposit the device safely into his pocket, the crazed animal launches itself at him and firmly latches onto his arm. Even more horrifying though, is the fact that as the beast dug its teeth into his arm, Appman was not able to hang on to his iPhone and could clearly see a reminder pop up on the ultra sharp, high definition display as it spun away in the strange slow motion world of an adrenalin rush. Appman’s mind races to remember what that reminder could possibly be about, while at the same time, his mouth and lungs work in powerful synergy to summon help in a series of drawn out, slow motion screams. Appman’s panicked primal scream finally draws the attention of the monster dog’s owner, and he comes running, also in apparent slow motion. Between the two of them, Appman and his neighbour manage to pry his arm free from the maw of the black mongrel, and as soon as he realizes he is free, Appman’s first reaction is to search frantically for his discarded iPhone. Appman can’t believe how lucky he is that he installed the Red Cross First Aid app just the other day, and right now Appman NEEDS it. Despite the ominous appearance of the puncture wounds, and feeling
like he is about to pass out, Appman is relieved to find out that according to the First Aid app, the wounds are not life threatening and he is going to be OK. So in a supreme display of app inspired self control, Appman composes himself and places a makeshift dressing on his wound, along with a poultice of ground up weeds found nearby that, according to the Medicinal Herbs Encyclopedia app, have healing properties and counteracts shock.

As his heart rate returns to normal, Appman consults ZocDoc to find a nearby doctor approved by his health insurance company and makes an emergency appointment, right from inside the app. Autocorrect proves to be a lifesaver as his shaking fingers type out a text message explaining the situation to his boss.

Just a few minutes later, while waiting for his appointment at the doctor, Appman peruses info provided by WebMD to inform himself about the proper treatment of dog bites. This doctor was rated very highly by ZocDoc, but you never know, people buy votes these days, and he better not disagree with the app.

The very professional doctor prescribes antibiotics and administers an anti-tetanus shot, which required that Appman bare a butt cheek, but Appman was not concerned, he knew that he had nothing to fear – according to the Body Weight & Measurement Tracker app, his measurements are nothing to be ashamed of. Appman’s doctor logs the details of the consultation into his iPad app, which sends a prescription to the local pharmacy and bills the whole lot to Appman’s health insurance provider. As he picks up the meds from the pharmacy, Appman double checks with Epocrates to check that the prescribed dosages are correct and for any possible side effects the doctor might have forgotten to tell him about. He then enters the prescription information into RXmindme to help him remember to take his meds for the full course of the prescription.

Finally, after what has turned out to be an unexpectedly long morning, which not even the powerful iPredict Fortune Teller App could have foreseen, Appman feels that he really deserves a coffee. Within a matter of seconds, the Starbucks app helps him locate the closest open store, and not long after, Appman is reclining comfortably on a  couch, sipping a grande sized latte (skimmed, no cream, of course) and searching the iTunes store for a solution to the dog problem. Surely there’s an app for that!

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