In celebration of the upcoming Valentine’s Day holiday, Best Fiends developer, Seriously, has announced a themed competition in the line-drawing puzzle game. The “Best Fiends Forever” event runs through February 14, and will see popular YouTube stars competing against each other to complete the most levels within a limited amount of time. The game’s players can get in on the competition as well, challenging their loved ones to complete levels in order to help their favorite YouTube personalities.
The Best Fiends Forever event will see PewDiePie competing against his girlfriend, CutiePieMarzia; CaptainSparklez will be playing against Aureylian; and TheStrippin will be competing against DexBonus. The player who completes the most levels by the end of the event will win.
Fans can back their favorite YouTube stars by challenging other players to complete levels in their own competitions. Once these fan battles are complete, winners are encouraged to take screenshots of their in-game progress and upload them to Twitter using the hashtag #BestFiendsForever, along with a hashtag for the YouTube personality they’d like to support. User submissions are being accepted until 3:00 PM Eastern time on Valentine’s Day, February 14.
Best Fiends is available to download for free on the iTunes App Store, Google Play and the Amazon Appstore. The level-based game sees players battling against monsters by making matches with different elemental symbols. Players must defeat all of a level’s monsters before running out of moves. Gamers receive currency over time, allowing them to make their own creatures stronger.
Article courtesy of SocialTimes Feed
Hackathons can sometimes turn into a sea of laptops and monitors, so perhaps it’s no surprise that, as I wandered the Disrupt Europe Hackathon today, I found myself drawn to a table covered with wiring and gadgets, including a Geiger counter.
The idea was pretty unusual, too – as the four-person team explained it to me, they’re trying to build a system for collecting and displaying crowdsourced radiation data.
Philip Wagner (the team member actually working with the Geiger counter) explained that in situations like the Fukushima nuclear disaster, you might not trust the company involved to give you accurate warnings about the radiation danger. So a participant in the Open Radioactivity Warning System would receive their own Geiger counter that collects and shares live data online.
The team’s hardware attracted other passersby, and one of them suggested that a similar project already exists. I think they were talking about Safecast, a project that was originally funded through Kickstarter in the wake of Fukushima – right now, it looks like Safecast is focused on Japan.
The team comes from the Austrian cities of Linz and Vienna, and it’s their first time at Disrupt. Wagner attributed the idea to his teammate Alex Entinger, who seems to have brought the the group together – he went to school with one of his teammates, another is his girlfriend, and he said he recruited Wagner because they work on the same floor.
It seems like the system is still very much a work in progress, but Entinger said he’s determined to have something finished for the hackathon presentations tomorrow. In the meantime, you can see an initial version on the website of Entinger’s startup, LXRobotics.
Article courtesy of TechCrunch
Summer’s all but over, but it’s no less important to stay hydrated. According to the CDC 43 percent of Americans drink fewer than four glasses of water a day, and while the actual amount you should drink varies from person to person, four glasses probably doesn’t cut it.
That’s where Caktus, a neat Finnish hardware startup that presented at TechLaunch’s second New Jersey demo day, comes into play. Their mission? To fix that dearth of drinking with an app and a curious sensor that straps onto your water bottle.
The sensor (called, adorably enough, the Hug) is a foam-lined gizmo that wraps itself around a water bottle and quietly tracks its motion. It’s not just a pint-sized koozie though — the Hug quietly monitors the bottle’s movements so it can provide its user with a rough idea how much fluid they’ve imbibed so far. Think of it as a giant Jawbone Up that straps onto your water receptacle and you’re on the right track.
As always though, the hardware is only part of the equation. A companion app (iOS only for now) uses an algorithm to suss out which of those motions actually correspond to the user lifting the bottle to drink and which are just noise caused by random movements. The app also tracks ambient temperature and keeps tabs on what sorts of exercise you’re doing (you still have to punch that in yourself) so it can update your hydration goal in real time.
To hear founder Panu Keski-Pukkila tell it, the Hug (and the rest of Caktus) was born out of pure necessity. An avid extreme athlete, he grew used to his girlfriend reminding him to drink more water while he was out carving up slopes in the Alps. When she moved to New York, though, that useful feedback mechanism disappeared and Keski-Pukkila set out to create something that could fill that particular hydro-centric void.
And you know what? As downright kooky as the whole thing sounds, the combo of the Hug sensor and the app actually worked really well. In a brief demo, the sensor was accurately able to determine that roughly two ounces of water were squeezed out of the bottle, and the partner app updated almost immediately. With the Hug, you’re not quantifying yourself so much as you’re quantifying the stuff that goes in your body. That said, the team is taking a proactive approach when it comes to all those fitness-tracking gizmos floating around out there. They’ve already managed to bake in Fitbit support so users won’t have to punch in how many glasses of water they’ve downed in a day.
For now the device is still strictly in its prototype phase, but the team is eagerly working to get the Hug, its partner app, and a dev-friendly API ready for prime time by early next year. So far they’ve locked up $25k in seed funding from the TechLaunch accelerator, and they plan to launch a crowdfunding campaign in early 2014 to lock up the cash necessary to start producing these things en masse.
Article courtesy of TechCrunch
Spotted in the Startup Alley at TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2013, myTAG is a soon-to-launch online platform for local selling that aims to make the e-commerce experience more transparent between buyer and seller by adding “social proof” into the equation. That is, instead of only looking at anonymous postings on a community board like Craigslist, myTAG users pull in their eBay and Amazon ratings as well as their social media profiles, and add them to their account to gain legitimacy.
Of course, many of companies have tried to take on Craigslist, and have failed to gain traction. But, explains myTAG co-founder Tony Pham, his platform is differentiated not only by the introduction of social profiles and seller ratings, but also because of its support for video. Buyers and sellers can integrate videos into their posts, instead of just photos. The service has some gamification elements, too, as users can earn “vouches” as others leave them ratings and reviews, and earn badges for reaching specific milestones, like the number of videos they create.