Apps for Kids is Boing Boing’s podcast about cool smartphone apps for kids and parents. My co-host is my 8-year-old daughter, Jane Frauenfelder.Read the rest
The latest episode of The Mutant Season, hosted by the amazing 9-year-old Gil, has an interview with Jane and me about our podcast, Apps for Kids. We had a great time on the show, which is conducted in a studio at Meltdown Comics in Los Angeles.
Virginia Prescott of New Hampshire Public Radio interviewed me today about the Apps for Kids podcast that my daughter Jane and I do each week.
With developers pumping out an estimated 2,000 applications daily for use on smart-phones and tablets, reviewers and web-critics are keeping busy sorting out what’s worth downloading, and what’s worth squat.
While some app-surfers could be overwhelmed by the chaos of the digital marketplace, Mark Frauenfelder saw a job opportunity for his adorable 8-year old-daughter, Jane. Together, they co-host Apps for kids, an app-review podcast for both kids and parents. Mark is the founder of Boing Boing, where you can hear the podcast.
Last week, Tom Klimchak emailed me with a link to a counting box app he made for his son. He said he'd been inspired by Cory's post about Nathan's beautiful wooden cased Kid's Counting Box (above), so I asked Tom to write about how he developed the app and the things he learned while developing it. Here's his excellent essay -- Mark
Last summer I read about Nathan's Kid's Counting Box (above) on Boing Boing and MAKE at about the same time I was teaching myself how to create iPhone apps. I'd bought myself a Mac for Father's Day a few months before and I had a bunch of ideas for little apps and was trying to decide which to start when I read about the electronic counting box.
There was something completely captivating about a beautifully crafted wooden box that uses a bright electronic display for such a simple and pure purpose as adding or subtracting one number to another. That being said, I think I would have ignored the Counting Box article if not for the impressive looking craftsmanship. It would never have caught my attention if it was just an LED display in a plastic project box, but the wood surface with the rounded joints just captured my imagination.
I was one of those kids that loved to press the equal sign on the calculator over and over, watching the total slowly grow larger. My own 4-year-old son is the same way. As much as I loved the idea of making a Counting Box of my own I knew that my electronic and woodshop skills really weren't up to par for such an ambitious project.
I showed the box to my son and he said it looked "cool" and that put the gears in motion. I pieced together a simple little app in about 10 minutes that would add 1 or subtract 1 from a total and handed the iPhone to my son. He immediately grasped the concept and began hitting the green button like crazy, being fascinated whenever the leading digit changed. He was still playing and asking questions about the numbers 20 minutes later, so I figured it was something worth pursuing.
It was a neat little app, but it didn't have the same feel of wonder as a real wood Counting Box that you can hold in your hand. So I started working on the graphics. I originally tried a brushed steel background, but it looked like a weird alien calculator. I went back to the wood box theme.
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Libsyn kindly featured Apps for Kids as its "Rockin' New Podcast" of the week, and interviewed me about it.
Why did you start podcasting?Rockin' New libsyn Podcasts: Apps For Kids
I started Apps for Kids because my 8-year-old daughter Jane and I like to play games on the iPhone and iPad together. We have a lot of fun checking out new apps, and then seeing if we can beat each other's high scores. My friends who have kids of their own were always asking Jane and me what apps they should download, and so I thought maybe we should share that advice to a larger audience. So we started Apps for Kids, and people seem to really like it
Apps for Kids is Boing Boing’s podcast about cool smartphone apps for kids and parents. My co-host is my 8-year-old daughter, Jane Frauenfelder. Today, we review a multiplayer game calledRead the rest
Apps For Kids is a new Boing Boing podcast. It’s about iOS apps that are fun for kids and their parents.Read the rest
Boing Boing pal Sarah Ruxin just released her first iOS app for children and it's a hit with my little happy mutants. Oddballz Circus is a very simple, silly, and ultracute game in which you mix and match body parts to make various circus characters. Of course, it's most fun when you create wonderfully strange circus freaks from a completely unnatural combination of head, torso, and legs/feet. My two-year-old (and I) both laugh a lot when she plays it. Sarah told me Oddballz Circus was inspired by the Surrealist parlor game Exquisite Corpse. She also promised that if my kids play Oddballz Circus everyday, they'll be the next André Breton and Méret Oppenheim. Actually, Sarah didn't say that. But I can dream. Oddballz Circus, Oddballz Apps