Some of the apps in Apple's iPhone App Store are more appropriate than others, but which are the good, the bad and the downright ugly?
Do not shake
Perhaps the most controversial app ever to leave Apple's store is the Baby Shaker 'game', an item that would offend even the most hardened of hearts. Developed by Sikalosoft, the application required the user to shake their handset until a cartoon baby ceased crying - or until Hell opened up and sucked in the player. Needless to say it drew a lot of complaints, and ultimately an apology and removal by Apple itself.
Not another fine mess, Stanley
If you're going to use your iPhone at the drop of a hat, or while installing a shelf to prevent such falls, you might enjoy the Stanley Level App. It isn't the first app to offer a spirit level in the palm of your hand, but it is developed by Stanley, the toolbox staple. So it must be on the level.
I need my data now!
Busy? Self-obsessed? Fascinated by statistics? A bit of a Twitter? Then Ego is the tool for you. All obsessions come at a price, and Ego costs $2 to install, but it does compile ALL your web stats from a range of services on one easy to use screen. You need never not know when one of your associates has done something pointless again. You lucky people.
I want one billllliiioooon downloads!
Apple announced a milestone in April, its App Store saw its one billionth down load. So which hot young go-getter downloaded the billionth up-to-the-minute app? Well it was 13-year old Connor Mulcahey, of Weston, Connecticut, and he downloaded something called Bump. Bump, apparently, lets the user share contact information by 'bumping' one iPhone into another. Since Mulcahey won a $10,000 iTunes gift card, an iPod touch, a Time Capsule and a MacBook Pro, we expect his 'Bumping' to increase dramatically. The lucky little pod.
Set iPhasers to vibrate
We've all heard the rumours about people using the vibrate function on their phones for less than hygienic reasons. So it is reassuring to hear that there is an app - correction, there are lots of apps - that positively embrace the healing nature of handheld vibrating devices. Finally, for you stressed out, busy executives, a happy ending!
Act your memory size, not your age
Alkali Media recently spoofed Apple's rigorous App Store censors when it got its Crudebox application onto the site with just a few tweaks. In its initial incarnation, Crudebox offered users the ability to emit childish, rude and puerile noises such as 'Fart' from their iPhone, and was turned down by Apple. However, with a few subtle tweaks - read 'Toot' for 'Fart', a new skin and a name change to Prudebox - it was readily accepted. Shame.
What about the one that got away?
Got a tick that requires you to flick your arm around in a wild manner regardless of where you are and what company you are in? Sod it, you might as well download Flick Fishing, a fishing application that - ah, come on, you can work it out. Fishing is beloved by grumpy men around the world, so why confine it to the river bank when you can do it at your desk or on the train?
Get rid of irritating bumps and apps
Want an application that mimics an actual shaver but doesn't actually shave? WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU? Regardless of your answer, you are not the only one, since apparently there does exist such a need for this kind of application and someone has actually bothered to develop one. A note on the developer's site reads: 'Please notice that uShave is NOT a real electric shaver!' Thereby revealing that the app is pitched firmly in the direction of idiots.
Reinventing the Tube
Want a pocket-sized mugger attractor when navigating the complicated London Underground? Why not download a map app to your iPhone and wave it around in a 'Look at me, I'm lost manner'? You might as well. After all, surely it can't be long until the Tube replaces its foldaway, pocket-sized, paper maps with large concrete boulders.
Super! Monkey! Ball!
There are many things in life that appeal to men, and balls and monkeys are just two of them. Although Super Monkey Ball has a desperate Alan Partridge ring about it, it has been a perennial favourite on the App Store, possibly because it is a frustratingly addictive balance game involving simians. And with apps like that, who needs expenses calculators?
J1043+2408 was observed for more than 10 years, and its radio light curve exhibited a periodic signal repeating in about 563 days
Success of Unity's test flight means Virgin Galactic is now close to taking its first paying tourist into space
V3 puts the pro-level football GPS tracker through its paces, and asks if it's more than a gimmick
Finding refutes many earlier studies that suggest that galaxies don't have much dark matter at the time of their birth