Five things worth sharing from the last week or so, brought to you by a different member of the Browser Media team every Friday.
This week’s My Five is by Libby, and is (for the most part) Hallowe’en themed.
1. Google+’s Halloweenify
What better way to get into the Halloween spirit than with a spine-chilling snapshot? Ok, not exactly ‘spine-chilling’ but the photo app from Google+ allows you to choose from a “fun effect” or a “spooky effect” to create creepy headshots, gruesome group photos or silly Seflies. If you’re on Android, you can go to the Photos app, use the Auto-Awesome button to pick an effect, then choose a photo and click create. You can also visit photos.google.com and use the “Halloweenify your photo” option.
… that’s about it really. Just a bit of fun. The type of effect is randomly applied, so you can have a few goes to find the best one, and when you do, you can upload them to G+, you can email them, Tweet them, Facebook them, or even upload them to a blog post:
The story behind Pickle is a pretty cool one. The concept was posted on the Social Networking site Imgur, about a month ago and was so well received , that the original poster had no choice but to follow up.
The idea is simple: Competitive Snapchat. Pickle users start a challenge (some examples include ‘Most professional’, ‘Biggest muscles’ and ‘Hairest belly button’) and after four people have accepted, it goes public allowing other users to vote for their favourite. After 100 votes, the winner is declared, showered with praise and can subsequently revel in glory. Recurring winners are added to a leaderboard for further kudos.
This week, more subscribers are being invited to beta test the app by entering Pickle’s Twitter competition for #BestHalloweenSelfie. All participants who tweet their photo and email Pickle HQ to tell them if they’re an Android or iPhone user receive a “Wanna Beta Test?” email. The winner of the competition gets a Pickle tee shirt (plus the standard praise/glory/kudos).
3. Lyrical Wizard – Daniel Radcliffe
Bit of a tenuous link between wizards and Halloween here, but the internet’s gone ba-nay-nay for Daniel Radcliffe’s performance of “Alphabet Aerobics” by Blackalicious on The Tonight Show.
Radcliffe chatted about his passion for complicated and lyrically intricate rap, expressing his appreciation for artists Eminem and Plan B, claiming he knew the words to “The Real Slim Shady” before any of his classmates. What followed was a not-so-surprising twist in the interview where Jimmy Fallon produces a microphone and invites Radcliffe to showcase his talent for rapping. What was surprising, though, was how good the delivery was. For those who are unfamiliar with the works of Gift of Gab and Chief Xcel, who make up the hip-hop duo Blackalicious, you can check out the lyrics here . Hey, why not read along with the video?
4. Facebook’s Masque of the Red Death
Right, the Halloween references are getting trickier and trickier… still, I’ll press on with the new Facebook app. Nothing to do with Edgar Alan Poe, but the social media giant’s response to the new wave of anonymous social networks.
Currently iPhone only, it allows users to discuss topics anonymously under pseudonyms in private forums, or ‘Rooms’. The topic and colour scheme of a Room is determined by its creator and as well as text, it can contain images and video. Users can upload cover photos, create pinned messages and decide whether or not the content is accessible to the outside world.
There have been some rumblings about legal action against Facebook from Rooms Inc, who claim Facebook have copied their Room app, telling 9to5mac.com:
“We’re sure this is not a coincidence. We don’t understand how Facebook, with all their lawyers, could have released an app with the same name and features. We won’t let this happen and we want to defend all entrepreneurs with great ideas and great visions.”
5. Browser Media’s Second Halloween Pumpkin Carving Competition
Seven (and a half) entries this year. All excellent: