Tech, surf and other random interestingness, curated by Gianfranco Lanzio.

Sep 12, 2014

Yahoo News Digest for iPad


Yahoo News Digest provides a definitive summary of all the important, need-to-know news. Digests are delivered twice a day - once in the morning and once in the evening. All the top stories are summarized and presented with the key information that you need to stay on top of what’s happening.

It was previously available for iPhone and Android only, and it’s my to-go source for general world information. The app is sleek, well design and well-thought. I love how the information is limited and curated (usually between 6 and 10) and you get a “prize” if you read them all.

You can download it for free.

Sep 11, 2014

Fotonica for iOS


FOTONICA is a first-person game about running, jumping, sense of speed, and discovery.

One of my favorite running games ever is now available for iOS and I couldn’t be happier. It feels like it was made for this platform (except for the cool but slightly confusing menus, oh well).

I love the music, the geometric environment and the fact that it's first person and you can see the hands. It almost feels like Canabalt and Mirror's Edge had a son they weren't supposed to have.

It’s 2,69€ on the App Store and is a universal app.

Sep 11, 2014

The only thing worth reading about the Apple Watch


I’ve chosen to focus on the many things I believe Apple got right and those I believe they got wrong, all the while viewing this piece of wearable technology not as a digital peripheral, but as an actual watch. Essentially, what can our friends in Switzerland learn from Apple, and what can Apple learn from the Swiss.

I’ve watched the Keynote live and was not impressed. This is, right now, the only thing worth reading about the Apple Watch.

I’m a little more impressed, still don’t find a use for it (and I don’t have an iPhone).

Sep 3, 2014

Summer Gaming Roundup


This summer I've been playing games on iOS more than usual.

I'm sure I am going to leave a lot of worthy games behind1, but there are three that I have been playing a lot lately and feel like you should check them out too.

The first one has been on the App Store for quite some time and is called Boson X: it's a running game set in a particle accelerator. You jump right or left by tapping on the screen and straight by holding both thumbs at the same time. It's incredibly difficult (especially the new Dark Energy Containment Laboratory level) but always entertaining and somehow always feels like if you play "just one more time" you will get the score needed to get to the next level.

ALONE is a newly released endless runner that Andrea Latino suggested I tried, and I thank him for that. You are a lonely spaceship in the depths of space and by swiping your thumb up or down you have to stay alive by avoiding rocks and meteors (I immediately disabled the inverted controls). The game is hard and frantic and I didn't get this excited for an endless runner since Canabalt and that's saying a lot. The controls, once you get used to them, are perfect and both the art direction and music are top notch.

It would seem that my last suggestion, Rules, would be an easier and more relaxing game since you need memory and thinking more than reflexes and skills: quite the contrary. It's incredibly hard to get past levels ~20 but it's also extremely rewarding and you will always find yourself trying to get past your best score or your highest level. Good luck!

Hope you enjoy these games and I'm open to your suggestions, would love to try some new games out.

You can find them on the App Store (ALONE is also available for Android and Boson X is available for most of the platforms out there):

Boson X ALONE Rules

  1. Tweet your suggestions @gianlovessurf

Aug 11, 2014

Iceland & Greenland


You might have been wondering (probably not much) why the surfernerd has been updated so little: I've been traveling quite a bit and living life and stuff like that and the technological sphere has been out of my mind lately.

But here I am to share with you some (not so) nice pictures about two beautiful countries I've just been to: Iceland and Greenland. For those that don't know they're both up north and in summer they're far greener than the names and general imagination would suggest.

They also have the rawest and most beautiful landscapes and nature I've ever seen so I'd suggest you go there if you have a chance (and I'm a warm weather–sun–beach kind of person).

August is nearing its end and both Metro Podcast and The Backseat Companion will be back soon, so keep your eyes open!

Jun 9, 2014

Do you like running?

I do. I mean, I don't.

I like the idea of running. I love the feeling after a run: it feels like I accomplished something and I deserve a pat on my back. I enjoy the scenery, the music in my ears, the fact that all the thoughts that I have live in a limbo that's destroyed as soon as I stop.

Sometimes I even like the actual running part.

But oh if there are some things I dislike. I dislike the part of thinking about the actual running: not the romanticized idea of putting one foot after the other in rapid succession to feel better afterwards but the gloomy thoughts of having to leave the comfort of my house and go do something I might as well not do. I dislike the weather: unless it's an early summer morning it's either too damn cold or too damn warm. There are times I hate running: nobody enjoys being out of breath, pain in the spleen area, hurting feet, legs and calves.

Still, whenever I can / find the strength to do so, I run.

Because, in some peculiar way, the act of pointlessly putting one foot after the other in rapid succession has some deep and cathartic meaning behind it – a sort of metaphor of what life is.

May 30, 2014

To understand Beats you need to understand Lady Gaga

Jimmy Iovine sees the opportunity in changing the game and “building a communication between a fan and an artist.” In other words Beats Music is not yet another streaming service designed to sell music, but a platform for artists to build businesses and “sell everything but music” as Troy Carter says.

Smartest and most interesting thing you'll read about the Apple – Beats deal.

May 27, 2014

The Fermi Paradox

Depending on where The Great Filter occurs, we’re left with three possible realities: We’re rare, we’re first, or we’re fucked.

My mind is blown. If you care about the universe and read one thing this whole month, let it be this one.

This was shared by the great @diegopetrucci in our shared newsletter, The Backseat Companion. You should definitely subscribe.

ps: Thanks to @linuz90, I had completely missed this one.

May 15, 2014

Thomas Was Alone for iPad

I totally did not expect this. Thomas Was Alone is one of my favorite indie games ever and it's now available on the iPad. If you haven't already played, go grab it immediately.

Thomas Was Alone

Now I'm just waiting for my favorite game ever (VVVVVV) to come to the iPad soon.

May 6, 2014

Apple Stores Innovator's Dilemma

[...] the truth is that Apple doesn’t sell phones (or computers or tablets); they sell iPhones. And iPhones are not just hardware, but also the software that runs on them. But even that is missing the whole picture. To buy an iPhone is to buy into an experience that includes everything from advertising to following the news to visiting a store to buying a phone to unboxing to downloading apps to visiting a genius and so on and so forth.

It’s no accident that the Apple Store appears twice in that sequence.

I can only nod to what Ben Thompson says, as usual. This time is on the central role the Apple Store plays in the whole Apple experience.