Apps

These apps help in the fight against COVID-19

Making the job of medical frontliners easier

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The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic shows no sign of slowing down. Most medical facilities are operating beyond their capacity as they try to accommodate and save the lives of those infected. Medical frontliners are leading the fight against the pandemic as they race to save as many lives as possible. As for most citizens, however, they are advised to stay at home to avoid the further spread of the disease.

However, that is not to say that citizens can’t do anything to stop the pandemic. One way for citizens to contribute to the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic is to donate to various organizations. There’s also another way: using apps that are crucial to assessing persons at risk and disseminating valuable information.

Here are some of those app:

1. ENDCov

A team of students from the Asian Institute of Management developed this app to assess whether a person is at risk from the disease. App users have to sign up and answer a survey that assesses them for their likeness to having COVID-19. The survey follows the latest surveillance guidelines set by the Philippines’ Department of Health and the World Health Organization.

The app will then determine a user’s health status and give advice on what steps to take next, including going on a self-quarantine or getting tested for the disease. Users can save the contact details of whom they’ve made contact with, as well as the places they’ve visited. This information is useful for frontliners doing contact tracing on a person under investigation.

Those who are skeptical about using the app due to privacy concerns can set aside their fears since the app conforms to RA 11332 (Mandatory Disclosure of Notifiable Diseases Act) and RA 10173 (Data Privacy Act of 2012).

2. WeTrace

WeTrace has been a lot of attention lately as a local alternative to apps that offer contact tracing. The app is the product of an IT expert based in Cebu. It uses geolocation for contact tracing and patient mapping.

To activate, the app needs an Internet connection. Once activated, it assigns a unique code to each device for personalization. It will then trace a user’s timeline and movements and notify other WeTrace users nearby. If a user gets infected, the app will automatically notify the authorities and other people who came into contact. Plus, there’s a reporting function built-in to the app itself.

Also, users can know if there are active cases in their community through its latest news function.

3. COVID Watch PH

This app is created by the Philippine government through the collaboration of the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), and Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth). Like the other apps on this list, COVID Watch PH is a real-time patient monitoring and contact tracing app.

Aside from locating patients and providing instant updates, the app also provides a triage assessment. COVID-19 patients can also request for financial aid that shall cover any hospitalization bills.

4. RC143

RC143 is the official app of the Philippine Red Cross. The organization modified the app to better respond to the pandemic. The app uses machine learning along with the wireless and sensory data from a smartphone to trace back contacts with other persons and determine exposure to the disease. In case that the app diagnosed a user with a possible infection, a user can connect to Red Cross for medical assistance.

One neat feature of this app is that it can alert users if they have been to areas with a high risk of infection or a high number of active cases.

SEE ALSO: How to disinfect your tech from the coronavirus | Coronavirus porn is trending on Pornhub | Here’s where you can donate to the COVID-19 outbreak efforts | 4 ways you can use TikTok to help during the COVID-19 crisis


As general rules, the CDC or The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention listed these to help with preventing the spread of COVID-19:

  • Stay home when sick
  • Cover coughs and sneezes
  • Frequently wash hands with soap and water
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces

Apps

Ultrahuman is an all-in-one fitness app

Workout, meditate and sleep soundly

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Staying physically and mentally fit is extra challenging during a pandemic, but it’s become essential now more than ever. Ultrahuman is a fitness app launched that offers a very convenient platform that targets the three main health points: physical exercise, meditation and sleep. It helps you stay fit from the moment you wake up until you go to bed!

This newest app, which debuted on CES 2021, features different content per category. It includes home workouts and yoga programs from world-class athletes and professional trainers to focus on your physical strength. You can choose from various workouts — from running and yoga to weightlifting and HIIT. The app is designed for all fitness levels.

With the app’s biofeedback technology, you can also track your heart rate and calories burned in real-time.

There’s also content focusing on mindfulness, including guided meditations, bedtime stories, calming meditation music, nature and sleep sounds, breathing exercises, among others. Manage stress and anxiety better by improving your mental health and sleeping patterns with the help of this series.

You can also listen to “brain music”, a section where you can find songs curated by “neuro-musicians” that aids focus, sleep and productivity.

Ultrahuman also partnered with UCLA, Mindsize, and Unified Mindfulness to bring the best of mind science and technology together.

The app is available on iOS and Android, and is already rolled out across 50+ countries globally. It’s been recognized by Apple as one of the top apps they love. Apple Watch users can also integrate their app to track their health progress real-time.

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Apps

Prepare your meals through your phone, fridge using Samsung SmartThings

The kitchen, simplified

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With everything going on in the world, it’s no surprise that people are spending more time in the kitchen and looking out for new recipes.

The good news? Samsung has just the thing to get it sorted quickly and easily. They’re bringing in Family Hub features into mobile users through the SmartThings app.

Samsung’s SmartThings Cooking service helps bring all of your Samsung kitchen appliances together. How? It lets you search, plan, purchase, and meal prep seamlessly through your phone or fridge through the SmartThings app.

On top of that, it recommends customized recipes based on your taste and preferences while considering ingredients available to you. You can scroll through recipe collections when you’re undecided or quickly zero-in on meals that suit your cravings.

SmartThings Cooking, powered by Whisk, is accessible through Samsung’s SmartThings. If you’ve got the Family Hub in your smart kitchen arsenal, there’s no need to fret.

The fridge keeps tabs of what you have and don’t, adding missing ingredients directly to your online grocery cart for at-home deliveries. Not to mention, you can shop through Walmart, Kroger, Instacart, and Amazon Fresh, using the Whisk network.

With SmartThings added to the Family Hub smart fridge, you get to enjoy all the cool features and more! You get to access your other smart kitchen gadgets through widgets on the screen, prioritize most used apps, and feature family photos, notes, and recipes.

And, if cooking is what you’re worried about, Samsung has you covered for even that. SmartThings guides you through easy cooking steps and lets you control cooking modes, temperatures, and time settings with one touch. Leaving you with little room for error.

So, with all that in mind, was it really a surprise to see Samsung’s Family Hub win its sixth consecutive CES Innovation Award this year? For us, not quite.

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Apps

Adobe starts blocking Flash content for all users

The final death blow to the once-popular software

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Do you still use Adobe Flash?  Then, you might have to stop using that sooner. Starting January 12, Adobe will all Flash content from running, bringing an end to the once-popular software platform.

Adobe’s process of discontinuing Flash actually began a few years ago, with end-of-life (EOL) notice dating back to 2017. Popular browsers began to drop support for it, with Firefox the first to do so last December 2020.

Adobe officially dropped support for the Flash player by December 31, 2020. Users were still able to run Flash content after that aforementioned date, however. That changes this January when Adobe blocks all content from running.

For most users, the effect will be minimal since Flash players are already disabled on most browsers. Also, most companies have already migrated to alternatives. Web developers, for example, are already using standard HTML5 to provide interactivity for their websites.

Popular in an instant, gone in a flash

This 2021 is the final death blow for the once-popular Adobe Flash. In the early part of 2000, Flash gained widespread adoption thanks to the rich interactivity it provides to the user. Most games found on the web during those times were built with it. Miniclip, for example, used to have a large library of games built with Flash.

The turning point for Flash came during the early 2010s with the adoption of HTML5. This HTML version introduced interactive elements which made Flash redundant in most use cases. Some also believe that Steve Jobs actually played a role in its downfall by not letting earlier versions of iOS support it by default. It also doesn’t help that Adobe had to issue numerous security updates over the course of its development.

So, if you’re still sticking to those old .swf or .flv files, now is the time to move on. Sure, Flash animations were great and quirky (and are still today) but you shouldn’t also risk your device to malware caused by an outdated software. If you are somewhat missing those days of viewing Flash right from your browser, you should check out the Internet Archive’s archive library with hundreds of animation that you can enjoy.

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