Making silly images with Motion FX

If you like Photobooth on your Mac then you are probably going to like Motion FX.

This free app uses your iSight camera in your Mac to which you can add visual effects based on movement, faces, mouse movements or movement in general.

Autodesk® Motion FX lets you create stunning real-time video effects using your computer’s camera.

Simply select your favorite preset effect, and create an incredible visual experience by moving in front of your computer’s camera. A preset cycling mode lets you automatically cycle through effects without lifting a finger. You can also use the Face Tracking technology of OS X Lion to emit effects from any faces visible to your camera.

If you want more personalization, there are more options you can play with in Motion FX. Color Detection lets you select a color from the live camera feed from which to emit effects, and with Effect Paint you can play with fluids using your trackpad or mouse. Video Warp mode lets you distort live video using your mouse or trackpad.

There is a live video effect, but unlike Photobooth you can only capture snapshots.

Not sure if there are any actual useful uses for this app, but you (or your kids) may have some fun using it.

Get Motion FX in the App Store.

US iTunes Account (in the UK)

There are quite a few Apps that are not available in the UK iTunes Store that I know I would find useful, so I got myself a free US iTunes Store account.

Launch iTunes.

Select iTunes Store from the left side panel options, you will then see the iTunes Store home page.

Select United States as your location from the country selection drop down menu available at the bottom of the page by clicking the Union Jack icon and then clicking the American flag.

After choosing the country, search for BBC News (though that is now available in the UK).

When the application’s page is loaded – click the Free App button, and the login window will appear.

Click on the Create Account button.

Fill out US address details and click on continue. If you don’t know any valid US address you can use Apple US retail store address by pointing your browser to and choosing a store from the list available in the page.

Beverly Hills 90210 is another useful address!

After submitting valid US postal address details, iTunes Store registration takes you to payment mode page.  Here choose the option None and finish the registration.

You will now see the congratulation page.You’re done! Your iTunes Store account is created without credit card and from now onwards you can download all the free applications available to US users.

Tube Deluxe

Whilst the iPod touch is an useful device, the iPhone can be very useful as it has the connectivity that makes some applications work better. One of these is London Tube Deluxe (iTunes Store link).

Tube Deluxe

If you travel by tube in London and it can be useful to know when and if there are problems on the Tube. Combine that with the tube map and using Google Maps to work out where alternative tube stations actually are in London, it is possible to ensure you can get where you need to get to even if there are terrible delays on the tube.

Mobile Apps

Noticed a couple of news items on BBC News which make for interesting reading if you are interested in mobile applications. The first item I saw was on the market for mobile apps.

The market for mobile applications, or apps, will become “as big as the internet”, peaking at 10 million apps in 2020, a leading online store says.

But it is not all good news…

However, GetJar say, the developer community will decline drastically as each developer makes less money.

This is certainly apparent in the iTunes App Store where expensive useful apps, are virtually immediately undercut by similar low cost or even free apps.

But it doesn’t seem to be putting people off with the following news:

Symbian, the operating system on nearly half the world’s smartphones, is to become involved in the development of mobile applications, or apps.

So who’s creating these mobile apps and what are they creating?