Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The Round-Up Volume 1, Issue 11: The New TV Season and the Round Up – Opposites Attract

It is finally upon us (drum roll please)… the Fall TV season is here! I’ve been watching a lot of Law & Order reruns since way before the Olympics overtook our DVR, but now the fall season is here and new episodes of our favorite shows (like Heroes), highly anticipated new shows (like Fringe) and of course… NFL Football! It’s as though a wave of fresh storylines have crashed upon the shores of our wind battered minds serving to replenish our malnourished imaginations. Of course, just because the TV has crept back into the pole position of our daily media mix with a vengeance doesn’t mean that we need to give any less attention to our favorite media, the Internet!

The online buzz seems to be around what impact the economy will have against online advertising, with companies revising their forecasts to reflect general economic uncertainty, but the economy doesn’t affect creativity and creativity is what spawns innovation.
The following companies which we came across over the last 2 weeks reflect innovation and ingenuity. They take existing challenges and create new solutions for the consumer. Check out what we have to say about them, then visit them yourself and formulate your own opinion. I think you’ll like what you see!

If you’re an iTunes user, and especially if you’re a power-iTunes user like I am, you need to check out TUNE-UP MEDIA (http://www.tuneupmedia.com/). Tune Up does exactly what it says – it “tunes up” your iTunes! You download the tool, and consider paying for it if you like, and use it to clean up your music. It will seek out cover art where the CD may have been missing it. It will fix song titles and fill in albums and artists, and it generally makes your iTunes catalog a little more organized. I paid the $19.95 lifetime fee and sat for well over 3 hours cleaning up my iTunes library. My Apple cover-flow is much better now, and for someone who likes organization as much as I do, it’s literally music to my ears!

If you own a car you know that there are lots of little details. You have to keep track of your warranty and insurance. You have to find mechanics, you may buy after-market accessories, and possibly you need more information regarding a second car. The web allows you to gather all this information, but not easily. That is until we found DRIVERSIDE (http://www.driverside.com/). Driverside is the first auto-targeted site that is not about purely buying or selling, but is about owning a car! If you want to know how to keep great care of your car and you’re looking for a single location to store the relevant information about your car, then check out Driverside. I recently met with them and I thought they were a great company with a solid idea!

Discovering new music online can be a fun activity, but it can also be very overwhelming very quickly! OURSTAGE (http://www.ourstage.com/) is a great place to get started because they give a home to new artists and they let the fans decide who should be the best! The OurStage site is sort of a little “Billboard of its own”. Fans and Artists post up their music and upcoming gigs and other fans vote on what’s good! I spend a lot of time looking at new music online and these guys just figured out a way to make it a little easier, so check them out and see if you find anything that tickles your fancy!

Of course, the Round Up is all about digital and these days you can’t be digital unless you take into account the application space, so from time to time I reserve the right to let you know about some of the coolest applications we’ve discovered and this week we want to highlight some of the coolest iPhone Apps we’ve seen thus far!

Beyond the obvious games and Internet applications that make sense on my iPhone, you have to check out the TRULIA app. The Trulia App is a real estate tool that allows you to pinpoint your location using the iPhone’s GPS system and locate open houses in your immediate area! For someone looking to relocate or for a real estate junkie looking to find deals in his or her area, this app is app-solutely addictive.

The YELP and URBANSPOON apps for iPhone are a perfect complement to the Trulia app because they allow you to find local restaurants and local businesses that meet your immediate needs. Yelp gives you reviews and UrbanSpoon gives you restaurant recommendations. The iPhone is an amazing tool when used properly which is why I can only envision the other carriers (TMobile, Verizon, Sprint) having their own App Stores in a matter of months.

Of course, the most useful App I’ve seen to date is a simple one called the WOOO BUTTON! If you haven’t seen it yet, check it out. It’s easily hours of fun for the whole family!

Well, that’s it for this issue. Have a great weekend and enjoy these cool sites and the new Fall TV season. Oh and don’t forget that Sunday is the first Sunday of the NFL season, so load your team into the SPORTACULAR App on your iPhone and start tracking your fantasy players!
Thanks for reading!

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