A Dozen of My Favorite Free Android Apps

Look, I know there are a thou­sand-and-one posts on the inter­net about the best smart­phone apps. I’ve a bunch of apps on my phone, and I use some more fre­quent­ly than oth­ers. How­ev­er, I want to share the ones that I enjoy which might not be so ubiq­ui­tous.

Productivity/Administrative

  • Con­nect­Bot — This app con­nects you with a Unix ter­mi­nal, remote­ly and secure­ly to anoth­er IP address, and does the same thing local­ly. It works great if you’re tweak­ing the per­mis­sions of your phone.
  • Advanced Task Killer — This app lets you quit pro­grams that you’re run­ning in the back­ground or for­get to exit, with just two taps. It real­ly helps me save on bat­tery life and showed me which pro­grams keep turn­ing on all the time. I used Con­nect­Bot to dis­able them.
  • Remote Desk­top — Rather than have to plug my phone into my com­put­er via USB to down­load pho­tos, &c. or pay for a ser­vice to sync items, this appli­ca­tion lets me con­nect to my phone via IP address when I’ve got it con­nect­ed to my home wire­less.

Reading/News

  • Google Read­er — This is a well known piece of the Google pie, but this app works so much bet­ter than using Read­er on a com­put­er that I find myself brows­ing through on my phone when there’s a com­put­er with­in arm’s reach.
  • iPa­per — This is the Android app that allows access to InstaPa­per, a book­marklet ser­vice that allows you to archive web arti­cles for read­ing at a lat­er date. Per­fect for when you’re stuck some­place with noth­ing worth read­ing near­by.

Fitness

  • Sit Ups — This app helps you set a sit up goal, assess­es your phys­i­cal con­di­tion and then tai­lors an iter­a­tive and timed work­out to help you reach the goal. Pick a goal, input your start­ing abil­i­ty, fol­low the work­out prompts (a gym whis­tle blows when the rest peri­od is over), and then input how dif­fi­cult you found the work­out. The next ses­sion will be changed slight­ly based on your feed­back.
  • Push Ups — Same deal, except for pushups.

Gaming

  • Star Traders — This is a space trad­ing, turn-based econ­o­my RPG that’s pret­ty bru­tal. Small choic­es have cumu­la­tive impacts on how you can inter­act with the var­i­ous plan­ets you vis­it. It has real­ly tough achieve­ments too. The Elite ver­sion is $1.99 and gives access to bet­ter ship upgrades, more mis­sions and more plan­ets.
  • Scram­bled Net — A sim­ply designed but addic­tive puz­zle game. Con­nect the tubes from the serv­er to the mon­i­tors to make sure every­one has some inter­nets. I play this all the time.
  • Geared — This is anoth­er puz­zle game (with very pleas­ing graph­ics). With a lim­it­ed num­ber of gears of dif­fer­ent sizes, and a lim­it­ed amount of space to work with, you have to con­nect the mov­ing yel­low gear too all of the sta­tion­ary blue gears.

Miscellaneous

  • Col­or Note — Because of this app, I no longer walk about with lit­tle scraps of note paper flut­ter­ing about me like moths. The gro­cery check­list is my boon com­pan­ion. I don’t for­get stuff on the list any­more!
  • Tod­dler Lock — This secures the phone so your off­spring can play with it. I lit­er­al­ly have to wres­tle the phone away from Abra­ham when he uses it. Swip­ing lets you draw, tap­ping places shapes, and there are pleas­ant chimes play­ing all the while.