15
Oct
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Tasker is the current king of Android automation, but it's not exactly easy to use. Other apps have tried and failed to make it easier to understand the complex actions and various dependencies that arise when you automate Android. Dessin takes a completely visual approach to setting up actions – it's a little like an interactive flow chart. Is this the next big thing in Android automation?

Dessin is designed around a series of nodes, each one with specific actions like toggling WiFi or silencing the phone.

19
Aug
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Some of you probably don't think of many things when you hear the acronym "NFC". Those letters might conjure up thoughts of making mobile payments, and there's that cool ring that can unlock your smartphone, but there's not much else going on, right? Wrong. With an app like NFC Task Launcher, you can program your phone to do whatever you wish once it's near a NFC tag (which you place wherever you want them - car, nightstand, living room sofa, what have you).

07
May
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Let's be honest, most of us will never get to live in a crazy futuristic home like the Jetsons, but that doesn't mean we can't strive for a few of the simple luxuries. To that end, Doug Gregory is on track to make his living room smarter than the bridge of the USS Enterprise, all with a few electronic controllers and extensive use of Tasker. There's no way around it, you really need to see the video for this one.

01
May
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Automagic attempts to be Tasker, only easier to use. The problem is that Tasker is already pretty straightforward, and while Automagic makes certain things easier, it makes others more difficult. Still, a little competition never hurt anyone, and there are many ways Automagic challenges Tasker to step up its game.

Automagic-Banner

What it Does

The premise behind Automagic is nothing new. It is an app that automates tasks based on a wide range of variables.

25
Apr
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After a brief delay, it looks like AT&T's Digital Life service is finally ready for prime time. The service, which promises extensive home automation from temperature control to security monitoring to door lock control, will launch first in fifteen markets including Atlanta GA, Austin, Houston, and Dallas TX, Boulder and Denver CO, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Riverside CA, Miami FL, Philadelphia PA, Seattle WA, St Louis MI, and "select areas of the New York and New Jersey metropolitan area." By the end of the year, AT&T says it plans to expand the service to fifty markets.

23
Jul
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Alright, follow me on this one. Pushover is an app for Android that allows web apps, scripts, and a ton of other fancy developer things to plug in to your notification shade on your phone or tablet. Ifttt (short for 'If This, Then That') is a web app that lets you script actions that will be performed when predetermined conditions like new emails, new dropbox files, new RSS feed posts, etc., are met.

30
Jun
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When Google unveiled the Nexus Q at I/O on Wednesday, there were cheers. But not until the designers and creators of the hardware came on stage to explain what it was for a good 5 minutes. Hell, they even put together a fantastic video showing the process of manufacturing the Q (in the good 'ol US of A!). Seriously, if you haven't watched it - watch it. The production values are outstanding.

05
Jun
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Last Updated: August 22nd, 2012

A key aspect of the power of smartphones is the variety of functions they provide to the user. Data, GPS, Voice, Video, are all found in almost every Android phone on the market. With today's release of on{X} ("on-ex"), Microsoft hopes to exploit this convergence of functionality in a way that is less reliant on the user for input and more aware of its surroundings. By gathering information from the host of sensors available to the operating system, it's quite possible for your phone to determine its location and context and respond accordingly, without intervention by the user.

23
May
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Last Updated: May 25th, 2011

Some call Tasker the most versatile application ever created for Android, and I'm inclined to side with them. The app can automate hundreds of actions and bundle them together in powerful scripts that do exactly what you want them to do (see our Tasker review). Want to silence your phone at night and then restore the ringer to a predefined volume in the morning? No problem. How about popping up a menu of music apps when you plug in your headphones?

16
Mar
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Last Updated: July 24th, 2011

If your Android device relies on your interaction with it in order to do things, you're seriously missing out. There are several options that allow you to cut the cord, so to speak. The popular options have long been Locale and Tasker but, as you can see from their market pages, you have to be fiscally dedicated to the tasks they perform. In addition to that, these applications (Tasker especially) can be somewhat (read extremely) intimidating in the level of control they give you and the sheer volume of options at your disposal.

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