How interesting! - SunStar

How interesting!

By Meg Rivera

ONE of the things that I like to collect is random skills. I admit that the general skills knowledge I currently have is limited only to what ever person should know, like how to microwave an egg and how to sew buttons onto my blouses. Now that I think about it, I should have spent more time learning the practical stuff. Calculating your taxes, for one. Changing a light bulb. The differences between a circuit breaker and my left elbow. I could go on, but then I’d sound like a useless potato.

This week, I had a look into some handy “how-to” apps, guides taken from the Internet’s collective practical knowledge. I look back now and think about how handy these would have been, during every single pickle I found myself in. Next time you find yourself wondering how to do something, don’t wait for the next passerby to ask for help; have a look at your smart device and get yourself out of a mess, one step at a time.

AllApp name: TutoriALL

App developer: Puckr LLC

Available on: iTunes, Google Play

Easy to use: This one is a “point and tap”; some light typing is needed if you want to create your own tutorial.

Overall comment: This app is geared for for crafters and recipe experimenters. It has loads of entries on how to recycle bits of junk or how to adapt recipes to make them Instagram-worthy. Think of it like Pinterest with instructions. It’s very user-generated, and I can tell there isn’t a lot of supervision done on some of the entries that come up when you do a search on how to do something. But give it a try anyway, you might find yourself doing something cool.

Howcast-iconApp name: How To Videos – Howcast

App developer: Howcast

Available on: iTunes, Google Play

Easy to use: Easy enough. You download “catalogues”, or sets of videos all related to a certain category. You get three free ones (including one that’s all about how to kiss!) and you have to pay for any additional catalogues.

Overall comment: Howcast is the standard when it comes to step-by-step instructions. They produce videos featuring real advice from experts, so you know that you’re being taught by someone who actually knows their stuff. You do need an internet connection to use this app, so definitely not useful for life or death emergencies. Flick through the videos here before you need to know how to use them, at least you’ll get some solid instruction out of them.

wikiHow-iconApp name: WikiHow

App developer: wikiHow Inc.

Available on: iTunes, Google Play

Easy to use: Easy as pie. You’ll need to have a play around first with the “Survival Kit” feature, which stores all the “how-tos” you want to be viewed offline.

Overall comment: As with all things labelled “wiki”, this one comes in as a solid fix. You search what you want to learn how to do, and it displays a number of processes for you to choose from. Each process is simply explained, often with diagrams or pictures to help. If there is a process that you will need to refer to offline, store it in your “Survival Kit”. Perfect for a camping trip, four stars out of five.

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