Memory Binder: iPhone/iPod Touch Version

Published on Sunday, June 28, 2009 in , , , , , , , ,

Note: If you like the idea of the Memory Binder, I discuss other ideas for it in Memory Feat Props, Memory Feat Props II and in New Ideas for the Memory Binder (Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV).

After I wrote in my iPhone/iPod Touch Amazement post about QuickCal as a reference, it began occurring to me that the iPhone/iPod Touch could replace the memory binder. This could not only make everything far more portable, but can also add a nice touch to the presention itself.

First, both handhelds have an amazing array of built-in features that can aid a memory feat presentation. If you perform Doug Canning's Mental Shopper, the 5 cards that show the items and their prices could be put in as photos in their own album. Even while holding the screen away from you, it wouldn't be hard to flip through the photos after your audience member makes announces their choices. Many of the feats I talked about in New Ideas for the Memory Binder (Part III) could also be set up as photos, as well.

Another good ready-made feature is the ability to store and watch TV and movies. In Grey Matters' first year, I discussed the idea of memorizing a DVD boxed set by its chapters. Since many movies from iTunes have ready-made chapters in them, and this is supported by the iPhone's/iPod Touch's player, you have a nice portable version of this feat ready to go! Even if you're using movies ripped from DVDs, there are still ways to add chapters to those movies, as well. Back then, I never though this memory feat would be something you could carry around in your pocket.

Thankfully, you're not limited to the built-in applications that come with it. I've mentioned QuickCal (iTunes Link) as a reference to prove you're right in the Day of the Week For Any Date feat already, but there's also WhichDay (iTunes Link), a free app, than can also be used here.

In Part IV of my Memory Binder series, I mention carrying the props for the Knight's Tour. The native apps make that much easier, and there's even a free version of Knight's Tour (iTunes Link) available. Regular readers will also remember that I offer a Knight's Tour web app right here on Grey Matters. This is a great version if you're online, but what do you do if you don't have internet access and you have a web app that works with your presentation?

This is where one of the handiest native apps comes in - Air Sharing (iTunes Link) and/or Air Sharing Pro (iTunes Link)! Both of these programs set your iPhone/iPod Touch up as a hard disk via a wifi connection with your computer. The big difference between the standard Air Sharing and the Pro version is that the Pro version allows you to perform file manipulation, such as compression, print and e-mail. Air Sharing is probably one of the most used apps in my iPod Touch, because it is so versatile.

Not only can they store files, but they can also display an amazing variety of files. They can even run web apps developed in Dashcode just fine, including their HTML, Javascript and CSS components! Yes, Air Sharing can run web apps offline, as long as they don't require online access to function properly. One thing to consider is that both versions of Air Sharing have a 44-pixel-high navigation bar that appears when you tap the screen, so if you want to store a web app you've developed, I suggest creating a 320 by 400 window (instead of the standard 320 by 356) for your app, and just have an empty black bar across the top 44 pixels. That way, Air Sharing will interfere less with the app itself.

One of the best things about Apple's handhelds is that they can also help you practice for the demonstration of the feats, as well. About a year ago, I reviewed Mental Case, which has since become my favorite flashcard program. Since then, they've released the Mental Case native app (iTunes Link). Instead of a replacement for the desktop version, it works in conjunction with it. You can not only test yourself with your own cards, but download flashcard libraries from Flashcard Exchange, as well!

With a little thought, it's not tough to see how you can shrink a memory binder until it's small enough to fit in your pocket. Do you have any other ideas? If so, I'd like to hear about them.

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