Monday, 16 January 2012

Handspun and Apps

A couple of months ago, Julia, Mo and I decided to form a spinning group so we'd dedicate at least 2 hours per week to spinning. We picked Monday night and found a Coffee Culture in Whitby that would accommodate us. We posted it on Ravelry in a couple of groups and 2 gals found us right away. Last week we were joined by Nancy from Spinning Wheel Alpacas and her friend, Karen. This week, Eleanor also joined us who had heard about our group from Karen.

We're already thinking about cool places to spin in the summer including Nancy's alpaca farm and possibly a retreat up at Jennifer's cottage. 

Last week I finished spinning some Dyeing For Colour 70% Superwash Merino/30% bamboo and firestar. I started chain-plying it last week and finished plying it this evening. What resulted was 288 yd. and 103g of yarn.
It's quite soft and sparkly. I don't know what I'll spin with it but for now, I'll just fondle it.

We also discussed Apps (downloadable Applications) for our iPods/iPhones/cell phones and I learned about iSpin Toolkit ($4.99) and iKnit Needlesizer ($0.99).

In the iSpin Toolkit there is a tool to measure the angle of the twist, wpi and tpi gauges, a calculator, a ruler in both inches and cms and a table of contents for all the references. It is a very handy tool.

In the iKnit Needlesizer, you lay the needle across the screen and can fairly accurately determine the gauge. I tested several needle sizes and checked with a regular gauge.

Android and Apple have a voice feature on the free Google Search app (blue icon). Touch the mic icon and just say what you're searching for. With voice recognition, it will put the text in the window and do an instant Google search.

A very fun and free app is Dragon Dictation. It is a very dynamic voice recognition app that then allows you to edit or add more text and then send directly to Twitter, Facebook or as an email. You can also copy and paste the text into another application.

Shazam is a commercial mobile phone-based music identification service. Say you're in a store and you want to know the title or artist of the tune you're hearing. With the mic on your device, Shazam takes an acoustic 'fingerprint' of the song and within seconds, will tell you the title and artist. With the free app you get unlimited tagging and Lyric play (where you see the lyrics in time to the music you're hearing) but can enjoy more features if you upgrade to Encore for $3.99/yr or $5.99 for lifetime. It's the 4th most downloaded app in the world!

What cool apps (knitting, spinning or otherwise) can you recommend?

1 comment:

  1. That is a gorgeous skein of yarn! I've never chain plied before, but that skein is super encouraging!

    I'm going to download that iKnit Needlesizer app because I'm sure I've knitted my most recent project with the wrong size needles. I have a few that are very similar-looking, and that would have helped me know for sure.