“Ah spring…a time of year when young men’s [and women’s] fancy lightly turns to thoughts of”…basketball? With apologies to Alfred, Lord Tennyson, for many the month of March doesn’t mean spring, or flowers or even thoughts of love. March is simply time for March Madness, when 68 college basketball teams vie to win the distinction of NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Champion. But even college basketball has been bitten by the technology bug, with a March Madness bracket app being the latest among hot technology trends to hit in 2013. Of course there are many other apps, new and old, that can actually help you study, too, so read on for the latest in fun and learning, online-style.
Filling out brackets and betting which college team will take the title has become a bit of a national pastime. In a February 6, 2013, post on thenextweb.com, “The duo behind Glif and Cosmonaut return to Kickstarter with Simple Bracket app for March Madness,” written by Harrison Weber, dealt with this hot technology trend. Studio Neat, the duo mentioned in the post title, are working on Simple Bracket “an iPhone app for filling in March Madness college basketball brackets and competing with friends,” Weber writes.
While bracket apps already exist, they tend to fall short of what users want. The Studio Neat bracket app includes “a re-thought user interface, improved scoring system and allow[s] for more engagement and sharing through an integration with Twitter” according to Weber. Almost complete, the app designers are doing some minor refinements to their creation until March Madness begins, and they have already surpassed their $10,000 goal on Kickstarter.
Modern Tech Tools
The fun and rivalry brought about during March Madness isn’t the only area that will benefit from hot technology trends in the coming years. According to a Presta infographic in a May 21, 2012 post, “20 Surprising Stats About Technology Use in College,” by Jeff Dunn on edudemic.com, these are the six tech tools and apps that are changing higher education for the modern college student:
- Skype (Cost: Free; Platform: Android, BlackBerry, iOS)—A smart phone app for Skype makes virtual study groups a breeze, and face-to-face chats with friends and family far away a reality.
- Evernote Peek (Cost: Free; Platform: Apple iPad)—Offering virtual flashcards via your iPad, Evernote Peek might even make studying more fun (yeah, right …) or at least help you track and grade your progress along the way.
- Grades 2 (Cost: Free; Platform: iOS)—Need a certain test grade to swing a B in your geology class? Grades 2 calculates what grade you need, plus keeps track of your overall GPA and course credits. Now when you are Skyping mom and dad you can let them know how great you are doing.
- Snoozerr Recordings (Cost: 99 cents; Platform: iOS)—Missing vital info during a lecture? Want to remember that study group session for later? Snoozerr lets you record every word your professor says, as well as capture a visual of any whiteboard notes from the class. Think of it as your instant recall app.
- Wunderlist (Cost: Free; Platform: Android, iOS)—Having a hard time keeping track of all your assignments? Wunderlist lets you create tasks and to-do lists. Additionally, it can track your assignments and be synced with all your devices through their Cloud. You’ll never be late on a paper again.
- AroundMe (Cost: Free; Platform: Android, iOS)—Campus life isn’t all about studying and tests, however. When you need to know what is around you, from the closest grocery store to the nearest places to grab a bite, AroundMe uses GPS to find the closest spots.
Many college students are dependent on digital technology in the classroom, according to a study released by CourseSmart and Wakefield Research. According to the data, 38% of students said that they could not go 10 minutes without checking their laptop, smartphone, tablet or ereader. If you’re one of the many who have been bitten by the digital buzz, use it to your advantage for march madness!
What are some of your favorite sports apps? Tell us in the comments below!