Verdict: A fascinating and insightful look at chemistry.
What is it?
The Elements is an electronic version of the popular hardcover book that lets kids explore the periodic table of elements by interacting with 500 high-resolution animated images that can be rotated and viewed in true 3D.
Informative text summaries dole out factoids, like that arsenic is used as both a paint pigment and rat poison and that boron is the key ingredient in putty, in a compelling way that makes it interesting to browse for both adults and children. It also has an opening animation and catchy theme tune that you’ll be humming for days, whether you want to or not.
The main negative is that to unlock all the content, you need to be connected to the internet. If you’re on a tablet, this means you need to have a Wi-Fi connection or you’re only getting some of the experience. The app is also large and pricey, so parents might want to make sure there’s more than just a passing interest in the subject matter before committing to the download.
Health and fitness apps guide you to better behaviour and typically cheer you on, but Pact actually rewards you with cold hard cash. This mobile app, which requires a credit card and PayPal account to use, lets you form a pact for your health, either to work out a prescribed number of times per week or to eat right. If you fail, you get charged a minimum sum. Succeed, and you get a cut of the pot. The app is very clear in its rules, including instructions for getting out of your pact temporarily or permanently. If money moves you, Pact is an excellent fitness app.
When you think of parental control apps, you probably picture keeping youngsters away from nasty websites and controlling how much time they spend online. Most of these apps also generate activity reports for parents, and many offer real-time notification of any abuses. Xnspy doesn’t try to control what your child does; instead it sticks to monitoring the child’s activity undetectably. If spying on your kids suits you, and you don’t need real-time reporting, Xnspy could be what you need.