x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 21 January 2018

App of the Week: Put social networks on the map with GO HD

Try out the social networking app GO HD and you might find people actually pay attention.

My Twitter feed is a complete mess. It's my own fault. A few years ago, I turned on an "auto-add" feature and forgot how to turn it off. Without a doorman on guard, each nook and cranny of my account has become a safe haven for just about every self-described online marketer, branding consultant and healthy-living guru - all perpetually prattling on with tempting link bait such as "discover how to access your potential and greatness" and "The Wonderful Health Benefits of Drinking Water".

Perhaps I'm not alone. Perhaps this is why all of my tweeting genius has gone unheralded - diamonds hopelessly buried under the social-networking rough.

A couple of years ago, when Twitter was fresh and new, one of my hobbies was writing wry observational tweets that I decided had to adhere to two strict self-imposed rules: each had to use accepted 20th-century punctuation and had to be exactly 140 characters in length - no more, no less. Gems such as "My wife is on her way home from the salon with a very, very unwanted grey streak in her hair. I'm requesting a Code Red emergency evacuation."

Hilarious, right? Yet despite having more than 2,000 followers, that bòn mót got not one response or retweet - no doubt lost forever, drowned out by a cacophony of "are spa treatments right for you?" entries that inundate other feeds as much as they do mine.

The app

Fortunately, there's a smartphone app that can serve as a much better agent for your social networking creativity. GO HD (free; iPhone, iPad, soon on Android) gives you the ability to capture, record and comment on the world around you and then completely control your content's journey through the social-networking spectrum - you can deliver your funny cat video to the entire world anonymously or proudly present it to specific audiences such as your Facebook and, yes, even your Twitter friends.

The details

GO HD is nothing if not feature-rich, and learning all the bells and whistles can take the better part of a long weekend. It's perhaps best to stay off the stage at first and watch others in action, via constantly updating text, photos, and video (including live feeds) that are all marked by pins on an interactive map of the world.

You can "favourite" those creators who choose to identify themselves and also peruse content that other users have labelled as popular. Once you start to post items, you can keep track of them by hitting the "more" button at the bottom right of the screen.

Keep in mind that while your posts can be anonymous, any content you create will be geotagged with your phone's current location.

But that said, the next time you feel like broadcasting something to the world, try GO HD and don't be surprised if someone, somewhere actually pays attention.

Have some great personal finance apps that you want to share? Write to Curt Brandao at cbrandao@thenational.ae