The last weekend of winter is nearly here! Here are the best iPad apps of the week. Dig in!
The Converted: This is a highly visual conversion app that actually gives you a sense of the proportions between the conversions being made. Rather than typing a number and getting another one spit back at you, you adjust, slide, and pinch the screen until you're around where you need to be. It's not absolutely precise, but it gives you a greater general comprehension. Plus, the next time you hear a number in an unfamiliar unit, you won't be totally blind to what that actually means, which is always a nice thing. $2.99.
Blackbar: This PRISM-inspired game takes you on an adventure as the character Vi, who's attempting correspondence with a sister that works at the fictional Department of Communications. Given the nature of her position, many of your sister's letters end up censored by the time you get your hands on them, so it's up to you to try to decode the mysteries hidden within. Tap blacked out words to fill in what you think the missing piece might be, and if you're right, the black bar goes away and things (hopefully) to start to get a little more clear. $2.99.
ReadQuick: Speeds up reading by cutting out all the distractions. And we mean all of them: ReadQuick only shows you one word at a time. No ads, no links, no page breaks, no nothin'. You can adjust the speed anywhere between 100 and 800 WPM. Once you've found a pace that's right for you, hook up Pocket, Instapaper, or any number of specialised news and tech sites to get a single-word feed that should speed you through your "to-read" pile. The app also tells you how long it'll take you to read a certain article or group of articles, so you'll always have the right reading material for your pocket of free time. $4.49.
Parallels Access: Turns your iPad into a porthole to your more powerful (and heavier) Windows or Mac computers somewhere else. Connecting the your iPad to your remote machine through the cloud is the (relatively) easy part. The real magic is how Parallels Access elegantly shrinks your desktop applications into manageable tablet apps. It runs on iPad 2 or later, and it can connect to computers running OS X 1.7+ or Windows 7+ via access agent software. $80 annual subscription per computer.