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Try Flora's Handy new tool and let us know what you think - you could win a £200 John Lewis voucher. NOW CLOSED

(67 Posts)
AngelieMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 13-Dec-13 10:01:26

Flora have just released a new browser based video player, Handy, that lets you control YouTube videos with a wave of a hand and they've asked us to find out what Mumsnetters' think of it.

Here's what Flora have to say: "Whipping up a storm and having fun in the kitchen is has just become even easier, thanks to the arrival of our new recipe player; Handy by Flora. Using specially designed gesture-control technology, Handy by Flora lets you pause, play and rewind any video you can find on YouTube with a simple wave of the hand."

Head to, making sure you’re using a laptop with a webcam, copy the YouTube URL of the video you want to follow and get started.

So, what do you think of Handy? Did you find it easy to use? Would you find it useful for playing and following recipe videos? What other gadgets would you like to make baking easier?

Whatever you think about Handy, Flora would love to hear about it.

Everyone who posts on this thread will be entered into a prize draw where one winner will receive a £200 John Lewis voucher.

Please note your comments may be included on Flora's social media channels, and possibly elsewhere, so please only post if you're comfortable with this.

Thanks and good luck,

PS - Handy by Flora is free to use and currently works on laptops through Chrome browsers only. There are plans to support other devices and web browsers soon.

WaitingForPeterWimsey Fri 13-Dec-13 20:10:40

Wow - will look at this now grin

sharond101 Sat 14-Dec-13 21:53:12

This is a great idea but I would have liked the ingredients list before the video played as how am I to know if I have all the correct ingredients before start?

My Niece loved the hand movements to play and rewind. The video was too fast to follow properly (mince pies).

Limited at the moment with only 2 recipes. I

CMOTDibbler Sat 14-Dec-13 22:02:41

Thats really neat! I often scribble down recipes as I don't want to get gunk on my work laptop, and it would make following more complicated instructions easy

PaschasDanglyReindeerBaubles Mon 16-Dec-13 09:15:25

Doesn't detect my webcam. I might try and find out why later, maybe.

rootypig Mon 16-Dec-13 10:06:55

Brilliant idea! Feedback:

Would be nice if it were an app that worked for any video
Slow the video down, to take into account people having their hands full / kids
More useful on a tablet, that 's what I take into the kitchen with me

SpicedTeaAndXmasCakeOrDeath Mon 16-Dec-13 12:13:14

I agree, a little too fast but DS loved playing with it and therefore 'helping' me in the kitchen so I like it for that...

MrsClauswearsspanx Mon 16-Dec-13 12:52:37

Yep I also found it a little too fast as I'm constantly shifting my busy-body 9 month old around. But great, great idea!

DinoSnores Mon 16-Dec-13 13:43:38

I liked it and could see myself using it on a whole host of Youtube videos. It wasn't as responsive as I would have hoped for, but I wonder whether the room was just a bit too dark and it might have worked better if more lights had been on!

ReastieYuleANBU Mon 16-Dec-13 15:54:38

I have no idea what it is as I can't get the link to work sad I assume this is something to do with the chrome thing as I have a macbook with safari [clueless]

addictedtosugar Mon 16-Dec-13 19:38:57

Using a laptop, with webcam, and running chrome.
Just get a blank screen.
Any further technical requirements?

NettleTea Mon 16-Dec-13 20:03:55

Great idea!
really simple to use

KnitActually Mon 16-Dec-13 21:21:27

Nice idea, but I didn't know people followed youtube recipes, how tedious to have to watch the whole thing. I always browse the written recipes.

loubielou31 Tue 17-Dec-13 00:19:49

Very clever, easy to use just don't wave too fast.
I guess it works on all instructional videos, (I'll try it) might be good for make up tutorials or other jobs when you've hands might be too muck to be touching the screen. Or even hair styles.

loubielou31 Tue 17-Dec-13 00:29:12

Yep, it works.

I don't use YouTube on a pc so no good for me. I use my mobile for cooking in the kitchen- takes up less space

SarahJessicaFarter Tue 17-Dec-13 11:53:51

Great idea, so simple to use. Looking forward to more recipes. Really at home with this tech since buying a Smart TV, so love it!

AnnaConda Tue 17-Dec-13 12:23:09

<wipes flour off iPad>

Great idea.

Also, Dh was following a YouTube video at the weekend to make an electrical repair and this would have been useful while having his hands full of tools etc.

ouryve Tue 17-Dec-13 12:34:57

I gave up. It would have been quicker to wipe a pinky finger clean and press a button. Or, rather, touch the screen as I tend to do with the iPad. I had to try the gesture several times to get the video to start. I stopped it by accident, scratching my nose, then, when I eventually got it started again, couldn't stop it at all.

Aside from all that faff, I'm perfectly capable of following a written recipe, or even memorising one, anyhow.

Jinty64 Tue 17-Dec-13 23:00:01

Great idea! I currently use the I-pad for cooking but I could be converted.

Kipsy Wed 18-Dec-13 10:08:39

What a fantastic idea! I really really needed this.

I try out at least one new recipe a week, and prefer using video recipes to book/written recipes.

Somehow they all seem to be involve me getting my hands wet/dirty. The frequent pausing or replaying has led to my laptop being covered in crumbs, oil etc - my laptop mouse and keyboard gave up the ghost ages ago, and I am now on a USB keyboard AND mouse.

My mouse thanks you! Squeak!

manfalou Wed 18-Dec-13 11:58:16

Great idea! No one wants to get floury fingers on the keyboards and this is the answer. Much better than using recipe books too but wasn't as responsive as I would have liked.

CheeseTMouse Wed 18-Dec-13 12:34:16

I like the idea, but wouldn't want my laptop in the kitchen (I have a tendency to spill things) and so I am more likely to use this if it was compatible with my phone.

asuwere Wed 18-Dec-13 16:38:38

I didn't really like it - it took quite a few attempts to get the video to play, I found I really had to be in just the right place for it to work. I can't imagine ever needing to watch a video while cooking - it seems easy enough to follow a written recipe.

I also don't really have anywhere in my kitchen to put my laptop.

Willemdefoeismine Wed 18-Dec-13 17:13:26

It's a fun idea in theory - my DD loved it - a bit too quirky for me though....I'm not sure you would want eggs, milk, etc....all over the laptop - maybe when the laptop is a flat skin tile on the kitchen wall! I think it's almost ahead of the technology!

MollyBerry Wed 18-Dec-13 18:34:42

I couldn't get this to work but YouTube and recipes don't work for me. I much prgrinter things written down and as a plus having photo steps. The only time I really YouTube is for something crafty that's got a complicated movement in it

lorka Wed 18-Dec-13 19:21:44

Not able to try out though as I have safari but it sounds like a great idea. I often use my phone to look up recipe ideas. grin

Fairylea Wed 18-Dec-13 19:29:53

Great idea in theory but I found it all a massive faff. Just as quick to wipe a finger on a tea towel and carry on as normal. Sorry !

atomicYuleLoghurt Wed 18-Dec-13 19:58:03

What a great idea! No more gunk on my screen!

Snoozie101 Wed 18-Dec-13 21:24:05

It needs to work with tablets not laptops as most people have these in preference now.

daisydaisy11 Wed 18-Dec-13 21:58:35

Nice idea -great not to have to touch laptop when cooking -shame we get no wifi in our kitchn!

boptanana Wed 18-Dec-13 22:05:51

Good idea in theory but would be more useful on iPad or iPhone as I have very little work surface to spare in kitchen. I found the controls a bit temperamental but this may have been my webcam.

that big hand is a bit scary, a good idea that does not work that well, although teenage girl liked it more than i did.

Cherryjellybean Thu 19-Dec-13 07:52:55

Neither laptops have google chrome in our house otherwise I would have loved to have tried it!
I usually get written recipes on my phone and loads of gloop normally gets on there. So I love the idea!

VivaLeBeaver Thu 19-Dec-13 08:26:09

Its easy to use and would be ideal for cooking if it worked on iPads. I use my ipad as my recipe book so usually have it in the kitchen when cooking. Don't really have the space when I'm cooking with stuff everywhere for my laptop.

flamingtoaster Thu 19-Dec-13 09:35:21

Great idea. I haven't ever used videos in the kitchen but this would make it more likely that I would. My daughter who is slowly expanding her culinary skill really liked it. I think Flora may have found the answer to getting teenagers and young adults to cook! Would be fantastic for craft or DIY videos too.

SnowyMouse Thu 19-Dec-13 11:13:46

It wasn't as responsive to the gestures as I would have liked. Good idea though.

OhYouMerryLittleKitten Thu 19-Dec-13 11:18:20

I wish I could use it on my ipad sad laptops are way too big for the kitchen.

RemoteControlGeekToyOfTheYear Thu 19-Dec-13 11:36:53

My laptop lives in our kitchen diner, and DP is itching to try this out with a recipe. We've just had a brilliant few minutes where I introduced him to the hand gestures!

I've also used this for a hair style tutorial this morning because I have found that I can get the video to play/pause by moving my head instead of my hands, meaning I can have both hands occupied with pins/curlers/clips etc and still control the video.

Inadvertent movements do unfortunately trigger the play/pause functions so will have to wait and see how it fares when DP cooks something later, and moves around the kitchen to do so.

butterflymum Thu 19-Dec-13 12:54:36

Another one in the....."oops, arghhhh, nooooo....quick, get me a cloth, there's a splodge of cake mix flown off my hand and onto the screen..." camp.

Maybe a special, clear but protective cover to place over the laptop first, that doesn't stop the webcam working or obscure the view of the screen, could be offered as a promotional freebie to promote the Handy service.

Novel idea in first place, though, just needs some tweeking.

It's a nice idea, but I don't seem to be able to get it to work reliably. However I generally use written recipes - book or internet, not videos and I have no desire to change to video recipes. Wouldn't this be more appropriate for those with limited literacy?

I tend to use my laptop to listen to the radio or watch on demand TV while I cook.

Linfer Thu 19-Dec-13 20:23:09

Great idea, would not have occurred to me before to use video recipes. But like many others have said, I would much prefer this on a tablet as that is what I take into the kitchen too. My laptop is far too big and clunky for my tiny kitchen space.

MmeCinqAnneauxDor Fri 20-Dec-13 11:40:21

Good idea, but I don't have space in the kitchen for a laptop. It would have to work on iPad for me to use it.

snorris Fri 20-Dec-13 13:47:09

Nice idea but I got frustrated with it very quickly. In order to get it to play I found my movement had to be very slow and precise, it took several attempts to pause it and I couldn't get it to rewind at all. Maybe it's me/my laptop but it would have been quicker to find a recipe and write it out by hand! wink.

My kitchen isn't really big enough to accommodate a laptop either so even if I could get it to work I doubt I would use it tbh.

SaltySeaBird Fri 20-Dec-13 19:02:56

It really is a great idea and the website and presentation of it is very polished.

However, I don't have room on the kitchen worktop for my laptop and I would never follow a recipe along on YouTube live in that manner.

My laptop isn't working at the moment after toddler related accident and I won't get one until the new year so I've been unable to test it with a webcam but I do think anything like this needs to be mobile device compatible.

Top marks for ingenuity and presentation though!

MoogDroog Sat 21-Dec-13 22:29:31

I love the idea of this. Love it. However, it doesn't work on my ipad. Tells me to try on a desktop instead - there's no way I'm wheeling that monstrousity into the kitchen!

VirtuallyThere Wed 25-Dec-13 23:09:45

it sounds great. I couldn't try it on my laptop though as it doesn't work on safari.

FrankAndFurt Sun 29-Dec-13 01:35:23

Great idea in theory but why not just put cling film over your laptop or ipad or whatever and use the usual controls. I am sorry but I wouldn't use it. Also, for the kabillion of us who are surgically attached to our iPads and other tablets, then it's no good.

Clingfilm is your friend grin

annieno1 Sun 29-Dec-13 20:47:33

class idea

unquietmind Sun 29-Dec-13 22:00:29

I do not risk laptop in the kitchen so would need to be able to use it on my webcam enabled tablet

unquietmind Sun 29-Dec-13 22:01:00

I do not risk laptop in the kitchen so would need to be able to use it on my webcam enabled tablet

HazeltheMcWitch Tue 31-Dec-13 13:10:07

The idea sounds good - a bit gimmicky, but so what.
But actually it was more of a faff than (as pp have posted) - just wiping a finger and pressing a control. it seemed to rewind when I did not want it to and not when I did, so I found it quite annoying.

But I would probably try similar again, once glitches have been ironed out a bit more and there are more recipes.

My teenage DD loved this, she is to lazy to look for a recipe in a book, agree that it is a bit to quick, and the pausing led to messy keyboard but it was her laptop so not my problem.

StillNoFuckingEyeDeer Tue 31-Dec-13 19:10:05

Nice idea, but in practice I'll continue to use scribbled recipe notes on a scrap of paper or a cookery book in the kitchen. I didn't feel comfortable with the laptop in the kitchen. I might use my phone or a tablet, but not the laptop again. We just don't really have the space.

I find instruction videos much more useful for DIY type projects, particularly techniques I've never seen or done before. Most recipes are simple enough to follow at the level I cook at.

RockinAroundTheXmasTreeHippy Wed 01-Jan-14 04:49:04

Another here running chrome on iPad & getting a blank screen sad

IsabellaRockerfeller Wed 01-Jan-14 13:00:44

Fantastic idea.

However, my laptop keypad got filthy so won't be using the site again!

Plus it did not pick up some of my hand movements.

It is actually quicker for me to get my trusty old recipe book down and cook something out of that. Or to pull up a new recipe on my laptop or print it off, no need to interact with the laptop once that's done.

It's a good idea in principle, but it needs to work on tablets, as they are the device that gets used in the kitchen - anything with a keyboard is much too vulnerable even if the webcam weren't disabled on my work laptop . The main reason I print recipes rather than working off tablet or phone is that the screen always locks just as you need to look at something - and if it could be unlocked by a hand gesture it would be a bit pointless, really.

So thanks, Flora, but I will carry on printing recipes and/or using the 4 cupboards of cookery books we possess.

CrewElla Thu 02-Jan-14 11:04:37

It's an interesting idea but I found it didn't work very smoothly for me. I ended up have to wave my hand several times to get the video to start or rewind.

I think a more useful application would be voice activated and not motion sensitive.

Personally I don't have enough free counter space in the kitchen for my laptop and the kitchen is far enough away from the router that I think responsiveness would be further degraded.

I prefer to use printed material for recipes and I don't have the need to be able to watch videos whilst cooking or baking.

ShatnersBassoon Thu 02-Jan-14 11:41:40

It's a bit of a gimmick. You still have to have your laptop there where you're baking, so it will get dusted with flour etc even if you don't touch it. I won't use it.

glammanana Fri 03-Jan-14 11:30:10

Why has this not been thought of before now ? and certainly would prefer for it to available on tablet, note to self : don't wave to OH as he comes down the hall to kitchen !!,would be good to have check-list for ingredients prior to starting but overall brilliant concept as it would free up space taken up by cookery books.

HamletsSister Fri 03-Jan-14 18:39:23

Clever idea and worked fairly well but I am usually quite happy with floury recipe books / iPad so I am not sure how much I will use it. However, if the recipes are good, then it will come into its own.

TheDietStartsTomorrow Sat 04-Jan-14 09:03:08

A great idea that just needs to be developed further so there's an inclusion of more recipes. Writing recipes down in advance is a bit tedious for me and a video to stop and start as you go along is much better because I can actually see that my ingredients are looking like they are supposed. I follow a lot of video recipes so the number of phones and laptops that are grubby from kitchen fingertips is embarrassing.

OPeaches Sat 04-Jan-14 20:13:30

Cool! Love it. Would love to see it used for more. Brilliant technology.

WheresTheCoffee Sun 05-Jan-14 07:14:42

That sounds like a good idea, I always end up getting ingredients all over my ipad when I'm cooking!

Lovewhereilive Sun 05-Jan-14 08:01:56

Love it! What a great idea.

It's an interesting idea, but pretty poor in the execution. It didn't pick up hand signals very well at all. To be honest I use Pinterest most of the time for collecting recipes and wouldn't have a laptop in the kitchen - I much prefer using my Kindle or tablet.

shoom Sun 05-Jan-14 18:37:07

Good idea, worth pursuing.

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