June 12, 2011

Kid Tracks: Nudging tech-heads outside: There are apps for that

By WENDY ALMEIDA

(Continued from page 1)

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Star Walk

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MyNature Animal Tracks

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Currently available on iPhone and Android. Cost: $4.99; a bundle of four Audubon guides (wildflowers, birds, mammals and trees) is available for $29.99. 

• EveryTrail from GlobalMotion Media Inc.: This app from Everytrail.com offers a way to remember -- and share -- outdoor adventures by creating your own interactive trip map.

Everytrail allows you to plot pictures and add notes and commentary about the trail as well as record the distance traveled, speed and elevation gain.

It's an easy interface that prompts you to "start tracking" and doesn't require any GPS know-how.

The application has a built-in camera, so while you're out on the trail you can snap some photos and they will be automatically plotted on your final map based on the GPS coordinates at the time you snapped it. You can also follow other people's trail maps.

You need an active cell tower signal for the free version of this app. The upgrade to "Pro" allows you to save trail maps to the phone for use offline, as well as upload video to plot on maps you create.

Currently available on iPhone and Android. Cost: Free for basic version, $3.99 for Pro. 

• WildLab Bird from Mediated Spaces Inc.: Schools use this app, designed with the citizen scientist in mind, as an educational tool.

WildLab Bird allows users to collect scientific data -- location, time and bird species -- and save a report of each sighting.

The guide begins with asking what kind of area you are in -- woodland, coastal, wetland or grassland -- and then a roundup of birds you might see in that environment is offered. For instance, in the coastal environment the bird options include "warbler-like," "gull-like," etc.

Once a species type is narrowed down, individual bird pages include audio bird calls, range map and the option to save your notes about the sighting.

This app is a basic birding guide that offers an educational experience as kids collect scientific data and share with others through social networking. No cell tower connection is required to use the guide. Logged sightings can be stored in the app until a connection can be made.

Currently available for free on iPhone only.

Staff Writer Wendy Almeida can be contacted at 791-6334 or at:

wea@mainetoday.com

Follow her on Twitter at:

Twitter.com/RaisingMaine

 

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WildLab Bird

  


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