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Android App Reviews Tricorder

The Tricorder app for the Android gets a lot of exclamation points! This thing turns your Android into a working device that is styled to look and sound just like the devices from the original “Star Trek” television show.

Developed by Ian Cameron Smith of headstay, with apologies to Jeff Jetton and Gene Roddenberry, this free app is an open project where the code can be developed and worked on by anyone.

The app pulls in data from the Android’s sensors, and there are a lot of Android sensors! They even measure acceleration, the local magnetic field and the acoustics around us.

The Tricorder app also pulls in location data from different providers and checks the wi-fi and cell signal strength.

Finally, this little gem actually gives up current pictures of the sun along with current measurements of solar wind and the state of the sun.

The control buttons go down the left side of the tricorder screen to allow changes to the viewing screen. There are Grav and Mag, Acoustic, EMS, Geo and Solar screens.

The “scan” button actually scans the magnetic and gravity fields!

The list of scientific and other details go on and on, making non scientists wonder what they would ever use the tricorder for.

There is a lot for the non scientist! The acoustic screen will show the actual sound levels in real time! This is helpful when in loud restaurants, at concerts and in other situations where we want to know if we need earplugs or to go elsewhere for a romantic or business dinner. Or, for identifying that odd sound in the engine and the weird, repetitive bump in the night, this feature alone is priceless!

The Geo screen has a working compass, will tell about the location of the cell or wi fi network, provide the actual GPS location, the altitude and the accuracy of the GPS fix.

It will tell the direction that you are moving in and give your speed! This is important for managing progress toward a destination.

The only caveat relates to the quality and reliability of the smart phone’s sensors, especially in measuring the magnetic fields and vibrations that may affect the gravity readings.

There is an extensive help and “About” Tricorder menu, with links to a couple of articles about Jeff Jetton and Ion Cameron’s gems of Tricording excellence!

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars!

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