Outdoor apps | c’t uplink 38.0

c’t uplink #38 | Outdoor-Apps

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Nature awakens; Spring is here! The trees are sprouting, there is buzzing and chirping between stalks and branches. Nature invites you to discover and people should accept the invitation. The smartphone helps to find the optimal route, poses playful challenges, recognizes wildflowers and bird calls, warns of extreme weather and calls for help in an emergency.

The pocket computer becomes so versatile thanks to clever apps that use GPS receivers, position sensors, cameras and microphones for their services. That works surprisingly well and without additional hardware from the expensive iPhone to the Android bargain under 200 euros.

Kim Sartorius has tested many apps for tours with two-wheelers, backpacks or running shoes. They mostly use the excellent map material from OpenStreepMap, which also knows small paths. Along these, they plan tours to sights and idyllic insider tips. In the field, they help to find the planned paths and motivate with statistics on distance, altitude and speed. Away from home, routes recommended by other users help in planning the excursion.

So that it doesn’t turn into a nightmare in the Alps, there are warning apps against extreme weather and unexpected snow fields. Emergency call apps can send the location determined by GPS directly to the rescue services and name places to which rescuers can get more easily. Andrea Trinkwalder explains which apps you should install for safety.

Holger Bleich walks on the path of knowledge, because the apps he tested recognize plants, butterflies and bird calls. This turns the excursion into the countryside into an educational adventure – especially for children. Fernsicht fans can also use augmented reality to name the peaks around the viewpoint and friends of the night can have the constellations explained to them.

If you still don’t feel like going out, you can be motivated by the games that Jo Bager tested. Geocaching invites you to go on a real treasure hunt. The “caches” are symbolic treasures, often hidden in small Tupperware jars, which must be found. With Ingress you can throw yourself into the virtual battle between green and blue: In the game you have to conquer portals with your smartphone for one of the two colors and compete against and with thousands of other players around the world. The highlight: You really have to walk to the portal to be able to conquer it. Pokémon Go works in a very similar way, in which you catch and tame virtual monsters in the real world and let them compete against other players’ Pokémons in virtual arenas.

Also present: Andrea Trinkwalder, Kim Sartorius, Holger Bleich, Jo Bager and Pina Merkert

The c’t 12/2021 is available at the kiosk in Browser and in the c’t app for iOS and Android.

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By the way: our new one YouTube-Channel c’t 3003 is now available for subscription; In the current episode, Jan-Keno Janssen transferred his consciousness to the computer – much to the amusement of the c’t editors.

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