The number of devices that measure for us seems to be exploding. Who'd a thunk it? I'm pleased with the iPhone apps SeeLevel and its use of the iPhone camera(it can serve as a densitometer) and I also like their SeeCompass. I'm less sure about the much touted Spyglass app. It gets rave reviews, but the screen is so busy and the characters are so small, I can't read the returns. It's not a matter of practice or new glasses. I need new eyes.
So let's see, as dendromorphometrists, what do we have in our measuring kit these days?
(1) Infrared laser rangefinder
(2) Red beam industrial laser
(4) Compasses -old fashion and digital
(5) Hypsometer combining (1) and (3) or (1), (3), and (4)
(6) Reticle monocular
(7) Regular tape measure
(9) Plumb bob
(12) Flagging tape
(14) Biltmore stick
(15) Digital camera
(19) Scientific calculator
(20) GPS receiver
(21) Computer software
(22) An iPhone 4 or later with abundant apps that do the jobs of most of the above.
Have I left anything out? Probably, but all the beginner really needs is the laser rangefinder, inclinometer, tape, and scientific calculator, -OR- increasingly, the iPhone. Ah, life is sooo good when we have lot's of neat gizmos to play with, or an iPhone. Who'd a thunk it?
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder and Executive Director
Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest