CoolTechStuff: Theodolite 5.0


Larry Mortimer, AIA

Here’s an “augmented reality” app that’s been around since 2009. If you remember, I reviewed this app in the December 2010 issue of ArchNews (we didn’t call it “augmented reality” back then). It’s one of my favorite apps, and since I use all the time I thought we should take look at the latest version2pp6

What Does It Do: Theodolite is an app for iOS devices that overlays information such as date/time, azimuth, bearing, altitude, elevation angle, horizon angle and more on your device’s screen (it’s like a heads up display on a jet airplane). It also functions as a
compass, two-axis inclinometer, rangefinder, GPS, map, nav calculator, tracker and geo-tag photo/movie camera.

pp6System Requirements: An iPhone, camera equipped iPod, iPad or iPad mini running iOS 7.0 or later. iPads use the Theodolite HD version.

What does it cost: Theodolite and Theodolite HD are both $5.99.

How Does it Work: Theodolite overlays geographical, positional, date/time, and custom data directly on your iOS device’s screen. Screens can be saved for later reference and shared via text messages or email. In map view you can see your current position and with the optional outdoors maps, topo contours (feet or meters), roads, trails, and other landmarks are also shown. Custom “live” map markers continually update distance/head-ing relative to the current location. Theodolite also includes features such as reference angle mode,
a nav calculator, data logging, e-mail export, clipboard integration, percent grade display, compass readout, optical rangefinders, and colored lens filters (for night vision). The app can show location in military grid reference system (MGRS) coordinates, universal transverse Mercator (UTM) coordinates, British/Irish National Grids, US National Grid, and six latitude/longitude formats.

Pros: It’s inexpensive, has a cool interface and is very easy to use.3pp6

Cons: It only runs on iOS devices, however Dioptra and Theodolite Droid are similar apps that run on Android devices.

Conclusion: You will be amazed at the amount of information you can easily document with this app. This is a mature, refined app
that’s been around a while. If you watched Apple’s last Special Event Keynote, you would have seen Theodolite used in the presentation.

4pp6More Information at:

Purchase at:

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