Since the idea of Apple's iPad was announced, I thought it could be used to replace a Jamar Count Board. I even emailed a few companies who had tally counter apps for the iPhone to see if they had any interest in working with me to develop an App that would replicate the count board. Those emails went nowhere.
Imagine my surprise when I got an email this week from Gary Shoup of TrafData letting me know about his Turn Count App. He stole my idea! Actually, he had the same idea but he's added a bunch of features which appear to greatly improve the old fashioned count board.
- It will automatically tie gps coordinates to your data.
- Instead of downloading, it just emails you the data file (and your customer if you want) when you push end.
- It configures for tee intersections, removing the unnecessary buttons.
- It counts trucks with a simple double tap.
- You can count pedestrians going in both directions in a crossing.
- Most impressively, he's developed an alternative to the push button. In Hyper Interface mode, you use a sliding motion to mimic the cars.
I think the Hyper Interface could be amazing. But really, this is going to kill the traditional count board because it replaces an expensive count board ($1000+ for Jamar, $400+ for MicroTally) for $39.99. Of course you need a $199 iPhone or $499 iPad. Darn – it's way cheaper, more features, and the device is multi-purpose.
This forced me to make the painful decision to order an iPhone 4g so I can test out the App. I'll let you know how it works. I'm sure Turn Count will have a bug or two, but thislooks like the future (of course this could all be supplanted by automated video data collection – see Miovision, but I think we're a few years away from that due to the pricing models).
In the meantime, check out Gary's video about Turn Count –