Tech Talk: What’s with all the apps?

Pennsylvania State Parks & Forests Pocket Ranger®

It seems the moment humans finally mastered the art of folding mile-long paper maps, Global Positioning Systems hit the market and digitized navigation for good. (In turn making this newfound skill practically obsolete.) While pursists resisted this new technology most embraced the simpler way to get around and happily shelled triple digits for a personal handheld GPS device. It’s been more than two decades since GPS technology was introduced and drastically shaped the way we explore our surroundings.

As Government Technology recently reported the proliferation of smartphones in our society has rendered a new market: mobile apps. The ubiquity of these devices combined with our general dependency on GPS navigation has carved a space for mobile tour guide apps, much in way of our own Pocket Ranger®.

But do mobile apps have a place in the public sector? Moreover, do mobile apps have a place in our parks? As purveyors of state park mobile apps, Pocket Ranger® stands behind the power of technology to transform an ordinary experience and enhance it to be safer, highly education and more meaningful to all. Many of the bloggers we’ve featured tout the importance of using mobile apps outdoors while others eschew not just the question but also the need for technology altogether.

But what do our users think? We want to hear from you! Comment below with your experiences using technology outdoors. What are some of your favorite apps? What features could you do with out? What’s missing in the market?

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