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Old 08-04-2008, 07:45 PM   #1
Deofol
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Default iBrew - An iPhone Brew Log

Just wondering what kind of interest there would be for an “all in one” Brew Log, Timer, Brew Tools, and general home brewing application on the iPhone?

I'm doing iPhone development on the side, and for a first project to learn the API and objective C language, I am building a home brew log application. I'll use this post as a location to post progress and get ideas from forum users. I figured this would be something I would use personally and a fun way to encourage me to brew more as I progress over the development learning curve.

So far the basic premise is;

  • Brew Log
  • Brew Tools
  • General Options

The brew log will list your entire past brew sessions, tasting notes, images, bottling/kegging dates and notes, and allow you to copy/modify a session or "run" the session live. Later on perhaps the ability to email brew sessions or store them on a server or local machine for backup (or perhaps some kind of tie-in to HBT).

The idea is that instead of using kitchen timers and paper logs for grain/hop/adjunct additions, the brew session can be "run" as an active session. Ie. Design the brew and assign ingredients and then start the session. You would at this point have all the information about the brew in real time (ie. current est volume lost, est IBU, abv, etc).

First step for say an extract session would be to bring your temperature to 155 degrees to steep your grains, when this is hit, you press next and the timer starts for the steep. After grains are steeped, an alert notifies you to continue to the next step and add your extract. After you are at a boil you continue and that starts the timer for the hop schedules or adjuncts you have set up.

I also had an idea for a more "live session recording" mode where you would start the session and just record "when" and "what" you added as your brew session progressed. That way you have an accurate account to the second of what you did for a particular brew session and would be able to recall the details at a later time for evaluation. All of these metrics could then be easily used to dynamically generate in real time your ABV%, IBU, boil volume loss, etc as the timer progressed.

At the moment the application is just in a design phase, with UI being built, and gathering of ideas. So if this sounds like something that interest you, or you have ideas, please don’t hesitate to add them here. I would be excited to have your input!
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Old 08-04-2008, 07:53 PM   #2
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Just a note on scope.

I would like to keep this as simple and stright forward as posible. There are already hardcore brew tools out there (promash, beer smith, etc), this is not so much a replacement to detailed tools like those, but more as a helper tool for on the site brewing, time centric application, and step oriented...

It just seems that in the heat of the moment I always tend to forget a step or forget to record something as I brew. So think more as a brewing assistant than a hard core brewing application.

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Old 08-04-2008, 08:26 PM   #3
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I'd be interesed. I'm already using my iPhone stopwatch as my timer. Be nice to have something additional.

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Old 08-04-2008, 08:44 PM   #4
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What I really need as Im brewing are calculators. I find that I run back into the house to my software just for the calculators. Brix/OG, Temp adjustments, etc.

I made some notes and enter my end of brew day numbers back into my recipe when I am all done. I dont have a big need for actual brewing software as Im brewing, but calculators would be nice and maybe a nice checklist to make sure I stay on task when I drink too much when I'm brewing.

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Old 08-04-2008, 11:47 PM   #5
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A handy calculator would be great! When I preheat my mashtun, I always have to run in after getting the temp of the grains and strike water to make sure they'll even out to the right temp for my first infusion. A simple calculator would be handy to avoid trips back in! Also, the Brix/Gravity conversion tool would be nice for the same reason!! Great idea

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Old 08-06-2008, 08:56 PM   #6
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I like the original idea...WITH a calculator section!

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Old 08-07-2008, 01:09 AM   #7
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I also already use my iphone for a timer. If you could set it up to be completely programable and simple, it would be great.

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Old 08-07-2008, 03:01 AM   #8
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i don't know a whole lot about brewing, but i think your idea is great. I think you need to make sure you can backup any information entered via the iphone. Some kind of option to place all your brewing sessions into a txt file or document or something like that. That way any changes you make on the fly or are 'recorded' during your session are reflected and backed up onto your desktop or laptop. Just an idea.

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Old 08-07-2008, 01:56 PM   #9
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I also use the timer, but it would be nice to have a few extra features and calculators handy.

maybe programable alarms for 60/20/10/5 minute additions, and efficiency calculators, something to jot down quick notes about temps etc. and record measurements.

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Old 08-07-2008, 05:33 PM   #10
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Would it be possible to sync with popular brewing software? I'm not sure how standardized the file formats and types of files the programs create but that would be helpful if it copied brew sessions from your iPhone to whatever program you were using. Or, sync recipies you created on your computer with you iphone and then after a brew session sync the "actual results" such as actual FG and actual OG etc back to you computer. Hopefully that could be done directly into the program(s) but maybe atleast to a text file that plopped on the desktop.

Good luck!

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