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Sunday, August 12, 2012

BrewR


Well, I thought I was done with my software reviews. But, I was fooling around with a little Android tablet I had gotten awhile ago, and found a couple of free applications. One of them, called BrewR, works as well as my favorites.

When it starts up, you're greeted with a pretty standard screen, showing a list of recipes that are saved, and a few buttons at the top. By choosing “New Recipe”, you're brought to the start screen for a new beer. Choose your desired style by pressing the button, and picking from the list.

All the usual choices are available; two-row, extracts, crystal, color malts, hops, dry and liquid yeast. It also includes the little cartoon mug showing the approximate color of your beer. (I've found I really like that.) It also lets you know if you've hit the parameters for your chosen style, and there's a spot to include notes you might want to add.

The absolute coolest thing I like is the ability to save your recipe to Google Cloud, and print it when you get home. With this little tablet, you can work up a recipe while you're shopping, save it to the cloud, and have it ready to print when you get home. Ain't technology great?





Since it's available from the Android App Market, I'm pretty sure you could install it on your Android phone, also. I really like this, and I intend to try it out next time I'm shopping.



Sunday, August 5, 2012

Brewtarget


Today, we're looking at Brewtarget, a program available for Windows, Mac and Linux.

One very odd thing happened as I prepared to work with this program. I couldn't get it to run. My regular computer is an older Dell laptop running Windows Vista, so, it might be me, not the program.

I switched over to my backup, an even older machine running one of the many flavors of Linux. After I installed Brewtarget on that machine, it ran fine. What does this mean for you? Well, like anything in computers, it might not run for you.

It opens up to a screen much like Brew-Mate, with space to put in your fermentables, hops, yeast, and “other stuff”. One quirk I found which I didn't like was I could not specify the batch size. I was stuck between a 2-gal small batch or a 5-gal. I brew 4-gal batches, and have for years. This fact means the program, well, won't work for me. If you brew 2 or 5 gallons at a time, feel free to ignore me.

Although I couldn't replicate my standard recipe, I found the interface well-designed and easy to navigate. As with Brew-Mate, there's a graphic of a beer mug showing the approximate color of your beer.