Your Own Well-Dressed Meteorologist

By Joshua Mikutis

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As Shaun has directed our attention toward the possibilities of sharing Apps purchased in the Mac App store, this seems like an ideal time to direct your attention toward one of my favorite Apps available. swackett, billed as “a different kind of weather app,” takes its name from parts of the words “sweater, jacket or coast?”

Their premise is that weather reporting need not be a convoluted affair with real-time maps and multi-colored formations that those of us who did not attend meteorological school cannot understand. Rather, a weather reporting device ought to answer that simple question: should I wear a sweater, jacket, or coat? To our great fortune, swackett is free.

Created by AGLogic, a design company whose motto “Complex information made simple” says it all, swackett presents the weather in a crisp highly stylized format. Based on the present weather of your city, swackett’s people symbols (nicknamed “peeps”—they are delightfully akin to the images that dictate which bathroom we should enter) will dress accordingly. If it is an incredibly cold day, you will see your swackett peeps dressed with heavy jackets, mittens, and winter hats. If it is a pleasantly warm day, they will be adorned with t-shirts and shorts.

swackett even makes room for all the nuance that weather allows. For instance, today in Dayton, Ohio is unpleasantly cold but surprisingly sunny. Thus, my swackett peeps hae the normal winter wear but are also sporting some fashionable shades.

With Swackett, one quick glance at your screen will allow you to don whatever clothes are necessary for that day. For those of you more inclined to favor figures and maps, Swackett does prevent hour-by-hour temperate updates and those occasionally helpful radar maps.

Obeying Shakespeare’s prescription that “brevity is the soul of wit,” Swackett’s weather descriptions are pleasantly direct and descriptive. Tomorrow’s weather is described as “not as cool with times of clouds and sun.” Such colloquial descriptions are helpful for our fast-paced lives and allow us to parse through information as quickly as possible.

Swackett includes upgrades that can contribute to your viewing experience. Currently, your free download comes with “Standard Edition” and “Modern Edition.” But for the slim price of $1.29, you can upgrade to have characters with aesthetics of “the 1950s” or “the British Invasion.” With other editions on the way, swackett provides an enjoyably, customizable experience. Whether or not it’s actually necessary to shell out the $1.29 to see your weather report dressed up in Beatlesesque clothing is up to you.

But swackett provides fun for free with their Easter Eggs that dress up your peeps for special events. For example, Presidents’ Day sported peeps as George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and Thomas Jefferson. Additionally, swackett honors a variety of other Americans—with peeps as Michael Jordan, Jimi Hendrix and the Breakfast Club characters in honor of John Hughes.

At the moment, swackett is available for Macs and can also be accessed through a Web App. iPhone and iPad Apps are on the way. For a free app, this is a must have for its visual features and for the way in which it will simplify your life.

Download swackett for free at the Mac App store.

 

About Joshua Mikutis
Josh is an avid reader and a mediocre musician. He appreciates the iPad's ability to make him look both productive and interesting.

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