The great thing about software platforms is that you never know what's going to spring up. Engineering and marketing a good platform is like grabbing a sample of wildflower seeds and tossing them out in the garden: who knows what beautiful creations will happen?
As a case in point, my gnarly gearheads, witness Dynolicious, an extremely tasty app for the iPhone. When I was a boy (pre-Web, in case you were wondering), my feed for all things automotive was Car & Driver magazine, with the great David E. Davis at the helm. What a wonderous world it was for this 9-year-old kid. In particular, I loved looking at the complex data measurement test rigs that C&D's engineers hung off the sides and backs of cars, all in the name of grabbing that 0-60 time. They usually consisted of a computer, a recording device, and multiple sensors, including a fifth wheel touching the ground. Just imagine, then, having all that data gathering power -- and much, much more -- at your disposal in an iPhone. Using the motion, location, and acceleration intelligence built in to the iPhone, Dynolicious gives you maps of g-forces, time-to-distance, and elapsed time.
I can't wait to try it out:
Plus, since it is all on the phone, there's no need to confine it to automotive use. Theoretically you could use it to map performance profiles on your bike, motorcycle, roller blades, horse, 747, jumping off the roof -- whatever.
How gnarly is that?