App Makes iPad "Mini-HUD"

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An Oregon app developer has come up with a unique solution to the problem of spotting unfamiliar airports from the air. Paul Mace is offering ARPort, which he says turns an iPad, iPod or iPhone into a "mini-HUD" that displays pushpin locations of airports within 25 miles in the field of view of the device's camera. The pilot or front seat passenger points the camera through the windshield and all the applicable airports show on the screen as pushpins. Move the selection icon under the pushpin to get distance and heading and tap on the icons to get airport information.

Mace said the idea for the app grew out of a conversation with a fellow pilot about the frustration of not being able to find airports from the air. Mace said it took a few months of research and fiddling to get the app to work and it still has some limitations. While in the air it may need an external GPS like BadElf or Dual to work properly. It also only works in the U.S. and its territories, although expanding its horizons is under consideration.