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March 11, 2011

The App Burrito: Volume 2 - Getting Schooled

Smartphones are not only a great place to play games and listen to music. They can also be portable learning centers. I use mine for just about everything, and as a later-in-life student, I have found several apps that serve as excellent reference material. It doesn't matter if you're studying astronomy, law, math or history. There is an app to help you through all of it. These are a few of my favorites.

United States Constitution

We hear plenty about our Constitution these days. The problem is that most of the people that swing it over their heads have never read it. This app not only brings you the constitution, it breaks it down by Preamble, Articles and Amendments. It lists the signatories, gives a history and even lists failed Amendments. The app also provides a variety of complete documents such as the Declaration of Independence, The Articles of Confederation and the Miranda Warning. You can also read important speeches such as the Liberty or Death speech, the Gettysburg Address and I Have a Dream. The app is simple yet spectacular, and every American should have it. It's absolutely free, so there's just no excuse not to own it.

Google Sky Map

I'm no stargazer, but I do like a sky freckled with burning balls of gas. If you're interested in what you're looking at, this app might be for you. When you open the app, you only need to point the phone at what you're looking at in order to find out what the constellations and star names are. The app is simple. It works in any direction at any time of day. There's a time travel option that lets you see the sky on any date and at any time. I don't know why you would even do this. It seems like a useless option to me. It's okay for the casual glance, but that's about it.


The accuracy of Wikipedia is often subject, but if you want to get some probably okay information fast, this is the place to go. The app version is very cool. Is separates all of the sections into a table of contents, and it even has separate links to the photos and all of the sections of the page. You can bookmark any page. When you open the app, a random page of the day is displayed.


This is a great app for any students in the legal field. It lists procedures for different areas of the court. It includes civil, criminal, appellate, bankruptcy and evidence procedures. It includes a feed that lists legal news and popular law blogs. All of the procedural sections are broken down and easier to search. Overall, it's a pretty nice app.


If you need a scientific calculator, this is definitely the app for you. I'll admit that I have no idea how to use it, which isn't good for my algebra class, but it looks just like a Texas Instruments calculator. I'm sure it's awesome, I think.

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