Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start of the summer season. But for many Long Islanders it is the official start to backyard barbecue season. These apps can help you become a master of the grill.
(iOS, Android; $0.99)
The app features continually updated recipes and tips for all types of barbecue favorites while offering a large selection of eye-catching photos to whet your appetite as the grill is heating up. You can save your favorite recipes for quick access. The searchable database allows you to find recipes by ingredients or key words.
Pit Pal Pro BBQ
(iOS, Android; $1.99)
Most backyard barbecuers simply turn on the grill and slap on the meat. But this app helps you raise your game from fast-food cook to top chef. Pit Pal takes into account "BBQ variables," for example the type of meat and the temperature you're grilling it at and even the rubs and marinades you are using. You can export the results to an Excel spreadsheet or Word document so you can replicate your success throughout the summer.
Weber's On the Grill
(iOS, Android; $4.99)
Looking to get out of your burger and hot dog comfort zone? This app from the grill maker and recipe book publisher has ideas for an array of meals, from brisket to kebabs to filet mignon. There are also tips on grilling fruits and vegetables. The app organizes recipes into a shopping list, so you never have to send someone to the supermarket to buy some emergency Worcestershire sauce halfway through the grilling. A built-in timer tells you when your food is ready.
There's nothing worse than running out of propane before your grilling is done, and this app may help prevent that. Before you fire up the grill, fire up the app and gently hit the side of your tank with a quarter so it pings. BBQ TankMeter uses "acoustic signature analysis technology" to give you a readout of the amount of propane in your tank. One caveat: It works only with standard 20-pound steel propane tanks.
Reddit addresses harassment
Reddit says it is changing its "mostly hands-off approach" to posts on the freewheeling social media website. Noting a rise in "hate and offensive content," Reddit will prohibit attacks and harassment of individuals on the news and views website, which calls itself "the front page of the Internet." Reddit says the new policy is "designed to prevent attacks against people, not ideas." -- PETER KING
Spotify on Starbucks' menu
Spotify will stream music to Starbucks' 7,000 U.S. stores, creating what the streaming service calls a "music ecosystem." Starbucks' 150,000 employees will each receive a free Spotify Premium subscription, which typically costs $10 a month, allowing them to personalize music for each store. Customers can access the playlists via Starbucks' mobile app or on Spotify. In return, Starbucks will promote Spotify Premium in its stores. -- PETER KING
Apple maps new course
Trying to convince dubious consumers it's headed in the right direction in maps, Apple has acquired a company specializing in GPS technology. Coherent Navigation's software combines signals from traditional GPS satellites with those from private sector satellites for high-precision location readings. Apple launched Maps in 2012 to great embarrassment because the program was filled with bugs and misdirections, including suggestions that people drive into bodies of water. -- LOS ANGELES TIMES