One of the least fun freelance jobs I ever did was helping an interior designer measure out a recently-shuttered dot-com office. The space was massive, and while the designer had the original blueprints, the real deal didn't quite jive; there were surprise soffets, new partition walls and of course nothing was square. It took a day and a half using our tape measures and a laser and we still hadn't gotten it quite right.
I wish we had had the awesome smartphone-camera-based apps that are now available. Check out this demo of "MagicMeasure"—I have no idea how the thing determines baseline scale, but the results look impressively easy to accomplish:
The "MagicPlan" app, now in its fourth iteration, goes a step further and helps you create plan drawings:
App developer Sensopia claims that both apps are 95% accurate, and say that if you connect a Bluetooth laser to your phone and hook it up to MagicPlan, the accuracy jumps to 100%.
Both apps are free to download, because the company gets you with the in-app purchases (i.e. it costs you, of course, to get the plans out of the phone and into DXF.) But had this existed back then, I'd have gladly paid, as I would've saved myself a bundle on that job alone.
Environments designers, interior designers and architects: What are the measuring apps you guys use and like? And do they work as advertised?