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Four unique apps for data collection

There are numerous resources for online sleuthing, but before you get sucked into an internet rabbit hole. Consider these other resources to conduct your own research or validate leads sourced during crowdsolving, and add to your virtual toolbox.


Measure

This handy app is already loaded onto your iPhone or iPad, and enables you to quickly gauge the size of real objects, a person’s height, etc. Basically a digital tape measure on steroids.

  • Why it’s good: The Swiss Army Knife app, you don’t need to collect numerous tools for your measuring needs. Perfect when in the field or behind the screen.


Wayback Machine

Explore 468 billion+ web pages saved over time. Perfect for confirming facts in the pursuit of a cold case. Going back as far as 1996, this resource is the best website for internet archiving.

  • Why it’s good: Millions of people use this site each day for different purposes. You never know when you’ll need to authenticate employment via an old staff page or verify an address from the mid-nineties.


Google Translate

Google’s free service instantly translates words, phrases, and web pages between English and over 100 other languages. With is super-easy scan function, let your phone do the hard part; simply aim and snap to covert signage, text, etc. into English or 99 other languages.

  • Why it’s good: You never know when you might come across evidence in another language, and who has time to conjugate verbs when you’re solving cold cases?


Old Maps Online

OldMapsOnline.org indexes over 400,000 maps thanks to archives and libraries. This open-source resource also allows you to submit your own maps.

  • Why it’s good: You can go back in topographic history to see where homes once stood, businesses existed, or parks and greenspace existed in relation to crime scenes or other key locations.


Finding accurate information in a safe and thoughtful way on cold cases is the first step in online sleuthing. We've compiled a Citizen Detective guide to help you sharpen your skills, download it today to build your digital toolkit and moving up in the detective ranks.

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