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For those who work across nations, whether from a desk or traveling by car, plane, train, or bus, keeping track of local differences can be a bear to memorize and prepare for. Even European Union countries that have adopted the euro vary in electrical plug types, languages, and time zones.
Morpho from Think Tap Work combines every useful fact and conversion into an app, letting you set countries, currencies, and units you use preferentially as pinned items or presets. You can figure out the right AC adapters to pack, the country code for calling attached to the SIM you get when you arrive, and whether to drive on the left or right side of the road. But you can also use the app to help you with imperial to metric conversions–or even convert gigabytes to megabytes.
It’s true that you can query Google and turn to other apps, like Soulver or PCalc, for some of this information, particularly currency and unit conversions. But Morpho packages it all in one place. Even this desktop warrior, who rarely travels abroad, regularly calculates prices, units, and time zones for shipping items I make, scheduling podcasts, and buying items from outside the US. Morpho makes it easy to find exactly what I need.
Part of the app’s power lies in customization. You can search among its extensive Units & Currencies list for kitchen measurements (cups, liters, tablespoons, and the like), global currencies, fuel consumption measures (such as miles per gallon versus kilometers per liter), volume, and area and then pick unit to convert into. The units also include power, voltage, shoe size, electrical charge, data storage measurements, frequency, angles, and more for less location-specific conversions.
Adding a currency conversion provides both the direction of exchange you specify–like dollars to euros–and a list of other options: the reverse conversion and common unit amounts, like 5, 10, 25, 50, 100, and so forth.
You can type entries from the keyboard or use a calculator-input pad in the lower-left corner of the window. If you want to paste any display value or conversion, Control-click and select Copy or Copy Full Conversion. For instance, in calculating 500 miles in kilometers, the full conversion copied appears on the clipboard as 500 miles is 804.672 kilometers.
The app might even teach you something. For instance, did you know that the cup measure comes in imperial, standard/customary (drinking), U.S. legal, and metric versions, all of them with slightly varying quantities? Neither did I. Pay attention when selecting units such as those, as Morpho correctly distinguishes between them. In testing, I discovered a bug in which converting these measures that produced an error when copying out a conversion. Think Tap Work investigated, found the error is in a library Apple provides for conversion values, and reported it to Apple for a resolution.
The country section provides a mini-dossier on the standards, units, codes, time zones, and other data useful to a traveler, someone localizing software or a website, or anyone making sure they understand how to format information appropriately to send to someone in that country.
In the free flavor of Morpho, you see a map in the context of other countries, the two-letter ISO code, the country’s international calling prefix, and the side on which people drive–an extremely useful fact in some places! The Pro flavor unlocks currency, AC plug type or types, fuel and distance measurement units, languages spoken (and the name of the language in that language and its script), and the names of all time zones and the current time.
Think Tap Work makes the app for the Mac, iPhone, iPad, and Watch. A free flavor on every platform includes ads, limits the number of conversions you can set to eight, updates currency prices daily, and provides only a little information about each country. Take a test run of Morpho at this permanently free tier, or use a three-day free trial to test out the Pro features. I recommend the Pro version.
The Pro upgrade is an in-app purchase that’s $0.49 a month or $3.99 a year, allowing you to subscribe briefly or inexpensively. There’s a $14.99 lifetime unlock available, too. The Pro flavor omits ads, updates currency prices hourly, provides substantially more country-specific information, includes alternate themes and icons, and allows unlimited stored conversions.
Morpho lets you travel the world from the comfort of your home or office while also benefiting those who actually do hop from country to country. It’s a global visualization of literal local values at your fingertips.
With the strong resurgence of the Mac in recent years, we want to celebrate the tools we use and that readers recommend to make the most of your macOS experience. Mac Gems highlights great nuggets of Mac software, apps that have a high utility, have a sharp focus on a limited set of problems to solve, and are generally developed by an individual or small company. Stay tuned for weekly updates, and send your suggestions to the Mac Gems Twitter feed (@macgems).