I’ve posted at some length previously regarding extraction, TDS, meters and all that. I daresay I may become typecast in the role of extraction curmudgeon. That said, the Extract Mojo software and refractometer have become as much a part of my coffee toolset as my grinder, or kettle. However, the economy of the meter and software has been the one area I have had some concern. Ideally, everyone could afford the package, and we could all move forward, industry and consumers, both understanding how to get to where we want to be. Job done. The price barrier has been formidable for all but the most devoted consumers, and even, I imagine, for plenty of small coffee shops and roasters. The path to widespread adoption has not looked to be a speedy one.
Last autumn, I had a number of really interesting conversations with Vince Fedele regarding extraction, TDS meters, conductivity vs refraction among other things. At this time I had the coffee meter. Shortly after, Vince asked if I would consider taking part as a beta-tester for his new iPhone based “universal refractometer” software. And here’s the kicker, it would not only perform a lot of the analysis functions of the Windows based software, it would also allow me to use my Coffee meter for measuring espresso TDS (or vice versa – had I the espresso meter).
This amazed me. It turns out the two meters have the same ability to measure refractive index, but due to limited memory on the meters, conversion tables for both espresso and coffee cannot be accomodated. What once was quite a big expense for 2 meters and the windows software, had instantly become a more reasonable single meter and iPhone app.
The basic premise is that instead of reading the TDS value from the meter, you switch to nD mode (nD = refractive index), and by inputting the nD and temp (also read by the meter) into MoJoToGo, you get the TDS. Similar to the original software, the TDS is combined with the coffee and water doses (or in the case of espresso – beverage weight) to get you to extraction %.
There are plenty of other functions that are interesting, like saving recipes, sending recipes via email, geotagging, not to mention extended usage into Brix territory (home brewing anyone?). It’s probably beyond the scope of this blog post to adequately discuss all the features, so instead I’ll point you towards the new home of all things MoJo… www.mojotogo.us.
I can sum up my feelings on MoJoToGo thusly; in the time I’ve had the app, I’ve only used the Windows version maybe twice. The iPhone app is always there, in my pocket, ready to go in a second.