This is not strictly on topic for this website, but it is a subject close to many folkies’ hearts; apparently someone is writing an app for your smartphone to recommend beers that you might like. Beer Mapper is a project by engineering student Kevin Jamieson. The app, when it becomes available, will work a lot like a Hot or Not for beer: It shows you two options and you pick the one you prefer. After you’ve gone through and picked beers for a while, you’ll be able to view a heat map that’s supposedly representative of the beers you might like the most.

How does it work? First, Jamieson created a database of beverages for the project by pulling reviews from the 50 most commonly discussed brews on After crunching the reviews, he was able to create a “map” of beers, which is a solid representation of the similarities and differences between beers. From there, all the app needs is for you to input on various kinds so that it can extrapolate your taste.

My advice, skip the app, and get yourself to some beer festivals. The people that brew craft ales, stouts, bitters, lagers and ciders tend not to be too fussy about apps and they’d be more help, and you’d have more fun too.