After downloading the database, the top row of the opening screen shows "Broadleaf Weeds" and "1000/1000 Species." This tells you which XID database you are in and that none of the 1,000 species has been eliminated.
The next row has three tabs:
Browse Tab: Use the browse list just like a conventional illustrated field guide, to look up images and information about the 1,000 species.
- The browse list allows you to scroll up and down the list of remaining species.
- By tapping the "search" button on your device you can toggle the sort order of the browse list by scientific/common name, or search text strings within the names. If your device does not have a “search” button, tap the menu button and select “filter.”
- Tap on any of the species to expand the thumbnail image and display other available images as thumbnails. Expanded thumbnails can be further expanded to “touch zoomable” full size images.
- After tapping a species in the browse list, you are in the "Description screen." The text description and scientific name of the species can be found above the image (drag the screen down if the description is not available.
- Tap any thumbnail to expand the image
- Tap any expanded image to expand it further and make it able to be "touch zoomed"
- Tap the "back" symbol on your device to return to the original expanded thumbnail image
- The last image for each species is a county/province level map of its known distribution. See map legend (footnote #1 below)
- See map legend by tapping the "?" symbol at the bottom of the screen when in the Geography menu
- After a species in the browse list has been selected (by tapping it) but before the image is further expanded, the center "Attributes" tab shows you the data for each species starting with geographic distribution, scroll down for more (see footnote #2 below). The "References" tab allows you to see the page number where the species appears in any of over 50 weed reference books
Key Tab: Use the interactive key to identify an unknown non-grass-like weed.
- Selecting this tab displays the menus from which the user can select attributes to identify an unknown plant (see footnote #3 below).
- Remember that you only need to select attributes of your choosing, NOT ALL OF THEM!
- Selecting your geographic area from the Geography menu is a good place to start.
- There are many easy attributes in the General menu.
- Tapping a menu icon opens the menu, long-taping a menu icon displays more details.
- Tapping an attribute in a menu marks that attribute and reduces the number of remaining species (the number remaining is shown in the upper right corner).
- Tapping the marked attribute again clears the mark.
- Select the + sign in the lower left to change whether you are marking the attributes as YES, OR, or NO (see footnote #4 below).
- You can also select whether "Forgiveness" is On or Off, (see footnote #5 below).
- Tapping the "Guide" button in the lower right corner will take you to the best menu based on the remaining species.
- After marking an attribute, tap the "Next" button to see the next best selection.
- If you are unable to answer the suggested attribute, selecting "Don’t Know" will bring up the next suggestion.
- While in the key, you can go to "Menu" to see a list of Best Menus, review the Marks you have made, or Clear All Marks you have made
Selecting "Cache images to SD card" allows you to use the program where there is no phone or internet access and makes the images appear much more rapidly.
Depending on your device and connection, the app may take up to several hours to download (start before you go to bed).
#1: Map Legend, all data copyright John Kartesz, Biota of North America Program www.bonap.org :
- Brown > Not reported for that state
- Dark blue > exotic species reported present in that state but not reported for that county
- Light blue > exotic species reported present in that county
- Dark green > native species reported present in that state but not reported for that county
- Light green > native species reported present in that county
#2: Attribute colors:
- White > (SHARED) > attributes shown in white occur in the current species and some, but not all, of the other remaining species.
- Blue > (ALL) > attributes shown in blue occur in all of the remaining species
- Green > (DISTINCT) > attributes shown in green occur, among the remaining species, only in the current species
#3: Menu Efficiency
How powerful an attribute will be in reducing the number of species, can be determined by the % number to its right. The larger the number, the more likely that the menu will be of value.
- The \u0025 number to the right of a menu of submenus is that of its most powerful submenu.
#4: YES, NO, OR marks:
- YES > marking an attribute as YES leaves a blue "+" mark on the attribute and eliminates all species that do not have that attribute. For a YES mark the number shown to the right of the attribute is the number of species that will remain when the attribute is marked
- NO. > marking an attribute with a NO leaves a red "-"mark on the attribute and eliminates all species that have that attribute (use with caution!). For a NO mark the number shown to the right of the attribute is the number of species that will remain when the attribute is marked
- OR > marking an attribute with an "OR" leaves a green "/" on the attribute and eliminates all species that do not have any of the attributes marked as OR. For the first OR mark the number shown to the right of the attribute is the number of species that will remain when the attribute is marked. The result of further OR marks can not be determined by the number to the right.
#5: Forgiveness Feature
If the attributes you have entered reduce the remaining species to a small number, and your unidentified species is not among them, there are three possible reasons:
A. The species is not in the database.
This is the most comprehensive weed identification reference ever produced for North America, but there are still many species that are not included.
B. There is an error in the data.
This is possible, if any errors are discovered please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
C. You entered an incorrect attribute.
Please go to Menu > "Marks" to review the marks you have made. You can review and eliminate or change any of the marks you have made directly in this screen. If you cannot determine where you have made an error, or to account for any possible error in the data, setting the Forgiveness Feature to "On" will allow ANY one incorrectly marked attribute to be treated as correct. This will increase the number of remaining species, but will not eliminate a species due to an incorrectly marked attribute or error in the data.
Geography map images based on this map from Wikimedia Commons.