iPhoned individuals may be interested to know that Weyerhaeuser has released a productive alternative to Fruit Ninja in the form of a deck beam sizing application (available from the Apple App Store here).
This application requires only three inputs from the user to size a beam as well as provide emailed PDF documentation of calculations and International Building Code (IBC) references for building department submittal. These inputs are joist length, post spacing and applied loading. A drawback to this application is that it will only size Weyerhaeuser Parallam beams and does not provide any ledgering / attachment information where the deck meets the house. I presume that this app is intended more for the Do-It-Yourself crowd and it would be nice to see some guidance at this location. It is this engineers that the ledger is the most critical connection to get correct and is the least often done. This would not be that big of a deal if the ledger was not the most common failure in decks that have led to injuries.
I think that this application is quite intuitive and wonderful as a tool to quickly size Parallam beams for pricing, but there are many other factors that do into deck construction that need to be considered. As always, when in doubt…call the friendly structural engineers at EVstudio!