When things really get out of hand, you'll want to fire up the Army Survival Guide. This free version of a recent edition of the U.S. military guide is published for Android devices by appopus.com. An App Store search turned up several versions of the guide for Apple devices, but not one that is free.
Included in the survival guide is a chapter on desert survival, with advice that might translate well to city and town on staying sheltered in the heat of the day, switching travel plans to nighttime, and looking out for mirages. It also covers warning signs of heat exhaustion, heat strokes, and other ways you might become a "heat casualty."
For would-be MacGyvers, the survival guide is a gold mine of instruction on how to be resourceful, how to deal with stress - the "psychology of survival," as the guide puts it - and how to read the clouds to know what sort of weather is coming over the horizon.
On my Samsung tablet, I could tap an icon in the upper right corner of the screen to hear the text read aloud.
Weather Underground, the app by the company of the same name, is free for Android and Apple. Weather Underground claims to have built the first weather site on the Internet. These days, it offers apps and gadgets and widgets for desktop and mobile platforms, and an app for Roku, a content-streaming device for TVs.
In the phone app, if a red alert icon appears on the home screen, tap it to see current heat and air-quality warnings. The app will send severe-weather alerts to your device, if you tell it to do so in the "settings" screens.
Tap "more" to play National Weather Service radio, read the WunderBlog, tweet weather reports, see a page on tropical-storm activity, or check for ski conditions - although even Alaska didn't look promising this week.
Contact Reid Kanaley at firstname.lastname@example.org, 215-854-5114 or @ReidKan.