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English-language version of Luistxo Fernandez's blog

European clones for Housingmaps and Trulia

Luistxo Fernandez 2006/06/21 11:03
One of the big announcements that Google reserved for the Where 2.0 Conference, the availability of free Google-based geocoding , not only for the US, but for Spain, France, Italy and Germany, is having immediate effects. The most obvious, to me, is that this will boost continental real-estate mashups.

Look at this beta, http://www.revoluz.com/ made by the people of Panoramio (I was happy to met with them at Where 2.0) using Loquo.com data. Ubaldo Huerta, Loquo's master, helped them including the addresses in the feeds from Loquo, so Revoluz becomes the most similar European thing to the famous Housingmaps, which combining Craigslist (and Loquo is the Spanish Craigslist, bought by eBay last year) and Google Maps, was the first big mashup that deserved that name. So, any other can easily do the same, no screen scratching needed. Most addresses are not explicit enough for precise geocoding, but Loquo's big asset is visible price, so uncommon in Spain, where most agents don't mention the price of a house.

Another one, an Italian example: http://www.maiom.com/mappa.

Now that we see this in Continental Europe, the absence of UK geocoding in Google's offer becomes more obvious. I heard some English people at Where 2.0 and the Google Geo Developed Day that they felt like being 3rd World following the geocoding announcement...

However, the real-estate mashup environement is more active in the UK, despite expensive geocoding. There's a more advanced Internet and entrepreneurial culture there, both for customers to use the net to search homes, and better ground for start-ups to blossom. And this is the result of that:



The latest brittish real-estate website that I have noticed is Nestoria. Its look and feel resembles Trulia, that great US site. Very professional, apparently tied to the geo-hacker community... The continental mashups quite far from that level.



One URL for every postal address: Zopto and our work

Luistxo Fernandez 2006/06/14 21:33
I'm at the Where 2.0 conference in San Jose. We come to see how things move around here... There are many similar sites to Tagzania, and we wanted to test the atmosphere. One of the contenders that has risen in the realm of social apps is the New Zealand company named Projectx Technology who have launched Zoomin.co.nz and Zoomin.com.au in NZ and Australia.
 
One of the features of Zoomin is the nice URLs they get. Check this in Australia:
 
 http://zoomin.com.au/australia/wa/perth/east+perth/hay+street/310/
 
Postal addressess equal URLs. Nice concept. Now they've extended it to the US with a thing named Zopto, and beginning with California they have things like:
 
 http://preview.zopto.com/ca/orange/irvine/boise/
 
 http://preview.zopto.com/ca/san+francisco/san+francisco/market+street/10/
 
Well, we just made for a customer a very similar thing. Independent from Tagzania, fully, and we just didn't have any say in the main GIS at B5m, the mapping app of a Basque region, but we did manage to create a very nice postal directory: one URL per every address in the region of Gipuzkoa, in the Basque Country, a relatively small area of 0.5 million people, where there are 80.000 final web addresses.
 
 So, this is the home level:
 
http://b5m.gipuzkoa.net/kaletegia
 
 and this is a certain city, with its street list:
 
 http://b5m.gipuzkoa.net/kaletegia/tolosa and let's jump to streets beggining with S...  
 
We choose a street, Urkizu Auzoa:
 
 http://b5m.gipuzkoa.net/kaletegia/tolosa/urkizu_auzoa
 
There it is, the list of buildings there, also arrangable by house names, as this happens to be a rural area with traditional households.

And, of course, the final address of any given house has its URL:

http://b5m.gipuzkoa.net/kaletegia/eibar/bidebarrieta/042

Not only works with postal addresses, but with rivers, mountains, and other elements, as roads, and exact kilometer points in roads:

http://b5m.gipuzkoa.net/kaletegia/errepidea/n-634/


http://b5m.gipuzkoa.net/kaletegia/errepidea/n-634/31
 
A couple of screenshots: one from a street, and the other one, a whole kilometer in road N-634




Attending the Google Geo Developer Day at the Googleplex

Luistxo Fernandez 2006/06/07 12:55
Next monday I'll visit the Googleplex. With my friend and coleague Josu Azpillaga, as part of the Tagzania team, we will attend the Where 2.0 Conference in San Jose, California (tue, wed). But on Monday, there's a related event, organised by Google itself, the Geo Developer Day. This is the schedule:

11:00-12:00 Registration

11:45 - 1:00 Lunch

1:00 - 2:30. Launch. Google says: We've got a few things up our sleeve, and you'll be the first to see.

2:30 - 3:30. Showcase Session. A gallery of great Maps API Mashups and Earth KML presented by Mike Pegg of Google Maps Mania (where I sometimes write as a correspondent) and Frank Taylor of the Google Earth Blog.

3:30 - 5:00. Breakout Sessions. Dig deeper on development issues specific to Maps, Earth, or SketchUp.

5:00 - 7:30. Poster Session, Ping Pong, and Patio Dinner. We proposed Tagzania to be in a poster... Perhaps we'll see a screenshot attached there...

That's at Google Headquarters. 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway, Mountain View, CA 94043

Of course, this is a return visit for the previous one the Google team payed to the CodeSyntax headquarters, in Pol. Azitain, Eibar, E-20600 ;-)

Back to the Cemetery

Luistxo Fernandez 2006/06/05 15:54

The hybernation ended. The Cemetery is back. 

Thee layout and software have changed. No more Coreblog, but Bitakora. No images of Donostia or the location of the Cemetery... Just some anonymous partying girls now. It has nothing to do with the Cemetery or with myself, but well, it's just something I liked. The old layout has been buried in Flickr.


No more trackbacks, perhaps pingbacks, but not sure. As for comments, they will pass the captcha checking to block non-human entities. Old comments and permalinks have been preserved. There were no categories or blog sections previously, now I have tags as an organising principle. The RSS feed has a new location, but I hope that the re-direct trick intended for Bloglines works, so subscribers don't have to make any changes.

Now, the two blogs, the one in Basque and English are not the same instance, truly. So, I am little more apart from the path to multilingual blog perfection that I wrote once: the Ten Commandments for bilingual blogs. Moreover, someone may remeber that this began as a trilingual blog, but in october 2005, the Spanish side moved to the Mapamovil.net


Aurkezpena
LUISTXO FERNANDEZ

Luistxo works in CodeSyntax, tweets as @Luistxo and tries to manage the automated newssite Niagarank. This Cemetery is part of a distributed multilingual blog (?!). These are the Basque and Spanish versions:

Ingelesen hilerria

El cementerio de los ingleses

 

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