Sunday, June 14, 2009

Thing40: Mashup your life

I hit a winner right away with "Wheel of Food." Thanks -- it's fun! Here are some Northeast Minneapolis lunch spots, if you're interested.

I tried "Let Me Google that for you" and thought it was odd. Well, that's too harsh. But it's my job to Google things for people, and I don't get requests to Google for people in other contexts. However, the answers that came up led me to a program I hadn't heard of before, called Muckety. It maps relationships. For instance, one relationship map showed Sonia Sotomayor's key professional and political connections. Neat! You can click on the picture, above, to enlarge it.

I also explored Visual Headlines and Interestingness.

For new mashups, I found GotFreeShipping? which searches Amazon and E-bay for items with free shipping.

Another new mashup is Geographical Media, "a news monitoring tool designed to make it easy to follow news and find statistics about the people, places and other things you are most interested in. We read thousands of news articles a day from news sources from all around the world and identify who, what and where they are about.

"Who are the most talked about people in the world? What about in Africa? What are people in Russia saying about Barack Obama? These are some of the questions we hope to answer by statistically exploring the world's news."

I tried to do a mashup using autism statistics from Fighting Autism, using Dapp Factory, but I didn't succeed. I think the data was not amenable to being selected as fields. These were charts of autism prevalence and rates in the 50 US states, but I couldn't select just the states as a field, or just the prevalence, or just the rates. I should have tried something simpler.

This is the Thing I dreaded most. I've been turning over different ideas for mashups, but most of them already exist! Maybe I need more information neediness.

Here's one I was going to invent is on Programmable Web--it's called CodexMap, and it "lets you find, and place, books graphically on a map. Whether the book was added to the system by our harvester, or by you or another user, you can interact with a map to find books.

APIs: Amazon EC2 + GeoNames + Google Maps + LibraryThing."

Ironically, the same info is available for fiction on NoveList, though without the map (last time I checked!)

So, I turned to the user-friendly BigHugeLabs and Hockneyized a photo. OK! Done!

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