Google maps vs. Yahoo! maps permalinks

Yesterday I showed Alex my Google maps vs. Yahoo! maps side-by-side comparision tool that I created so people can easily compare Google maps and Yahoo! maps. And right at that moment I realized that I never posted about it in this blog so here it is.
Alex suggested to add links to both sites so people can go and check ogirinal thing, and finally I got that solved so now you can see “G” and “Y” next to main permalink (see screengrab).

I can say that I enjoy JavaScript development which is a weird thing for a server side developer to say but I stopped using JS (about 10 years ago) only because it was so puny as a technology and now I’m coming to AJAX and JS web services because they really allow making cool stuff pretty easily – whole project took approximately 20 hours of work (spread over a couple of weeks) including learning both APIs, setting up hosting and writing this post.

So please, come and enjoy the fun of searching for differences (coordinates permalink will allow you to link to current position). You can post them as comments to this blog for now, special interface integrated into main page is coming in future releases.

P.S. Looks like Google is not using zoom level in their URL but viewport size instead, also it seams that Google maps quality is much better then they provide with API while Yahoo! is letting you use their production imagery (+1 to Yahoo!).

P.P.S. I had hard time figuring our how to point to Yahoo’s plain maps service so I put a link to their Flash based beta which is noticebly slower on my computer. I’ll be happy to add plain version link if someone will give me a clue how to pass it all parameters.

More features

I was pretty tired past week because of this bullshit with carpeting in my apartment and a lot of information I got from Syndicate and Streaming Media East, but I spent some time on improoving friends interaction as well as feed management.

  • Now you can see not only your friends but people who added as a friend and reading news you shared. You can read their news by clicking “add” button next to their name.
  • Also you can invite friends who are not FeedFriends users yet – just send them invitation e-mail. Once they register, you’ll be added as friends to each others list.
  • Feeds tree is much more functional now and you can add feeds to any level of the group tree as well as delete groups with feeds alltogether. All of thet is reflected accordingly in OPMLs (remember, you can import whole listof preprocessed feeds to you reader with just one URL).
  • I also added rudimentary account setting editor but I will improve it later.

More to come – currently I’m working on following features:

  • Interface to finally be able to place all the different controls into your feed. Backend is already there and quite promising but interface eventually will be quite flexible and will bring more meening to both FeedPreprocessor and InFeedControls subprojects. It will start to appear piece by piece so don’t expect constant miracle ;)
  • Tools to share news and pages directly from the browser – without reader
  • Communities and multiple output channels

Please feel free to post your comments – I’ll be happy to discuss all this (I’m still thinking about putting up a Forum but I hate empty forums – even more then empty comment lists).

Back from Syndicate


Event type: Conference

Date: 2006-05-23

I’m back from the conference. It was quite interesting even though everything looked like early stage for the business.

I loaded my new iPod Video with Rocketboom, installed structured blogging wordpress plugin for this blog and gave away some Feed Friends business cards.

Now it’s time to get more hands dirty with Feed Friends guts – more features to come.

Tags: rss

Feed Friends is open

Right before going to Syndicate conference, I opened Feed Friends to public.

It’s still in very raw state and several actions fail without giving user any feedback e.g.:

  • Atom feeds are not supported yet
  • If feed fails to pass initial import it appears untitled
  • and some more

But it works for me, works form some other people and clearly worth opening – just expect it to be fixed on the go.

I’m also going to create some feedback and discussion mechanism (either forum or mail-list) in near future but for now, feel free to submit all your concerns as comments to this entry.

And I hope to see more news shared by you!


FeedFriends toolbar

FeedFriends toolbar left incubator and now available to all users.

Now all the links in the feed are converted on the fly to toolbar links (with same base module that absolutizes links and helps to see those images that got corrupted otherwise).

What it means is that target page is opened inside a frame and on the top of that frame there is another tiny frame (36 pixels high at the moment) that contains “share” button, feed item title and a link to the initial link (in case you’d like to get back to where you started).

This toolbar significantly saved my time when I tried to chase stories (to share them) after I clicked deeper into the story which happens quite often.

P.S. some sites (e.g. Make magazine) coded their pages in the way that it detects being opened inside a frame and jumps our of it. I’m sorry to say that this can’t be reasonably avoided and I respect site owners decision to do so. In this case you’ll have to feel the pain and get back the feed item in your reeder to share it until I find some other tricks (like popups instead of toolbar or URL posting – both were given serious thoughts for this or other reasons).