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FROM: Michael Galvin

What NEED does this meet?
A local A-Z. You can use standard maps to find a city, but then if you’re looking for a bus station, restaurant, hospital, place of business etc, you're usually stopping the car and asking the toothless yokel sitting at the bus stop, who may or may not understand what you're looking for.

What is the APPROACH?
Would all be natural directions (not “proceed down road for 45 metres, take penultimate left”, but more “go past the Woolies and the Ladbrokes and on the right, you’ll see some graffiti – take a right there”). Created by local people, either on request or as default for major attractions (for example, I’m visiting Bournemouth next week, I’m staying at the Luxor hotel, how do I get to the dog track?”)

Most routes would attempt to go through at least one other major attraction, so that they can be reused, for example, if someone has already put together a route map from the bus station to the dog track and happened to pass the Luxor hotel on the way, the requisite portion of the route could be shown instead of requesting a brand new one

What are the BENEFITS to people?
Obviously, it's the help given to visitors to your town.

What is the COMPETITION?
Competition would probably be the toothless yokel :) ToothlessYokel.com is only a step away.

What BUDGET & LOGISTICS are required?
Not very. A small number of moderators would be required to gather and enter data to begin with (say 1 for most major cities) and to then subsequently review and moderate the data that is being written by visitors.

The most difficult part will be the natural language part (where dog track = greyhound track = dog racing = racing = the dogs, etc). But this will develop and improve as the site grows.

The site should quite easily be set up in a way that it could make money: Tourist offices could come on board as partners, local businesses could pay to have their offices inserted into routes ("go past PJ O'Denis solicitors")

November 4, 2003 in Geographic, User Created Content | Permalink


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Check out http://www.openguides.org, it seems fairly close to what you are looking for and can be enhanced/modified as necessary.

Posted by: Mamading Ceesay at Nov 8, 2003 12:21:08 AM

Ah, yes. That would be pretty close to how I imagined it, and the fact that site is not very well maintained (again, in comparison to the way I envisioned it) just puts paid to the whole idea really.

Posted by: Michael Galvin at Nov 19, 2003 10:11:52 PM

dorking station to copse hill ;wimbldon

Posted by: stevie at Oct 7, 2004 7:58:51 PM