By Bob Samii el 16 February 2009
We recently mentioned some new things happening with Goolzoom that is making for a very interesting project. The project was developed by Jesus Barrio towards the end of 2006 and presented in January of 2007. Since then, new improvements have been continuously introduced to provide a very useful tool for professionals that work with maps, such as topography, geology, architecture, … In a few words, we can say that Goolzoom is an enriched version of Google Maps. What it offers is maps from Google with additional maps added like maps of catrasto, aerial photographs of Sigpac (well known and used in Spain) or general municipal plans of some cities in Spain.
All of this additional geographic information included alongside of Google Maps provides great value and allows companies, institutions and professionals to use Goolzoom as part of their daily work. It´s a tool that did not exist before and now can help facilitate their work to a large extent. In this situation it is logical that an entrepreneur like Jesus Barrio sees that this project can utilize a premium account business model and that companies are happy to pay 90 Euros a year to Goolzoom for additional services: print maps, obtain a complete report for all that maps of one place, obtain maps in an image format with customizable sizes, navigate in 3D mode, street maps with dual two at a time, and not display advertising.
In just over three months of running the premium version of Goolzoom, there are already 300 users providing a revenue stream greater than a website like this could achieve from advertising.
This is in addition to the personalized services that Jesus Barrio is offering to public institutions with GoolGis which integrates customizable maps that the institutions already have in Google Maps.
By Bob Samii el 2 February 2009
When Google Street View was first presented in Spain, we quickly saw how it was being used and adapted by real estate and travel portals. But where a tool like this can realize it´s maximum potential is when it is combined with an application like Ipoki.
The best way to see the potential use of Google Street View in Ipoki is to follow Tatexo, an imaginary user, around different cities of the world. When this post was written, Taxteo was passing through Barcelona and it´s quite impressive to think about the implications this application may have on a variety of other sectors. For example, virtual visits for tourism or better recognition of transport routes for the transportation sector, and so on.
I have to recognize that each time I become more surprised by the Ipoki team and the number of functionalities they add to their localization-based social network. With the proliferation of GPS enabled mobile phones (even more so with the iPhone) , geolocalization tools like this will become increasingly more common for users.
By Luv el 13 November 2008
Imanol Iglesias is starting a social network for travel called Genviajero and has done it utilizing Google’s App Engine platform. I think this is the first site I’ve come across that is being built using the App Engine and I think it would be worth talking about a bit.
As we can see in the video of the presentation of App Engine made by Joaquin Cuenca in the Campus Party, what Google is looking for is to support those web projects that have the most possibilities for growth. If Google provides them with solutions for scalability, then we will have projects with high traffic and both Google and the project will be able to earn more money through advertising.
Here’s how Google App Engine works: the programmer, in this case Imanol, develops the application in Python (the only language available as of now) and uploads it to App Engine to have his web operational. The programmer doesn’t need to worry about databases, servers and other such issues related to the systems. App Engine also permits users to log in to the platform using their Google accounts, so users with existing accounts do not need to register on the web. As I am not a technical guy, I don’t want to go into detail in this aspect. If you want to know more, I recommend this article by Andreas Krohn.
As for Genviajero, I must say that as a social network for travellers, its basic function is sharing information on travel destinations and based on these favourites, make comments, opinions, recommendations, … Images of the sites added to the social network can be viewed on Panoramio, and soon it will allow users to upload their own pictures. On these lines, I think that in a social network like Genviajero, it makes a lot of sense to aggregate the maximum amount of information available related to places like hotels, restaurants, weather information, etc.
By Luv el 5 September 2008
Wikiloc is a project that I have been following since it won the mashup competition of Google Maps Spain in 2006. After a redesign at the beginning of this year that helped it gain considerably in traffic, now comes the definitive support for this project as it becomes a part of the information layer available on Google Earth.
Jordi Ramot tells me that the increase in traffic on an international level is an important one and that the moment has arrived to give full dedication to this project. Wikiloc offers its users an application with which to manage their GPS routes and place them on Google maps.
I don’t know if Wikiloc will get the level of support from Google similar to the support received by Panoramio, but I do believe that this news is very relevant for the project, mostly for the repercussion it means on an international level.
Seen in Tecnomaps.
By Javier el 27 April 2008
Ana Belen Ramon, better known as Missha in the world of web design has informed me about the launch (in the “preview release” phase) of Wolpy, a social network for travellers to share their travel experiencies.
Missha is responsible for the design of Wolpy (I love the design, congratulations Missha) and the programming has been done by Miguel Abad.
Having launched in “preview release” for now, Wolpy only allows you to create a map of the places you have visited in your trips and to carry out reviews of the places mentioned. As in all social networks that take pride in themselves, you can share these places with your friends and get to know the places that they have visited.
Once the launch phase is over, the next step would be to allow users to upload photos and videos of their trips besides being able to recommend other users on the places to visit.
The ultimate goal of Wolpy is to become a collaborative travel guide on a global scale.