The Roll-Your-Own Mash-up Challenge
By Charlene Li
I’m at Web 2.0, which is just a great conference. One of the hot discussions is around mash-ups (def) which combines the functionality from two different applications into a new one. One of the best ones is housingmaps.com, which combines apartment rentals etc., from Craig’s List and Google Maps.
To me, this is the next step in the “social computing”, Web 2.0, or whatever-you-call-it evolution. First, we had personalized content a la RSS-generated content on My Yahoo! At the same time, widgets, which are now hitting their stride, gave us our own customized set of applications on the desktop
This is because I think we’re just at the very tip of the revolution. Imagine if we could tap into the collective creativity of thousands, millions of consumers. How many times have you said to your self, “Wouldn’t be nice if I could just….” And here’s the killer part – what if some built a platform for consumers to do this, and then enabled a way to SHARE those innovations? Some of them would float to the top (thanks to ratings, tagging, etc.) and you could actually start monetizing them. Now that’s tapping into the power of consumers!
So here’s my challenge – what mash-ups would YOU create? Add them to the comments below – I’m curious to see what all you bright minds can come up with!
Let me get the ball rolling. I’m right in the middle of buying a house (offer is on the table, fingers are crossed) and it was a nightmare flipping between the MLS, Google maps and MSN’s Virtual Earth for satellite photos, and Yahoo! Maps for directions (I use their send to phone feature). At this point, let’s make it VERY simple – I just want to take a few of the addresses and plot them on a satellite map to compare their locations. Virtual Earth allows me to do this using their ScratchPad feature, but it was pretty cumbersome. Give me a form-based interface where I can input the addresses and generate a map. The next step would be the incorporation of GeoRSS tags that understand addresses, rather than longitude and latitude. One application – importing my kids’ school directory and plotting the location of their friends so that I can easily organize play dates.
So it’s your turn – what mash-ups can you come up with?