MapQuest recently launched a new local service called MapQuest Local that more or less follows the Localmouth pattern.
Like Localmouth, they’re aggregating content from a number of local information providers to provide guides to individual places.
Currently, the information they’re aggregating includes business listings from City’sBest and CityGuide, news from Topix, weather from WeatherBug, events from CityGuide, movies from Moviefone, photos from Flickr and videos from Truveo. They also feature their own maps and gas price information.
It looks like that’s just the beginning, though. In their developer blog they’re appealing for anyone with local content feeds to get in touch.
The interface is quite nicely done, serving the page outline first and serving the content via what are presumably AJAX updates later. As they’ve also opted to pack everything onto a single page, the result is that the user gets a big hit of information with one page load, without that page having a painfully long load time. It’s an interesting way of doing things.
So far they don’t seem to have any content for the UK. I wonder if they could use a UK-based partner ;-)
Josh Babetski · September 25, 2008 at 7:16 pm
Thanks for the compliments on MapQuest Local! Your assessment is spot on.
It’s a departure from the traditional format of a MapQuest page. The single page allows an at-a-glance dashboard of information about a location. The content is loaded via Ajax (using jQuery BTW).
We’re going to continue to release additional feeds and are working on more features. This week we added classifieds, autos and support for Microformats. While the focus is on the US at the moment, we’d love to chat about content ideas for the UK or any additional suggestions or feedback. Feel free to email us directly or use the sign-up for the Local Program. (http://developer.mapquest.com/localquest).
Mark · September 26, 2008 at 4:36 am
On behalf of the entire MapQuest Team I thank you for your kind observations on MapQuest Local. As you noted we have only just begun and we expect to deliver more content and services over the coming months.
You are correct in that we do not currently have MapQuest Local for the UK. If you or any of your readers have access and wish to contribute content to a UK version of MapQuest Local please do feel free to reach out to us via our dev blog at http://devblog.mapquest.com/