Super-mashup with Yahoo! APIs: event browser

Event Browser In my twelfth week at Yahoo! I’m really happy to be able to finally point to something I have been working on with a small but incredibly talented team of engineers and UI designers (a couple of them even newer than me to Yahoo!) Check out the Event Browser, a super-demo of a bunch of Yahoo! APIs, with the exciting new Maps AJAX API we just announced as the foundation (and if you’re not in to AJAX there are many more Maps APIs to play with).

Frankly, I’ve been getting a little bored with maps mashups in general. Most are just a new set of points on a map from some newly-liberated set of data, which is cool but not as exciting as it used to be. This mashup is different, though. Instead of a standard query interface, the map becomes the center of the experience and your browse movement on the map determines the events you see in a very dynamic way. As you move around on the map, events taking place within your map space appear to the right of the map. All this goodness is happening completely client-side, i.e. Javascript making REST calls. There’s also a dynamic tag cloud with event categories that re-draw themselves as you move around. Very cool.

One more cool thing (hey, did someone use the word “cool”?) The images displayed for particular events take Yahoo! events output and pipe it through our Term Extraction API, then through the Image Search API to produce amazingly appropriate images for the event. Ravi Dronamraju, who put together the team that built this demo, provides his thoughts on this demo. A big thanks to Ed, Jonathan, Mirek, Karon, Sam, Nate, and Toby.

It’s a great team, and working with them on this reminded me of the concept of the “jelled team” from the truly excellent must-read software engineering management book Peopleware, which I wrote about at InfoWorld:

The jelled team is so tightly knit that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. There is low turnover, a strong sense of identity, a sense of elitism, joint ownership of products, and enjoyment derived from participation.

Can’t wait to do more.

Update: Ed Ho writes in a little more detail about how the demo works, and kindly gives credit to his teammates.

19 thoughts on “Super-mashup with Yahoo! APIs: event browser

  1. very cool…I’ve been waiting for this type of resource to develop a series of trail and bikepath maps that I can attach notes and photos to. Boulder has 60 miles of bikepath and as many trails for hikers. Your work could make my personal project possible soon. Thx

    on the commercial side, I’d like to map events we list using your event browser. kudos

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  3. The Yahoo! Maps team rocks after releasing new version of Yahoo! Maps and adding new APIs! The new set of services is really what I need and what I expected to have for the and other mapping project development.

    I did not check out yet but think that Yahoo! Geocoding API will beat all existing Geocoders.* or force them to create better service. But as far as most of Geocoders.* have been created without proven business model, it will be tough time for them to compete with Yahoo! Geocoding API.

    I’m looking forward to play with new Yahoo!Map API features and implement something new and cool in the – service with mapping user interface which allows users to build custom maps without any knowledge of any existing map APIs.

  4. Why can’t you have anti-aliased maps? The way that diagonal lines look in the app makes your otherwise interesting application look raggedy. That’s a way more important problem than not having local events appear on the maps.

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