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Craigslist rentals on VE map.

Hi everyone, I am working on this Virtual Earth Map mapshup to display craigslist rental listings. Any feedback is appreciated.
Joe Irvine Send private email
Sunday, July 06, 2008
Your NY,NY seems to be Jersey
Sunday, July 06, 2008
Very cool.  I love the idea.

The location of rentals needs some tweaking.  I was doing a search in Minneapolis and found several adds that were listed as Shakopee, but were located on the map in the wrong city (Granted some of the addresses listed in Craigslist are vague or non-existent).

Keep up the good work!
Brian Shipe Send private email
Sunday, July 06, 2008
Thanks NYer, Thats exactly what I needed. I am looking at the problem.
Joe Irvine Send private email
Sunday, July 06, 2008
NYer and Brian Shipe, can you guys please give me couple of ads that you found wrong.
I am trying to tweak my regular expressions, but I need specific examples that are wrong.

I greatly appreciate your help guys.
Joe Irvine Send private email
Sunday, July 06, 2008
This is one of the postings that I found yesterday.  It was being placed in downtown Minneapolis, but should have been in the far southwest of the metro area (south and west of Highway 494).

I haven't been able to find the posting again today, so I'm not quite sure what's up with it.  Do you have a recent time limit or so many ads you'll parse?

Let me know how it turns out.  Thanks!
Brian Shipe Send private email
Monday, July 07, 2008
I do the latest 300 ads. The ad you pointed out is 1000th or so oldest now. This is a big problem. I think I need to go back to 1000 ads.
Joe Irvine Send private email
Monday, July 07, 2008
I am doing it up to 1000 latest rental listings per county/area. Also I found the address parsing error in my regex. Good day so far :)
Joe Irvine Send private email
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Nice improvements.  I really like the color differences between 1, 2, etc bedroom apartments.  It really helps to clarify that the user is clicking on the right icon and in quickly finding stuff on the maps.

What is your limit for the number of items to display on the map at any point in time?  It seems as if when the user wants to display more than ~300 it tells them to zoom in.

Is there a better way to gather the user's search criteria than the Craig's list default?  I've never been a fan of all of the check boxes, but I can't think of anything better  (For pets, a drop-down may suffice with Cat, Dog, and Cats/Dogs).

Last point (that I have now), since we know that the 300 latest ads isn't enough, but all of them are way too much, is there a way the user can select how many to search through?  Either a drop-down box saying "Show me the n most recent ads" or time control boxes to allow input of start and end dates (i.e. Show me all of the ads between date X and date Y).  If you're worried about performance, you can set the default value to show 1000 but prompt the user if they try to do more than it'll slow down response time (On that note, where are you doing your work, server-side or client-side?).

Thoughts?  (Should I shut up yet and find another hobby? ;-))
Brian Shipe Send private email
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Thanks Brian.
I show only 300 points at a time on the map. I borrowed this idea from

Most people have specific criteria while looking for a rental. That normally brings down the number of rentals on their map. If someone can afford rentals between $1200 to $1400, they won't be looking at $2000 houses. Also the number of bedrooms and bathrooms they want are normally not very flexible.

I like the idea of a drop-down to do the time based filtering. I am thinking of following options:
. All (Default)
. Last 3 days
. Last 2 days
. Today

I am doing most of my work on the client side. This helps my poor little 512MB ram virtual server.

I really appreciate your feedback.
Joe Irvine Send private email
Wednesday, July 09, 2008
Aargh!  Way too many little buttons -- can't even see where I am on the the map.

Might want to think about some way to aggregate the data and provide drill-down.

Still, looks pretty cool.
BillAtHRST Send private email
Thursday, July 10, 2008
You may want to test it out on several different web-browers.

I'm at work right now and we still use IE 6.0 (Boo), but I get awkward shadows from the points and the shadows.  At home I use Firefox 3.0 and it seems to work pretty well.

Since there are hundreds of browsers, pick a few of the most popular and then test some recent versions (I'm assuming this is a pet project and not for business.  If it is for business, test as many as you possibly can).
Brian Shipe Send private email
Friday, July 11, 2008
This is a personal project that started with the aim of learning some technologies. I did my development on Firefox 3.0. I also tested it on IE7.

I never tested on IE6 or other inferior browsers ;)

I guess I can download Opera and try to test on it. I am not sure if I can have IE6 and IE7 on my machine at the same time.
Joe Irvine Send private email
Sunday, July 13, 2008
. IE 6 works now.
. Map is smarter now
    - Tries to figure out the location of a user based on IP address. Then zooms him in.
    - Remembers last location.
    - Remembers last search.
Joe Irvine Send private email
Sunday, July 13, 2008
Nice - that is a really sweet website.
Brian Shipe Send private email
Sunday, July 13, 2008
Hey Joe, I love it!! I am moving to NJ soon and your website is helping me immensely. I actually enjoyed my apartment hunting.

Keep up the good work, Anne
Anita Sadewa
Thursday, July 17, 2008
wow, really nice.  I just sent an email a landlord :)  Thanks for the service!  Is there a way that you could make it pop up new places as you pan?
Tuesday, July 29, 2008

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