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Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Discussion Topic - Mashups

What role will mashup apps play in the field of marketing? Any ideas come to mind?

In case you haven't heard of them by this name, a mashup is an application that combines elements from two or more websites or applications. Here is a 5-minute intro video that covers it well:

What is a mashup? - ZDNet

One example that uses a mashup particularly well is a google-map linked to craigslist housing that displays the places for rent on a google map.

The little research I have done suggests that these will be big. It seems that a proper mashup between data-based sites (such as google-maps and craigslist) creates another layer over and above the two input sources. This is much like a music mashup, which combines elements from at least two songs to create a third, original song. In the case of the craigslist/google-maps mashup, the shift is in how we experience the information, just as is the case with a song.

What I want to see: A google-map connected to freecycle and free stuff on craigslist. Perhaps this would need some sort of 'location blurring' for safety's sake, but the resources that would be saved could be enormous! I check craigslist for free-stuff just to kill time, but if I had a map that told me every time something within .5 miles from me was being offered for free I'd check it daily.

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