Web 2.0 Innovation Map

Introducing the Web 2.0 Innovation Map. We all know Silicon Valley is hot when it comes to web startups. But, what about other areas of the country? Are there any hidden hotbeds of web talent? What other groups were in the northwest along with Fourio? These were some of the questions I was looking to answer. Now, Web 2.0 can be visualized, using what else, but the Google Maps API and Yahoo Geocoding API.

I’ve taken 200 applications, tracked down their addresses, geocoded them, and placed them on the map. With some help from Todd on the design, this map was put together in the last week. It was much more work than I thought it would be to track down the addresses. Without a good (open/free/structured) WHOIS API, most of the address lookups were manual. And don’t get me started on sites not listing a contact address. Fortunately, my geocoder app worked great, so getting lats/longs was fairly painless. Then it was just a matter of exporting the Excel data to a JavaScript array and hooking it up to the map.

On a side note, I’m not here to debate the “Web 2.0” term. For this application, Web 2.0 is simply defined by the explosion of internet applications that have come out over the last year or so. I’ve used other people’s lists to compile the apps to be mapped.

The map isn’t completely finished (what web application ever is?). I’d like to add descriptions, include company information, and maybe add a little thumbnail of the site. But, I like to release early and see what kind of interest there is before investing too much time. Any feedback is appreciated.

If anybody knows of a good source for WHOIS data, or has a well structured (XML preferably) list of web apps with the name, url, and brief description (along the lines of an API for eHub or TechCrunch), please let me know.

Thanks to Adam Trachtenberg’s eBay Motors & Google Maps mashup for being a great example of how to do a mashup. It’s one of my favorites as far as implementation goes and was a big inspiration for the innovation map.

Update:
I see that TechCrunch has added an OPML file, which is a very big help. The one problem is that it points to the TechCrunch post. If there was something similar that pointed to the actual site’s URL, that would be awesome.