Scooped, Bested (and let off the hook)
As a project to help me dive deeper into PHP and MySQL, I decided to put together a GoogleMaps-based site, called Storymap (I even nabbed the domain http://storymap.org
). The general idea was "Here is a place where you can create a map of your own, and use it to help tell a story (ex. "Best coffee spots in Seattle", "Our vacation", "My friends", "Civil War battlefields", etc). The maps would be taggable, public/private, and hosted. Well... Storymap never actually saw the light of day, and now likely never will.
I spent many a night working out details, re-inventing a few wheels so I could learn a number of lessons I really needed. After the initial groundwork, i started losing steam, and running into some serious UI difficulties... The project languished, and I felt guilty about not working it to completion.
Then, a couple weeks ago, I found out about Wayfaring.com
. Wayfaring does exactly
what I was setting out to do, and frankly does it better and slicker. It's such a nice interface, I can't recommend it enough - if you're looking to make your own annotated map.
So, now that Wayfaring totally nailed what I was after, what do I do with Storymap? Walk away and feel great about it. They've filled a need that I felt was out there, and done it very well. My stuff was still weeks from completion, and was really headache-inducing in recent weeks. Plus, I learned a ton from the initial setup, so mission accomplished there.
About the only thing that I had in Storymap that Wayfaring doesn't have is the ability to grab and use Flickr images as map icons, I still hope to see that sort of thing integrated somewhere (I have it prototyped). I'm not going to link to my prototype page, because, frankly it's a bit of a mess. If you're dying to see it, you can drop me a line.
At any rate, it's great to get rid of a nagging project because A) most of my goals were met, and B) somebody else did it justice, and the idea saw the light of day.
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