June 30, 2009
Anatomy of a mashup

So, yesterday afternoon, Morten suggested it would be cool if there was a site that could score the days at Roskilde against personal preferences as expressed through Last.fm.
Indeed it would be, and since Morten does nice minimal interfaces and I do data gathering and mixing, we agreed to split the work, and build the Best day at Roskilde-finder.

It's worthwhile to have a look at what infrastructure we have used for this and which situational hacks are involved. I didn't have to scrape the concert program myself, as Steffen had already done that, through Yahoo's YQL.
What I needed to do is mine Last.fm's API for relevancy for those bands to merge with the user's favorite bands.
Present that to Morten's website as simply as possible and let Morten make a useful interface for the data.

It doesn't quite end there, though. Morten had previously exploited live play information from Danish National Radio to create a radio station persona on Last.fm.
Through Spotify, using Spotify's Last.fm integration he is also building a Roskilde Festival persona.
- these will give more general than personal answers: "If you're the kind of person listening to this radio station you will like".

It's interesting how much infrastructure is available - and useful - for a mashup like this.

We're using Yahoo, Last.fm, Danish Radio's website, Roskilde's website and Spotify as data sources/web services - and combining preexisting situational hacks from 3 people, on top of the obvious webservers and direct hacking.
These resources can be combined, and hidden away, in less than 10 hours to produce a coherent, simple and fun website.

Add instant distribution through Facebook and Twitter (Facebook wins) and there's a nice useful bit of mashup for an intended audience of 200-10000 people.

Posted by Claus at June 30, 2009 12:48 PM | TrackBack (0)
Comments (post your own)

impressive.. and it turns out there wasn't much for me at roskilde..

mikkel metal and 2562... thats about it.

Posted by: morten wilken on June 30, 2009 1:31 PM

And its not just a case of not enough Last.fm plays?

- actually I think what I was trying to say is that this kind of thing is getting really easy to do - which more people should know about and start taking advantage of.

Posted by: Classy on June 30, 2009 1:36 PM

That's very cool.

It seems we are not at a point in web history where open APIs is the norm and mashing together apps like yours is easy.

An idea for a start-up could be to make an easy to use web app with User Interface with drag'n'drop to make new mashups for "the rest of us". Think Yahoo! Pipes for mashups.
Perhaps such web apps already exists?

Posted by: Stefan Bøgh-Andersen on June 30, 2009 2:32 PM

23-Steffen and I tweeted about exactly that a little earlier. The problem is having a venue just for the firehose; to achieve separation of effort. We might just riff about that some time over summer.

In terms of ease of doing - all the smart tools I've seen are geared towards data for the individual; or ridiculously expensive; or simply nice libraries that make stuff easy in your favourite language.

Posted by: Classy on June 30, 2009 2:50 PM
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