So What's New?

11 Nov

I’m a sour puss that’s what :)

As things have melted around in general (ala economy), and some of that bubbling enthusiasm has started to pop (finally), we’ve been sitting here, thinking and doing.

The Thinking: what is local about? I really soured on user reviews a while ago, and as I explore restaurants in NYC, my sourness just gets more … sour? People who have no clue on what is going on throw their opinions as fact. I remember recently reading a review for a purist sushi restaurant where the reviewer gave it a 0/5 because they did not want to make her a California Roll. I don’t want to get into the complexities of if the customer is always right (I don’t believe they are), but why in the hell would you expect a purist place to serve up something like that? Ugh

And that’s just restaurants. I remember reading Jeremy’s (from Yelp) response to a post on Greg Sterling’s blog where he stated (the gist of) “a person knows if a mechanic fixed the car or not.” That statement not only takes a rather bleak view on the complexities of a car (a car that moves is not one that necessarily works well), it also underscores the fact that people don’t know how much some kind of service should cost, and exactly how much it costs.

I know computers. But that is the extent of my ‘deep’ knowledge. And relying on people who don’t really grasp a subject matter well – not my cup of tea.

So that’s the thinking part. Where does iBegin fit? We’ve done a good enough job making base data a commodity (and possibly even more so in the future), but that was never the end-game.

The Doing: So iBegin is morphing. We recently released a new version that is based on the Django platform. It wasn’t fun. When dealing with 80+ million records internally, edge cases prop up in places you didn’t even know existed.

99% of that is ironed out, so what lies in the future? We have two divergent lines. What is becoming more clear is that while the base data is absolutely critical in our future, it isn’t the


I hope that was an excellent balance of both oddly cryptic combined with some tangible information :)

Also – if you are in NYC, I want to meet up with you. So hit me up and let’s grab some coffee (though I don’t drink coffee personally)

3 Responses to So What's New?



November 16th, 2008 at 3:23 pm

Is iBegin transforming from a base data provider (providing information for other sites) to a destination site itself for local?



November 16th, 2008 at 3:40 pm

We have no desire to be a consumer destination at all.

That is why we have customers of our data :)



November 16th, 2008 at 8:36 pm

I was planning to visit around end of Nov or mid Dec. What is the possibility of having some local pizza? :)