New map tool for real estate listings

While the Microsoft database Utility rebuilds, AGAIN!, my entourage database (and yes, I know I’ll have to delete the file and have it recreated from the Exchange server, but I’m always optimistics with computers) I decided to finally find some time to write something on this now seldom updated blog (and my feeds stats are here to prove this).

After a couple of weeks of implementation and tuning (where we learned that messy Javascript code performs better then the state-of-the-art) we finally released to the public the beta version of the Gabetti map search (a demo video lays on my Flickr page) for real estate listings (those of Gabetti obviously – at the moment).

Nothing so new (apart from the fact that – as far as I know – the ONLY other similar tool in Italy is MAIOM – which we tried back in 2006 to explore the potential of geomapping tools potential for the real estate market): satellite view, small geocoded houses, balloons with overview of the house, AJAX, panning, etc.But I really find useful, and haven’t find in any other site apart Coldwell Banker’s (which works only in Firefox, on my Mac), is the usage of Point Of Interests (POI): we started from the hypothesis that price, square meters, number of rooms are important DETAILS not something you use when deciding to buy or not to buy (I find VERY interesting the usage of POI tha has been done in WalkscoreWhen I bought my home I had two main objectives: i. find it in a pleasant neighborhood and ii. near to all the services that make life more comfortable (supermarkets, cinemas, restaurants, kinder-gardens, etc.) and a satellite view enhanced with POIs makes this task extremely straightforward.We’re still in BETA and are plenty with enhancements to code and deliver (better user experience, better feedback, capability to search for streets and not only for cities, price/sqm filtering capabilities just to cite a few) but are really curious in evaluate how will the tool perform on our web users and how will our RE agents perceive it.

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