I’ve been doing some research into pet-friendly apartments in the Northwestern Columbus, Ohio area, specifically Dublin. I’ve been compiling a list of apartment complexes with their addresses and phone numbers in a Google Doc Spreadsheet. But I thought it would be neat to map them all on one map and see spatially where they are located. So I decided to make a custom Google Map with them all! I’m also trying to record some details such as if there is an additional cost for pets, if they only allow cats or small dogs, etc. Here is the embedded version:
I’ve been busy making some great improvements to the Pawfect Lounge: Pet Connection website!
I picked a cleaner, professional theme for the home page (blog), and I’d like to carry that over to the business search page as well, or at least continue improving the design. Let me know if you have any feedback for the design and user experience of the site.
I’ve added a map to the pages where a business is added to/edited in the system. When you enter the address and then move the input focus to another field, an asynchronous service call is made to the Bing Map control to map the address you just entered. The latitude and longitude of the business is stored in the database. If the business does not publish its exact address (e.g. for home-based businesses that visit client’s homes), just enter the city/town that is in the center of the business’ served areas. The business will be mapped to the center of the town. Storing the latitude and longitude in the database prevents us from needing to map the businesses on-the-fly after performing a search. This should make it much more efficient.
Zip Code Map
Since many businesses do not post an exact address, and rather just give a number of zip codes or towns they serve, I’ve added a zip code map of Columbus, Ohio. This can be found as a separate link in the main navigation menu.
No Reviews or Ratings
I’ve decided to give up on creating yet another review site for the businesses. Instead, I’d like to make it more of a social networking tool. For the business you find, you can find links to all of the review websites and social networks it can be found on. That way you can check out which ones you’re interested in, and do your own research on the reputation of the business. Eventually it would be nice to pull the data from all the review sites behind-the-scenes and display the results in one section of the business details page. But this would mean that the sites would need to offer a way for me to query for the data, and it would take a lot of time to process the different data sets.
I’m still working on improving the design of the results page. I’ve added some scripts so that the map follows along when you scroll up and down. Then you can click the ‘Zoom’ link on a business, and not have to scroll back up to the top to see the map. I still need to add some sort of paging function so the list doesn’t get too long. As always, let me know if you have any feedback! Thanks for using the site!
I found some new podcasts relating to dogs and animals the other day. PetLifeRadio contains several different podcasts and resources you can find on their website. I found ‘It’s a Doggy Dog World’ and ‘Talkin Pets’ on Blubrry, a podcast directory/community. I’ve subscribed to both in my Google Reader, but only listened to part of one episode from Talkin Pets. But I learned about the Genesis Awards on Animal Planet; these recognize TV shows and films that try to portray a message about improving the lives of animals and humane practices.
I also found a podcast on Dachshunds on Blubrry. The home page for this blog/podcast is at http://www.3doxies.com. I haven’t listened to any of the episodes yet, but they seem to give some great tips for pet owners.