Shostack + Friends Blog Archive


Why the heck don't I ever have ideas this good?
Calculates a location’s “walkability” by using Google Maps to figure out how close various amenities (such as grocery stores, public transit, parks, etc.) are.
Not a perfect service, but a great idea.

3 comments on "Why the heck don't I ever have ideas this good?"

  • Nicko says:

    That’s great! Just what we need for finding a place to live in the Bay area.
    By way of leaking some personally identifying information, my spies tell me that the home of one of the founders of this Jazz Combo of the Blogosphere has a Walk Score of 100 🙂

  • It is a cool idea, but only as good as the underlying data. My neighborhood by the HP pavilion in downtown San Jose gets a fantastic score but several things are wrong.
    1. They call a nearby produce wholesale warehouse as a place to buy produce – it isn’t.
    2. They count the nearby rally crappy mini-market as a grocery store – it isn’t.
    Just a few examples of course, but more of a warning that your mileage will definitely vary.

  • Chris says:

    @Nicko: Dang! I only got a 91.
    @Andy: the biggest issue I have is that the mileage is as the crow flies. Not that big a deal in some cases, but as they note at the site, a big deal if the nearest grocery is across a mile-wide pond :^).
    So, there is no substitute for actually being there, but sites like this can be useful in providing an approximation.
    I say build logic like this into automotive GPSes, that way at a certain point they can say “get out and walk!” :^)

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