In case you hadn’t noticed, I love hockey. A buddy named Dave Aiello just told me about a website that he created called RinkAtlas.
He used the Google Maps API and verified and corrected the geocoding to over 1,800 rinks in the fifty states and Puerto Rico. If you ever need to find a rink, this is the site to use. It’s the first mashup that I’ve found useful. :-)
This is picture of me with three members of the Stanley Cup champion Carolina Hurricanes: (left to right) Ray Whitney, me, Bret Hedican, and Craig Adams.
This totally rocks.
(I always forget what a little guy Whits is. Sharks never should have let him go.)
my son went to school with Bret Hedican at St. Cloud State – great guy
of course he is – he’s from MN! :-) we love him here…
he still has a home in the Twin Cities and spends a lot of time “up north” in the Brainerd Lakes area in the summer, where many of us hang out and there’s often talk of “Bret and Kristi” sightings
Super example of a “mashup” of useful feeds creating a better web surfing experience (and especially relevant to us Minnesotans.)
Pundit and CEO of salesforce.com, Mark Benioff, asks in his recent keynote to analysts (http://www.salesforce.com/us/pdf/investor/Appforce_Keynote_Final_Press_Analysts_05-24-06.pdf) “Why can’t business applications be as simple as the consumer web?” pointing out that applications like RinkAtlas and yoga studio review site BikramFinder (http://www.bikramfinder.com/find_studio) may well shape the future of the business web beyond brochureware.
Guy, how about a post on the topic? Lots of great examples at http://www.programmableweb.com.
It’s a good start, but when you zoom out from a town, it should show you the rest of the rinks as the map expands. I’m sure Dave is workin’ on it.
Too bad it does not include canadian ice rinks, where real hockey is played… nudge-nudge! :-)
– a proud fan of the CH
When do we see the picture of you holding the Stanley Cup?
I think I should add all the outdoor official DAHA(Duluth Amatuer Hockey Association) rinks in Duluth, MN. Yes we didn’t play indoors until Pee Wee’s like they do out here in NH.
Thanks for all the feedback on RinkAtlas. Guy’s article brought a lot of additional traffic to the site.
RinkAtlas is all about finding the specific rink you are looking for. At the moment, we are the only site that can provide reasonably accurate door-to-door directions to any indoor ice facility in the United States. All other uses for the site are secondary.
In my estimation, the addresses for one-third of the indoor rinks in the United States are not accurate enough to get you to the front door of the building. If you just type the street address of some rinks into an on-line mapping program and follow the directions, you could end up a quarter of a mile away or more. That’s why I spent weeks verifying addresses using satellite pictures and telephone calls when necessary, and reseting geo coordinates if appropriate.
I plan to build the Canadian part of our database in the same methodical fashion. I hope that our users will see the benefits.
Anyone who has any comments, questions, or suggestions is free to email me at daiello [at] rinkatlas.com.
Cool. I hope the Canadian information gets in there soon. Of course, that information would probably overflow any database ;)
Cool mashup… looking forward to it spreading North of the border. I didn’t realize you were a hockey fan. You still have a couple days left to set up your own free hockey pool at TheCommonFan.com. Considering your following, it would be huge.
FYI – the mashup did not seem to work when I enter our zip 75207 or our city Dallas, Texas. Perhaps your post brought their servers to their knees…
I’ll tell all my husband’s family. They all love Hockey. His one uncle moved to California and when he isn’t playing hockey or ice speed skating he is roller speed skating. His other Uncle is the founder of Hockey Player magazine and Hockeyplayer.com.
My husband and his cousin got up last October at 2am to get rink time at Peaks Arena where the Olympics were in Utah, to shoot the video “101 Hockey tips.”
My problem is that I can’t skate backwards, so i just don’t quite fit in! LOL
I’ve subscribed to that magazine, and I have the 101 DVD! Small world! Small world indeed!
I hope you like the DVD guy. We had a good time making it. I would like to feature this rink finder on the site. Send me an e-mail. Thanks
im a lover from mexico i love to eat and swim like a swan in new york only fridays!u guys should call because like hokey alot!!! its supre my sporT!!!!
This Rink Atlas is a great idea, I can look up the rinks in Vegas I’ll be playing at this April! Kawasaki, I share your love of the Mac and Hockey… And six degrees of separation, I play hockey with Ray Whitney’s brother, also a huge Brett Hedican fan from his Canucks Stanley Cup run in ’94. Guy you need to convert your passion for hockey to the rest of the US population. The NHL need to higher you as a consultant! I understand you are a huge Brett Hull fan – check out my painting of Brett’s dad Bobby Hull and his classic hockey toothless grin on my website. – Jeremie White
Its a cool site, if one is desperate to find a rink, but its weak. I used to play hockey for Rosemount(MN), when I was a kid, so I could really use a site like this…but the layout is mediocre and the search function will not accept a zip code.