Saturday 22 April 2006

News from the world of search

Some new developments from Google and Yahoo were announced recently. And also some third-party goodies. 

First, there are some new tools for Google Calendar. The calendar data API was released, enabling developers to build scheduling applications with Google Calendar running on the back end. The API uses the standard GData protocol for submitting queries. There's also a companion Java client library.

For the Windows users among us, some bloke called Lifehacker has this tidbit about the application getCals that syncs all of your calendars to your iPod using Google Calendar.  Very cleaver.

The latest new search product to emerge from beta is Yahoo's FareChase. The service works by searching multiple travel brokers to help you comparison shop for airfare. I don't think it is the first app to do this, but FareChase does have some pretty slick features. I searched every available site in the system for tickets from Sydney to Paris and saw my search results list fill up one entry at a time thanks to a little bit of Ajax.

There's also a cool live progress bar that you can see in the screenshot below. So, when the search was completed, that space taken up by the progress bar was replaced by some sponsored links. The tables even have rounded corners!

Not surprisingly, FareChase also offers complete integration with Yahoo's mapping service, making it easier to find a hotel that's within walking distance of your favorite bars and record stores. Oui?


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