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Stray Thoughts

Archive for the ‘Site Features’ Category

Share and Follow Lost & Found Pets Ireland on Google Buzz

Monday, August 23rd, 2010

Once again the title says it all folks.  I have just added easy sharing to Buzz on the lost and found pet listings pages and you now can follow Lost and Found Pets Ireland via Buzz.

Its unclear at this point what the eventual fate of Buzz will be with the much rumoured ‘Google Me’ social network apparently not to far off but it seems a reasonable guess that Buzz will be incorporated somehow into whatever new framework emerges.  Particualrly in light of Facebook’s bold move with their use of the Open Graph protocol, it is hard to believe that Google will not now make some form of aggressive move in the social networking space so I felt it was worth taking our place there.

Geotagging Your Pet Listing Just Got Easier

Thursday, April 22nd, 2010

Following on from my previous post announcing the addition of geolocation information to the free lost and found pet listings we have been watching how people are coping with marking the location of their loss or find on the map.

It seems that most people found the process of manipulating the map to get an accurate location quite tricky and when I got a submission this evening which placed a poor lost cat in the sea off the coast of Cork, I decided it was time to take a look at what I could do to simplify the process.

I have now added an interface below the map where posters can enter an address, street or road name, suburb or townland and county and we will have Google try to locate that area on the map and zoom in on it which should take most of the trickier manipulation out of the geolocation process for users.

Hope it helps.

Geotagged Lost and Found Pet Listings Go Live

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

Pets with Latitude!

Well the title says it all.  Today we started providing the facility to geotag the lost and found pet listings posted to the site via a simple map interface in our listing submission wizard.

Location Location Location

Geotagged lost and found pet listings in IrelandWhile we are not the first Irish site to do this (though it could be a first that we’re not the first doing something :)), I think we push this technology significantly beyond what others are doing with it as we are adding the geolocation information to each listing page in machine readable micro format which should help with rankings for location based searches via Google and the other search engines.  In addition we  are geotagging our listing tweets on Twitter and our pet photo posts to Flickr where they will automagically appear on our map.  We are also including the geolocation information in our lost and found pets listings RSS feeds.

With Facebook (where we recently welcomed our 1,000th fan) rumoured to be on the verge of allowing users and developers to leverage geolocation information in apps and posts, and with the latest version of Firefox and those with GPS equipped phones now able to share their location with websites, we see a great opportunity to provide more relevant information to our users.

The site now features an map view of all current lost and found pet  listings in Ireland on our site for a bird’s eye view and each geotagged listing comes complete with its own map.

As with all new features, your feedback is more than welcome.

Lost and Found Pets Ireland – Now Without Borders

Sunday, January 17th, 2010

Just a very quick post to announce that we are now accepting UK mobile numbers for lost and found listings which means our friends in Northern Ireland can now post their listings. I had originally intended to do this as you can see from the counties displayed on the site but somehow the validation of the phone numbers got put on the long finger with everything else that has been going on. Pets don’t pay much attention to borders and I think that’s a pretty sensible position.

Anyway, spurred on by Evie from North West Pet Rescue and having consulted the relevant Ofcom document on the matter, I have enabled numbers starting with the digits 071, 072, 073, 074, 075, 077, 078 and 079 to be submitted.

If anyone in Northern Ireland has any problems submitting with their particular UK mobile number they can contact me and I will do my best to resolve the issue.

Our Lost & Found Pet Posters Get High-Tech with QR Codes

Saturday, January 16th, 2010

Over the course of the past 6 months it has become apparent that while all the tech and social media facilities for sharing listings are all very well and good, often the most effective means of getting pets reunited with owners is via the traditional lost and found pet poster.  Indeed it was the way I managed to locate the owner of the dog I found myself which inspired this website.

Since we launched we have offered a facility on the site to print out a custom lost or found pet poster you can distribute locally but now we are bringing a little tech from the website right onto the poster by including QRcodes.

The QRCode containing our URLThese codes work a little like barcodes – with a suitable application on your phone, you can point your camera at one and the information contained within is transferred automatically to your phone, whether it be (as in the case of our posters) a web address to store on your phone, a phone number to dial or just a simple text message.

So today we score another first as these barcodes have gone live on all posters and you can view and test an example above which contains simply the web address for this site.

Depending on the make and model of your phone, there are a number of (usually free) scanning applications available.  I have listed some below for your convenience.

I-nigma reader, by 3GVision
Install via mobile browser:
or download to a computer and transfer it to your mobile device from

NeoReader, by NeoMedia Technologies / Gavitec AG – mobile digit
Install via mobile browser:

UpCode reader, by UPC
Install via mobile browser:
or download to a computer and transfer it to your mobile device from

Semacode reader, by Semacode
Install via mobile browser:
or download to a computer and transfer it to your mobile device from

QuickMark reader
Download to a computer and transfer it to your mobile device from