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Old 10-06-2005, 03:11 AM   #1
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Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 14
Local Aquarium Stores and Supplies: Interactive Map, Reviews

After reading a number of threads asking about stores in local areas, I thought I would make a little contribution to our online community.

I've put together a small web application and database to provide information on stores in ANY local area. In fact there are already over 300 stores nationwide! Hopefully you will find it useful and possibly contribute to the database. The map is interactive in terms of content, new things will show up all the time.

Each of the points on the map is "clickable" and will reveal additional details like address, phone, store hours, website, email, appointment requirements, specialties, and more.

You can manipulate the map too. Controls in the upper left hand corner will allow you to zoom in or out or pan left, right, up, or down.

New Bells and Whistles in this version
* Store Ratings and Reviews - Customers can now write store reviews and provide ratings. The pop-up profile from the map shows the number of reviews and the average rating. There are links to read these reviews or write one of your own.
* Driving Directions - Just enter your starting address in the store profile window and you'll have a customized set of instructions on how to get there.
* Updateable Store Profiles - You can now update existing store profiles with missing or changed data. Store owners can also restrict any maitenance to the owner of the store. If you own a store, please create an account and send me a note indicating which store belongs to you.
* Enhanced Store Information - Many of you requested store hours. The profile now also shows whether appointments are required and any specialties of the house.
* User Profiles - Many of the new features require registration, so you'll be able to update your profile. For now, it keeps track of your home zip code (to center the map) and your preferred zoom level. In the future it was also manage your group/club/society memberships. Just click on the toolbar icon to access your profile.
* Toolbar - A common toolbar is available to always provide access to your account, the "map", and other functions. Future features will be accessible via additional buttons.

Many of the new features will require you to "register". Don't worry, the tool will always be free for customers, so don't sweat it. You also have my word that your email address will not be shared.

Just go to http://www.zoyzoy.com/aquarium/login.asp to sign on.

You'll find a button for new users. The basic map features are still available without registration. Click on the preview link to view the nation-wide map. You can provide a zip code to see what's already been added in your local area or zoom in on any region of the country. If nothing exists, please add the stores you know about!

Please let me know if you encounter problems. I'm counting on you to kick the tires before letting everyone else in on it.

Thanks to everyone for their thoughts and participation. We have almost 300 stores now nationwide! Please feel free to let others (beyond ReefCentral) know all about it.

More to come! Enjoy!

VoiceOfReason is offline  
Old 10-06-2005, 10:30 AM   #2
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Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Gainesville, FL
Posts: 617
Very cool. But Google maps already does that. Go to your city on Google map and click "Find businesses" (next to search button). Then search on "aquarium". Brought up every place in my town that I know of.

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Old 10-06-2005, 01:10 PM   #3
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Not quite....

Google does do something similar...though far less effective.
They use key words in the names of businesses to plot them on the map. That's about it.

In this case, all the content is specific to the hobby, plus the application provides store-specific information, rating and reviews, plus much more to come.

Have a look around at location like Southern California and you'll see. Most people have learned about a number of new stores in their area.

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Old 10-07-2005, 10:06 AM   #4
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Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Western NY
Posts: 4,064
It will be interesting to see what kind of response you get.

((going to move this to the lounge as these sorts of posts "advertisements" should only be there, and only once a month, as per the user agreement.))
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Old 10-07-2005, 03:55 PM   #5
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The reponse has been more than I ever anticipated. Over 300 stores, 200 users, a few dozen reviews/ratings. Pretty much all in the last few days!

Thanks for the clarification on posting rules. I dont want to step on any toes. FYI...the service is entirely free to hobbyists. The donation button was only intended to let folks contribute to help keep the site running. No one has yet! Ha!

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Old 08-01-2006, 07:34 PM   #6
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Just checking back in....

We've fixed the problems that plagued users of Internet Explorer.

We continue to grow daily. Over 500 stores nationwide. Come check us out!


Don't forget to contribute. Is a store missing that you know about? Add it? Have an opinion? Write a review. Your participation is what makes the resource valuable!


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