Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on September 7th, 2006 at 7:55 am
You might have noticed that I just posted 72 stolen bike listings. Sorry for the onslaught (especially those of you that read via my RSS feed) but I can explain everything.
But before I do, check out this video clip from FOX News (KPTV) that aired a few days ago. It features an interview with yours truly as well as someone who recovered their bike here on BikePortland.org.
OK, back to the explaining…
For the past month or so, I’ve been working with local web programmer Michael Jones of Code in Motion. We’ve been working to integrate his Finetoothcog service with my Stolen Bike Listings.
Finetoothcog takes a stolen bike listing and then automatically scans Craigslist (just Portland for now and soon eBay too) for any matches. If a similar listing is found (meaning someone might be trying to sell your bike), you can be instantly notified.
In addition to scanning for your bike, Jones’ web wizardry can do other cool stuff like automatically create a Google Map of stolen bike locations (coming soon), run queries to find what type of locks are being defeated, what brand of bikes are stolen most often, and much more.
According to Jones, “Once you’ve got the listings and data, you can do all sorts of cool things.”
From now on, all my stolen bike listings will use this form on Finetoothcog.com. When the data is submitted, the bike is entered into the Finetoothcog system as well as becoming a post here on BikePortland.org where it will be seen by thousands of Portland cyclists every day.
With these two sites working together, I think we offer one of the best and most high-tech stolen bike recovery services you’ll find anywhere.
The coolest thing is that we’re just getting started. We have lots of ideas to make the service even better so stay tuned as we refine, tweak and add to this great service.