Now Featuring Neighborhoods in Global Places

Today we tagged nearly fourteen million Factual places with neighborhoods. This new data is available now to all Factual partners at no additional cost.

You can see the 50 country breakdown in our Global Places data, including over seven million places tagged with neighborhoods in the US alone. Factual API users will now see the ‘neighborhood’ attribute in all returns from the global table that have been tagged:

     "neighborhood":[
          "Grandes Carrières-Clichy",
          "Montmartre"]

or

     "neighborhood":[
          "Pill Hill",
          "Peralta Villa"]

We’ve used Flickr Neighborhoods to tag our places. This data is in turn based on the Yahoo Geoplanet dataset, which takes a liberal attitude towards what constitutes a ‘neighborhood’ — basically any informal, local geography. We’re fans of this resource because its use does not impose upstream license encumberances on our users, it increases discoverability of the data, and, lastly, it is not tessellated (the neighborhoods overlap), which we think better reflects the situation in the real world.

We hope you find this a useful enhancement to Factual data. As ever, If you don’t yet have one, get your Factual API key here.

-Tyler Bell
(Puts on cardigan zipper sweater, removes dress shoes for sneakers)

Factual Node.js Driver

We’re pleased to announce the release of the officially supported Node.js driver for Factual.

Get going!

You can get the driver using npm…

$ npm install factual-api

…and then install it in your project and connect:

var Factual = require('factual-api');
var factual = new Factual('YOUR_KEY', 'YOUR_SECRET');

(If you don’t have an API key, sign up to get one. It’s free and easy.)

Basic Query Example

Do a full-text search of the restaurant database for rows that match the terms “Coffee, Los Angeles”

factual.get('/t/restaurants-us',{q:"Coffiee, Los Angeles"}, function (error, res) {
  console.log("show "+ res.included_rows +"/"+ res.total_row_count +" rows:", res.data);
});

You can find out more about basic query capabilities in the docs for our Core API docs.

Geo Filter Example

The driver supports all of Factual’s Geo Filtering. Here’s an example of finding Starbucks locations near a latitude, longitude:

factual.get('/t/places', {q:"starbucks",
                          geo:{"$circle":{"$center":[34.041195,-118.331518],"$meters":1000}}},
                          function (error, res) {
  console.log(res.data);
});

Crosswalk Example

Factual’s Crosswalk service lets you map third-party (Yelp, Foursquare, etc.) identifiers for businesses or points of interest to each other where each ID represents the same place.

Here’s an example using the Node.js driver to query with a factual id, getting entites from Yelp and Foursquare:

factual.get('/places/crosswalk', {"factual_id":"57ddbca5-a669-4fcf-968f-a1c8210a479a",
                                   only:"yelp,foursquare"},
                                   function (error, res) {
  console.log(res.data);
});

Resolve

Use Factual’s Resolve to enrich your data and match it against Factual’s:

//
// Resolve an entity, starting with the business name and location:
//
factual.get('/places/resolve', {values:{"name":"huckleberry",
                                        "latitude":34.023827,
                                        "longitude":-118.49251}},
                                function (error, res) {
  console.log(res.data);
});

We’ve put great effort into making our public API fast. We know you expect your Node projects to be fast too. Use this driver to access Factual’s data platform, be fast, and go do great work!

Sincerely,
Aaron
Software Engineer

Silicon Beach Hackathon Developer Contest


We’re excited to announce that we will be sponsoring the Silicon Beach Hackathon, part of this year’s Silicon Beach Fest, a festival to celebrate everything that’s great and unique about the LA tech community.  As part of the event we will be holding a hackathon developer contest and will be awarding Free Accelerated Access to the Factual API for one year, plus $500 in Amazon Gift Cards to the Silicon Beach Hackathon team that makes best use of Factual’s APIs.

What: Silicon Beach Hackathon
When: June 21 – 23, 2012
Where: Cross Campus 820 Broadway, Santa Monica
More Details: http://siliconbeachfest.com/hackathon.html

Contest Rules

Eligibility:

  1. Team and team members must be registered participants at Silicon Beach HackathonJune 21 – 23, 2012
  2. Your project must make use of the Factual API.

Prize:

The winning team will be awarded Free Accelerated Access to the Factual API for one year, plus $500 in Amazon gift cards to be shared among team members.

Judging:

We will judge entries based on the following criteria

  • Creativity
  • Uniqueness
  • Usefulness
  • Design
  • Maturity of prototype (we will judge a functional prototype higher than a slide deck)

Support

Got questions?  Check out our API docs.  Technical questions can be directed to our support page. For all other questions, email us at hack@factual.com.

Getting Started with Factual

  1. Take a look at our Global Places Data and APIs.
  2. Visit our API docs and list of drivers and code examples to get acquainted with our API.
  3. Obtain a developer key and get hacking.

New Hotel Data From Factual

We’re pleased to announce that Factual has released the first version of our Extended Attributes for Hotels. This dataset contains an additional 38 attributes for over 115,000 hotels, motels, B&Bs, and other lodgings in the United States, released in beta.

While Factual Places Data contains the core attributes such as name, location, address and phone number, these rich vertical datasets hold data tailored to a specific vertical. Our Hotels data contains information on:

  • Price range
  • Room count
  • Star rating
  • Air conditioning
  • Pets allowed
  • Non-smoking rooms available
  • Parking
  • In-room internet
  • Facilities like pool, fitness, business center, laundry and PA services
  • Complimentary breakfast
  • Check-in and check-out times
  • Room service availability
  • Handicapped accessibility
  • Bar/lounge in hotel

In all, 38 additional attributes to help your users make more informed hotel choices.

This table can be queried using your existing API key (get one here if needed) and the existing API.  Browse our data preview and have a look at the hotels documentation to learn more.

Tyler Bell
Dial-D-for-Data

Launching Monetize API

UPDATE – Factual is no longer providing access to the Monetize API for new users, and the service will be completely shut down as of December 1, 2013.

We’re excited to announce today a new member of the Factual suite of APIs: Monetize. Use Monetize to tap into an aggregated and geo-indexed body of 3rd party deals, ads, coupons and offers.

Factual’s data platform has grown from our initial Places (58 million places across 50 countries) to several supporting APIs, like Crosswalk, Resolve, and Geopulse. These all provide access to unique signals and insights we have gleaned from our data aggregation stack and position as a central layer in the location data ecosystem. A natural extension is the inclusion of 3rd party conversion opportunities that are associated with a given place – cue Monetize.

Get Cash

The way Monetize works is that Factual aggregates offer data through relationships with offer originators (companies like Groupon, LivingSocial, GrubHub, and Signpost). We then map offers to Factual place entities, and make the offers accessible through a simple scalable API. Developers can integrate these offers into their apps and earn money based on the conversions they are driving — this API actually pays you. Factual will cut you checks when your users buy offers: show them a great sushi deal that’s nearby, and if they buy it, you earn bucks. With this service, you no longer need to integrate with multiple offer APIs or affiliate programs, or implement multiple tracking tools. We even autogenerate 320×50 images for each offer so you can integrate it as a regular mobile ad unit.

The data is accessible using the current Factual API — use a lat/lng filter (what offers are near a point in NYC), full text search (what offers contain “burger”), or row filters (offers in “Austin, TX”). You can get more details on accessing the data in our docs. We also expose the data in a preview tool here.

You can access Monetize immediately with your existing Factual API key, but before we start paying you, you’ll need to register your use with us. If you have offers and want to distribute them through Monetize, please contact us – we definitely will be growing the number of offer providers in the next several months.

Don’t hesitate to hit us up with feedback and feature requests.

Best,
Bill Michels

VP Product Management & Partnerships