82 thoughts on “How Placebase Survived Google Maps”

  1. @om — “…the company, which is completely bootstrapped (read again: no VC dollars)…”

    Om, most small businesses are entirely bootstrapped. No VC. Personal/friend/family/credit-card investing.

    Its only recently (last few years) that the average college grad exited college with a plan to make a business that they could not monetize, hope for VC’s to pay for the bill, and a quick buyout from one of those other companies that were initially bootstrapped. Sigh.

    Its getting to the point where a company like funadvice.com (which i am a co-founder), which is bootstrapped, no funding, profitable and hires employees, will never get press from the a-list bloggers.

    After all, we’re too boring 🙂

  2. @ Ericsson,

    Actually not true. Sure we don’t have that many boot strapped companies getting coverage here, but we do make an effort to find non VC/boot strapped companies. Stay tuned as we beef up our start-up coverage.

  3. @ Ericsson,

    > Personal/friend/family/credit-card investing.

    Paul Graham of Y Cominbator (is Y Combinator a “VC” firm?) says:


    > [3] Do not finance your startup with credit cards.
    > Financing a startup with debt is usually a stupid
    > move, and credit card debt stupidest of all. Credit
    > card debt is a bad idea, period. It is a trap set
    > by evil companies for the desperate and the
    > foolish.

  4. It would be great to have Mr. Jaron Waldman sharing with the startup community his findings along the time he is competing with Google/free. For sure all of us got a lot to learn from his experience.
    Is that possible?

  5. As a sociology major I find this incredibly interesting, and may have to pay for the service just to play with it. We used data in a program that could map data by county, but including “regular” map functions is very intriguing. Is there more crime surrounding late-night pizza places? Do rich people choose to live further from the noise of the highway, or closer because they commute to work by car? This is really a pretty valuable and unique tool. Thanks for posting.

    1. Check out the patent of Cycore (the Alladessa project) on combining georelated data sets. Someone’s gonna have to buy it eventually… 😉

    2. Another way you can create your own maps is my buddy Jeff’s Cartagen. It’s open-source, draws client-side vector maps using HTML 5, and uses stylesheets to allow you to easily change appearance and behavior.

      1. Cartagen? Really? Does your buddy Jeff understand the concept of caching….and even blending cached tiles? How does he possibly hope to compete with other products when his maps are slow as molasses? I haven’t seen webmaps that slow since 1999. I love the simple interface and styles, but it’s ridiculously slow! He needs to do some more research into web mapping technology…. But I will say I like the HTML5 angle there….he’s definitely onto something going in that direction.

  6. http://deadcellzones.com is forever grateful for the relationship with Placebase. Incredible team and great product that we have used from 2 years to aggregate cell phone coverage complaints from AT&T, Verizon, Sprint & T-Mobile. The crusade has just begun with a crack in what hopes to be open mobile net neutrality.

  7. This is the leading edge of what will soon be acknowledged by society as a huge war between Apple and Google. Its is a fact that when programming with MapKit, particularly for a private app, Google Maps policy is “hey, use it for free but if yu start making a load of money will be butt in for mmmm who knows how much!” This is not acceptable for Apple or the market.

    Hello Pacebase.com!

    Dr. Lewis
    Computer Science Department
    University of Colorado Colorado Springs

  8. It would be impressive

    If the world was confined to the United States of America
    however some of us live in little places like “London, United Kingdom” that don’t seem to be mapped.
    Google’s map covers the whole world

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