We’ve written about some of the cool things that you can do with the foursquare API. We’ve seen visualizations of check-ins, and tools to help you find places around highway exits. But what if you just want to see all of the check-ins going on around you in real-time?
4SQoogle mashes up the foursquare API with Google Maps to show you any locations venues and live check-ins in real-time. The site doesn’t drill into who actually checked in, but it’s a nice way to see what venues are the most popular around you at any given time.
While the site is merely a mashup and not a product, it would be nice to get a bit more information about venues, or at least a direct link to the venue page on foursquare. I found it difficult to use the service to find somewhere new to eat, for example.
Train stations are hot right now
When I put my general location into 4SQoogle, I noticed that little icons would jump up and down when there was check-in activity. It seems like the service shows check-ins in something close to real-time, because I tested it by checking into my apartment complex.
As I watched the map, I saw a few check-ins at the local train station here in San Francisco. It would be interesting to leave 4SQoogle up on an extra monitor all day to see if you can pick up any check-in trends based on the time of day.
While the site could add some more features as I mentioned, it’s a real interesting visualization of the usage on foursquare. The foursquare service has definitely gone mainstream coast to coast in the U.S., as I continually hear people ask each other “did you check-in?” at restaurants in cities like NYC, Philly, and San Francisco.
4SQoogle shows you “what’s hot” based on the number of “live check-ins”, which means the number of total check-ins since you opened the site. You can also search the site as you would on Google Maps for specific address and locations.
It’s a great way to see what’s going on around you, and perhaps you’ll find a new favorite bar or even a train station that has lots of people visiting it.