April 06, 2005

Starbucks Delocator Doesn't Work In Big Cities


Despite the rounds this is making on the net as a poster child of prior restraint chilling effects, this is a really handy site. It basically shows you independent coffee houses near your zip code, which is a wonderful idea. But... it's got a problem.

Instead of relying on an address check, it's looking for zip codes which are numerically near by. This doesn't work, at least, in Atlanta. I was getting results for Alpharetta, GA (30022) in Duluth, GA (30030), nearly 30 miles away. For future reference, zip codes are added to areas as they grow larger, and don't necessarily indicate proximity. In fact, in large metro areas, zip codes almost never are close together. I'd say that's a bigger problem than any chilling effect.

Posted by Ted Stevko at April 6, 2005 01:30 PM | TrackBack