It came to my attention a few days ago that the WNYC Data News Team has beaten me to the punch when it comes to New York City maps populated with ice cream shop locations. It’s called Ice Cream Radar.
Type in your intersection or address, and it’ll spit out a map marked with nearby ice cream shops. For ice cream purists who wish only to patronize local establishments (aka picky yuppies such as myself), you can filter out chains and fro-yo. The data comes from the foursquare and Yelp APIs and New York City restaurant inspection records. That’s cool and all, but the data contains some questionable results.
For example, putting in my intersection (please don’t stalk me) shows three nearby shops. Neither the red cone nor the purple cone are actually ice cream shops. The green cone is a Baskin-Robbins, so that’s accurate. But for some reason, the Baskin-Robbins on 145th Street and Broadway didn’t show up, possibly because it’s also a Dunkin’ Donuts.
Regardless of the false positives, props to WNYC for making this delightful widget. It has shown me that 1) there is demand for tools that display data about ice cream and 2) the data needs to be refined and curated. Therefore, I declare that this Ice Cream Radar has not rendered my ice cream directory project redundant. There is great value and utility in content curation and deep storytelling. And that’s what I plan to offer with my version of an ice cream radar.