Friday, November 05, 2010

Does This App to You?

I was sent an intriguing e-mail from Guide Gecko, a travel book guide seller. I linked to them because they have an affiliate program, so if people buy their travel book through the link on my site, I will make a commission great enough to buy a spool of thread at the 100 forints store. There were no expectations to get rich, because after all, the Amazon store has been on our website for five years; our total earning has come to $7.00. Those profits were meant to go the university department that I teach in, but apparently no one cared to enter Amazon through my portal. I had kept it so clean too.

Well, anyway if you have ever had the fantasy of being a travel writer or an Apple apps writer, here is your green opportunity. Why green? You'll see when you visit the Guide Gecko website.
After I had put their logos on our site, I had a number of suggestions to make life easier for those of us who wanted to rake in the cash. The owner wrote me to say they implemented a number of my ideas, but it has not followed with a fat check for referred sales. He added that they are now authorized to provide travel guide apps for the iPhone so if I wanted to be the first kid on my block to write for them, I should throw my hands in the air waving my excitement before throwing myself on the keyboard to produce. Warned that there would be throngs passing through the gates once they are flung open, if I want to be amongst the first, I should not let a moment pass me by.

Interestingly, while in Riga, we happened to be watching BBC one evening when it was so frigid out everyone who wanted to whoop it up had frozen whoops floating in the air. Strange sight, but anyway BBC travel report just happened to have a segment on smart-phone travel apps. They renounced them like the pope renounces condoms and those of other religions. 

Two primary reasons were pointed out: 
A.) In order to use them, you need to have Internet access, which is primarily while in your hotel where you download the info
B.) Once on the street only the less than savvy traveler with an excellent travel insurance policy is going to pull out their expensive phone on the street to fiddle with, while at the same time becoming a beacon alerting muggers and thieves.
A secondary reason does not take my critical thinking course to hammer out. What credibility stands behind some schmuck who has just written one app or a dozen apps for a smart-phone? If you have a smart-phone + WiFi access + excellent insurance + a taste for extreme sports if mugged, then there are plenty of websites that have garnered a reputation for a positive track record. 

Besides, though I was told I could start producing apps immediately, there was no mention of what I get out of it nor a contract of any kind. Caveat emptor. On the other hand, Permissum exigo caveo or probamus auctrix emus. I need a Latin teacher to check these out. I barely passed Latin in high school.

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Daniel said...


Just wanted to let you know that we have officially released the app program now. There are more details on the revenue share and the terms on

Our apps work completely offline (even the fully interactive maps), so travelers will NOT incur roaming charges while using the app abroad and on the go. I think the BBC didn't realize that is even possible.


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