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Virginia Bicycling Federation

Crowdsourcing is being used for bike planning in Blacksburg, VA. Local cyclists have been asked to map their daily commutes with a web application. The data collected will help the town plan and prioritize road improvements, to make commuting by bike safer and encourage more people to do it.

Ben Ziegler

Hi Beth, Thanks for sharing your experience. Your post makes me think that guide books (e.g., Lonely Planet) will have morphed into some hybrid (hardcopy/online) before too long - e.g., accepting real-time updates from travelers as they go about their journeys.

Robyn McIntyre

Neat post. In Santa Cruz, crowdsourcing was used for one very interesting art installation that involved placing spotlights all to be turned on at a specific time. It was quite the success.


I like your views. Very interesting one. I visited California coast one year ago and it was very nice experience for me.

Deborah Mourey

this isn't a non profit story but a college student was here visting his parents who had moved here while he was away at school. he planned to be here about 3 weeks so on twitter he asked for fun and interesting things to do. He got lots of ideas and tweeted about his adventures, my guess he met with all kinds of people he never would have if he'd tried other forms of 'figuring out' what to do.

I enjoyed experiencing our city through the eyes of a new comer and he sounded like he had a great time. (I doubt he even thought of looking at a guidebook!) :) as always Beth, you are great. thanks so much,Deb Mourey

JD Lasica

This tradition has a long pedigree. Before my honeymoon in Greece in 1996, I asked for suggestions from online strangers about places to stay and things to do in the Greek isles.

I got a lot of valuable suggestions, and the technique was so novel at the time that I wrote a travel piece about it that got published in the Chicago Tribune, Miami Herald, Newsday, Philly Inquirer, SF Examiner and elsewhere:

Cruising the Greek islands (with a little help from some Netheads)

I like the term crowdsourcing -- which didn't exist at the time -- better than Netheads. :~)

Megan Hussey

Yes, crowdsourcing is a great idea with numerous possible applications. I'm currently working with a company, Squad Help, that uses this concept to help businesspeople find ideal domain names. Crowdsurfacing is an idea whose time has come, whether it's for personal or professional purposes.

Melinda Lewis

I love this! We do the same thing, especially b/c traveling with three small children (as we do!) requires insights especially from those with similar experiences, and there aren't enough such people in our "real" world. Happy New Year, and happy birthday!

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