Reading Radar API mashup


Boing Boing guestblogger Connie Choe is a health and culture writer by day and a professional kimchimonger by night. 

"Mashup posterboy" John Herren has created a site called Reading Radar that splices The New York Times bestseller list with selected, up-to-date information from in one clean, clutter-free place.

This is stupendous because the NYT bestseller list basically just tells you that a lot of people are buying a particular book, but it never tells you how many of those people sincerely regretted purchasing the aforementioned book. For example, the current #1 bestseller on the hardcover fiction list is Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol, which famously sold 1 million copies in its first day of release. High sales volume doesn't automatically mean it's worth reading though. Especially when Reading Radar juxtaposes its NYT bestseller status with its Amazon customer review status (a measly 2.5 out of 5 stars).

Herren — who created TagCloud as a weekend project a few years ago — says that Reading Radar took just "a few nights of hacking" and describes the process in detail on his blog. "It was trivial to slap together," he comments, "To the point where I'd hardly consider it programming. But hey, at least I deployed something."