I guess I am nitpicking. :)
In the article it says:
> Hipmunk's flight-goggled chipmunk mascot has the same "awww" factor as Twitter's iconic bluebird. With that, Hipmunk was born.
But I think it goes far beyond the Twitter bird, which to me looks very sterile and artificial. This little guy is cool, like the Scrat character from ice-age.
Chipmunk isn't bad either.
I think the most important feature we have is that we remove about 80% of results from listings because they're totally redundant.
We also have draggable time sliders, instant sorting, and multiple searches in tabs, all of which are things we added to make finding flights less tedious.
Also, you can't book tickets on matrix...
Find a way to get Southwest in your output and I'll never use another site.
The hipmunk version actually has a ranking and crowding function, whereas matrix just lists them all.
what's a hipmunkserver? Is that a changed server id or is it really something custom?
I put in a search for a flight that I recently booked, and the two top choices were the ones that we had pulled out of tens of kayak searches. They were right there. Not the cheapest, but the most sane. Kayak had a couple of flights in the early results with a 12 hour layover in Pdx followed by a 30 min flight to Seatac. They were way down in the agony listing on hipmonk.
Also, any chance it will be possible to search for date ranges rather than exact departure and return dates?
Third, a mouseover for airport codes and airline names would be great.
Perhaps you are aiming for frequent business travelers that have fixed dates and know all the airport codes by heart, but I thought I'd share my thoughts.
Speaking of travel visualizations... a shameless plug for my own "Hotels.com hotels on Google Maps" site: http://www.roomatlas.com. Live prices in the markers, Street View and Wikipedia placemarks.
This is a good thing. It's sad how few of the great ideas in that essay have been realized.
Also, props for the great customer service (had a very helpful chat with someone) and for the continuous deployment while launching (was told "reload your page, and check out this new feature we just pushed").
Do I need real airport codes?
What's especially commendable is the fact that the search works quite nicely over intercontinental flights with many connections and also far into the future (2011).
Any other comment on the technology used?