1. I don't see a way to change my location. Without that, the tool is essentially useless to anyone but you.
2. It's not obvious what the colors or sizes of the dots represent.
3. Have you considered superimposing Kelly Blue Book info? That could add some interesting trend lines.
4. A blog post analyzing how well different brands retain their value could be a great way to drive traffic. I imagine their might actually be some money in adwords around used cars.
Horizontal scale = mileage.
Vertical scale = price.
The size of a dot = year (newer = larger), plus I colored 2007 .. 2011 in different colors to find "fresh" cars quicker.
This is just some sample data from the last 24 hours, relatively cheap cars under $32,000 within 500 mile radius of NYC.
Also, a legend that explains dot size and color would be super easy to implement and tremendously helpful.
I had the same comment - adding a key with this info would be really useful (especially if you could also use it as a filter).
It would also be great if you could draw a line across the graph (optionally applying a curve) to allow the results to be filtered and the section beneath the curve zoomed in on (potentially two curves if you want to cut out anything suspiciously low priced also). You could also allow this selected section to then be displayed on different axes; i.e. these are the cars with a mileage and price I'm happy with, now plot my selection as price against age.
Further user customisation would also be good - e.g. allowing users to change the meaning of the colours (colors) / dot size.
Nice work though - much better way to represent & search this data than the standard fixed range filters. I'd love to see something like this done for computers; when custom building & selecting processors for example, rather than getting a load of codes, plot serial task performance against price, filter it down, plot parallel task against price & further reduce the data set until you find the ones which meet your requirement.
Craigslist has a ton of car postings, but it's not structured in any way, will be very hard to parse.
I'd change the default setting from showing all brands to 2-3 at most. Simple sliders to narrow down the price and mileage range would improve the usability a lot. Plus, if you're presenting any information as shape, colour or size, you need to show a key which explains what it means.
You've done remarkably well to put this up in a weekend. I need to pull my socks up and release my v1 asap.
Your app made it easy enough to find an exception like this.
It's a weekend project, but even weekend projects evolve with free time.
I agree that the standard "pick a make and model and hope for the best" kind of search is in dire need of an update, but I don't have the UX design experience or even the creativity to invent a new way of doing it, but what I do know, is what currently works, and what doesn't.
Instant feedback on the search as you are performing it is cool, and I've recently worked on a system that feeds back to the user the amount of cars that are going to be returned by their selected criteria as they select them, and it works pretty well and looks great, degrades nicely and allows someone to make a quick judgement about how broad or narrow their search is on the fly.
I'd like to see a new way to search for used cars that merges this level of visual detail with the standard selection criteria based way of searching, and hopefully something great can grow out of that, but until then, mixing up the interface like this will just confuse people.
Apart from my qualms, I do think this is pretty excellent and daring, but not really practical at the current time.
The user interaction will be confusing to many. Legends, instructions, and a general UI cleanup will help lots. Another thing to consider is adding more search parameters (year, model, price range, body style, location, source, etc.). I'm sure you've already got all of this in the development pipeline.
If you gave this a little polish and its own memorable domain name, I would almost certainly use this tool to research my next car. Also, car buyers are a significant demographic to car manufacturers. I could see this being a valuable resources for buyers and sellers (of new cars) alike.
I agree that it is kinda strange at first but once I realized it, it wasn't that bad.
EDIT: ok seems to be http://raphaeljs.com/
Would also be useful to change location.
Also to drill down by model / year. etc.
But for a week-end project, congrats.
Some court should declare that a headline is a real offer, and if someone calls to accept, then it's a binding contract.
Would be great if we can add another dimension or at least switch one of the axises to a different dataset - in particular, the year.
I now realize the colors are the year. This addresses my previous concern, but you need a legend for that.
Scratch that - Colors are not year. I don't know what's going on.. but colors as years would have been nice.
> The size of a dot = year (newer = larger), plus I colored 2007 .. 2011 in different colors to find "fresh" cars quicker.
Couple of thoughts:
The colors are a bit confusing. I understand the year, but a legend might help.
Would be cool to add search terms to limit models.
Would be nice to easily change location.
Other than that, really excellent idea and nice implementation!
There is only a tradeoff between inputs, the two primary ones shown here are mileage and price, with age overlaid by color/dot size.
2D data requires visualization and human interpretation - There is no algorithm in place here. A list only works on 1 dimensional data (and can be parsed trivially with a simple sort algorithm). 3D and higher dimension data requires more complex visualization and more effort to parse.
A visualization allowing the user to make good decisions based on several inputs is a great place to find 'the money'.
Sometimes an old car that's hardly ever driven, with a low mileage, isn't as good a bet as a newer car with lots of miles that's been well maintained.
It's cool, I would use it. I'd love to be able to set a range of mileage and price, filter by model names, location, etc. etc.
I really dig that you did here. I would only add that "Better" isn't always the cheapest option.
A front door of a site like this could have a screen cap, filter and then some quick-to-click pre-filters (Toyota SUVs made after 2005, or station wagons under $8k, etc).
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