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Old Apr 2, 11, 7:49 pm   #1
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
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MileageBrain beta 3

Hello again everybody! Thanks so much for all the interest and support in our ongoing development efforts of MileageBrain.com. Things have been quiet for a while, and the old thread was getting quite long, so it's time for a fresh start!

If you have no idea what I'm talking about, please try out the mileage run finder over at www.mileagebrain.com. The goal is to offer a useful, competitive mileage run finding tool by the time mileage run season picks up at the end of 2011.

Some bad news: we’ve had to temporarily disable all other airports except the top 25 most searched (SFO, JFK, EWR, LAX, IAD, LGA, ORD, DCA, BOS, SEA, BWI, YYZ, ATL, PHL, SJC, LHR, FRA, IAH, DEN, OAK, MIA, YVR, MUC, YOW, YUL). We’re really sorry to not be able to offer everything like we used to, but we’ve had to take this path to both save money and better concentrate on developing user experience and more. We want to be able to sustainably roll features out for all the other airports and we’re hoping to slowly trickle out more airports as we get more efficient with our resources.

That said, we're planning to let users “Adopt an Airport” soon by donating a certain amount to have an airport of their choice fully crawled by our Brain and featured on the site. If you've already donated, don't worry, we'll be in touch - you get first pick

And now for a few pieces of good news. These are our official "Beta 3" features:

- Mileage calculation is now extremely accurate for most itineraries. You can even see the exact routing that the calculation was based on by clicking "Details"

- The fares you see should be fresh and hot - no more than 24 hours old and definitely still bookable.

- American Airlines is back in the system! They got away from us for a little while because they are pulling out of the online travel ecosystem in general, but we caught up with them and now you should see their fares along with all the other oneworld results.

- In addition to this FT thread, our twitter, the "contact" form on the website, and email to info AT mileagebrain.com, we now have a MileageBrain area in the ConcourseZ section of milepoint.com. Just another way to get in touch with the team and share your experiences and feedback.

Looking forward into the future, our top priority is to get fresh, accurate data into the system for a larger number of airports, but we are also thinking more seriously about the best way to access MileageBrain from mobile devices and about how we can improve our search to make it more useful for everyone.

Development is guided entirely by your feedback (well, and the constraints of physical reality ) so please keep it coming! Thanks again everyone who has tried it out so far.
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Old Apr 2, 11, 11:48 pm   #2
 
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This is a great idea! I know Ill be using this once Q4 comes around. I just tested this from SFO flying UA/CO and it seemed to be pretty accurate. I love how clicking on details gave me an option to book and brought me straight to the Expedia page with the exact itinerary and price mentioned.

Any chance you'd be developing an iPhone app to go with the website?
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Old Apr 3, 11, 12:16 am   #3
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lrluis View Post
Any chance you'd be developing an iPhone app to go with the website?
Thanks for trying out the site! We're looking into iPhone, iPad, and Blackberry at the moment as those seem to be the go-to devices most of our users prefer.
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Old Apr 3, 11, 6:35 am   #4
 
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Seems Montreal (YUL) is no longer available!

Some of the airports you selected (YUL) are not available on MileageBrain during this phase of our beta testing.

Resources are limited, so while we wish we could track mileage runs from every airport in the world, the reality is that we have to expand slowly.
Please follow us on twitter as we'll be sure to announce when we're adding more airports, and be sure to contact us if you'd like to suggest an airport for us to focus on next.
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Old Apr 3, 11, 11:20 am   #5
 
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Dang, the idea that I discussed in this post already exists here!

Keep up the good work!
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Old Apr 3, 11, 11:55 am   #6
 
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Originally Posted by firewire0 View Post
Dang, the idea that I discussed in this post already exists here!

Keep up the good work!
Thanks!

Unfortunately the < 4cpm stuff is super hard to find and requires advanced multi-city Kung Fu, which the MileageBrain just doesn't have the attention span for at the moment. Someday I'll teach it Especially with oil prices always climbing, 4cpm is going to keep getting rarer...

That said it does seem to reliably find a good selection of < 6cpm stuff for most major airports, which is encouraging.
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Old Apr 3, 11, 12:10 pm   #7
 
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I'm extremely jealous that you were able to implement this before me! lol. I must say that I am very impressed how simple and easy it is to search and get results.

With that said, I do have pretty good understanding of how you are gathering the data and the resources that are required. If I can ask .. Is this just a one or two man show now working as a side gig? Do you have a dedicated staff working on this?

Obviously the growth opportunity of a system like this is insane and the possibilities are endless. I'm honestly looking forward to see what you have coming down the pipeline!
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Old Apr 3, 11, 3:19 pm   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmolony View Post
Seems Montreal (YUL) is no longer available!
Oops! Right you are. Silly me, my computer-addled brain starts counting from 0 instead of 1, so I turned on airports 0-24 and then midoriw (who writes entries for the MileageBrain blog among other things, and is decidedly less computer-addled) posted a list of airports 1-25. YUL was #25 (so technically the 26th airport).

Anyway, long story short I done goofed. I've re-enabeld YUL but it will take about 24 hours for fresh information from YUL to trickle back into the system. Good catch!
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Old Apr 4, 11, 11:24 am   #9
 
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We're probably not a top-25 airport, but would love to SAN put back in.

The only domestic $0.04cpm that I am seeing currently is SAN-PIT though SAN-MKE isn't far behind with creative routings...
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Old Apr 4, 11, 11:35 am   #10
 
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I think this is a fantastic tool. Two comments:

1) Necessity for date feature is important
2) Doesnt seem to plot 2+ stopover routings

Keep up the good work.
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Old Apr 4, 11, 1:47 pm   #11
 
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Originally Posted by tfong007 View Post
1) Necessity for date feature is important
Thanks for checking it out! Could you clarify - are you looking to restrict your search to a particular range of dates?
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Old Apr 5, 11, 11:33 am   #12
 
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great idea, keep working

Yes, the date function is pretty important for those of us who have limited time frames to do MR's.

I just checked BWI, PHL, SEA, DCA and got no hits for <5c/mi and really not any under 7c/mi.


Sorry for asking this (OT) but what happened to Dream Maps? Pretty unintelligible to me now and I really have no idea where I want to go---just that I only have a few dates. Is there any alternative?
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Old Apr 5, 11, 5:27 pm   #13
 
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I thought for sure DFW would be a top 25 Airport no?
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Old Apr 5, 11, 8:15 pm   #14
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First off I want to say the time and effort invested into this project is a great deal of work and thoughtful at most.

But I'm curious if anyone has found anything recently for under 5cpm?

I believe I'm stretching it far to do MR's as I've added 8 airports that I'm willing to fly out of but can't seem to get any search results

The only thing I've come across was the recent JFK/BOS-LHR.

Could others please post their results even if it is from airports not listed, thanks.

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Old Apr 5, 11, 9:17 pm   #15
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krpjr View Post
But I'm curious if anyone has found anything recently for under 5cpm?
The Brain is only four months old at this point and is not yet as good at finding mileage runs as humans are . In time we will refine it to the point where it can find more of the sub-5cpm stuff, but for now I'd say it's more useful for finding trips in the 5-10cpm range. Not necessarily great "pure" mileage runs, but rather suggestions for fun two- or three-day trips you could take that happen to have quite good cost per mile.

As always, thank you so much for all of your feedback, interest, and support!
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