TravelOrMove.com is a fun travel Web site that connects people to an ideal community to which they can move or just visit and have a great time.
How did you get started?
Back in 2008, we heard a lot of Americans talking about how they might have to move to another country if one candidate or the other won the presidential election. An idea blossomed. What, we wondered, if we could build a neat Web site that allowed users to pick criteria that defined their ideal community based on things like the area’s economy, political climate, weather, culture and the like. Then, we thought, wouldn’t it be great if we could match at ideal community to real communities that were the best fit for the ideal profile?
So we’re building that algorithmic engine based on lots of data points. While the full, cool version of the site won’t premier until October 1, we thought you’d enjoy looking now at profiles from more than 100 communities that currently are in our database. Over the next months, we’ll add more. (What communities should we add?)
For now, enjoy the site. Share it with your friends. And let us know what you think.
What else does the site offer?
Click around the site and here’s what you’ll find:
Fun facts. Each community profiled in TravelOrMove has a bunch of information. What you really might enjoy are the Fun Facts. For example, did you know:
- Mother Goose. There really was a Mother Goose who told nursery rhymes to the 34 children she raised -- 10 of her own; 10 of her second husband; 14 of one of her daughters. See Boston.
- Coathanger. This town has a bridge nicknamed “The Coathanger” because of its arch-based design. See Sydney.
- 175,000 square feet. This town has the largest privately-owned home in the United States. It features more than 750 rooms. Imagine the cleaning bill. See Asheville, N.C..
- Swimsuit issue. You probably wouldn’t think of a swimsuit issue of Sports Illustrated being shot in this town. See Apalachicola, Florida.
- Jaws of Hell. This coastal enclave features an inlet called “Boca do Inferno” with steep rocks and caves. See Cascais, Portugal.
Blog/newsletter. We encourage you to subscribe to our blog, Super Cool Places. It will offer frequent updates to the Super Cool cities that we profile throughout the site. Think if this blog as an ongoing newsletter of neat stuff happening in some of the best communities throughout the world.
Twitter. If you find out something neat going on in one of our communities, share it on Twitter by posting to #TOM and the city’s name. For example, #TOMCharleston posts information to our page for Charleston, South Carolina. #TOMBoston might go where? (NOTE: There are a couple of special exceptions to this general hashtag rule; check the page for the community before you post to Twitter to make sure. For example, Oxford in England (#TOMOxfordEn) is a little different from Oxford, Mississippi (#TomOxfordMi).
Community specific advertising. If you’re interested in advertising on our site, click here.
So how did you pick the communities on your site?
Out of a hat.
Seriously, our investors range from Australia to America. We’ve traveled a lot, as have our friends. We talked with a lot of people and did a bunch of research of highly-ranked small and large communities. In the end, we offered about 100 communities to get us off the ground.
How can my community become a part of the ToM network?
Let us know about your community and make your case. We’re not going to offer every community on the site -- only the ones that are pretty neat. We’ll be the judge -- but persuade us why your town needs to become a part of the ToM network.
What’s all of this data you’re talking about?
We went to trusted sources to gather information about each community. Some examples:
- Weather. We consulted the weather classification on the Koppen scale to classify different communities based on their climate. Wikipedia generally outlines the ranking for each community.
- Political leanings. We surveyed an international association of political consultants to develop a general ranking of communities as whether they are conservative, leaning conservative, moderate, leaning liberal or liberal.
- Economic rankings. We developed a ranking system that incorporated various standard of living indicators to help break down communities into rankings of $ (Things are pretty cheap) to $$$ (Prices seem moderate) to $$$$$ (Wow, it’s expensive). These are general categories, but backed up by data.
- Other. For other indicators -- culture, health, infrastructure, recreation -- we indexed a list of qualities that communities had or didn’t have to develop a ranking on that indicator.
So what’s your algorithm?
Well, that would be telling, wouldn’t it?
How we generate the communities suggested to be closest to your ideal community is based on an algorithmic interpretation of our data points. And that’s proprietary.