9 of the Best Web Mashups That Once Ruled Online

These web mashups were all the rage before smartphone apps

A vector image of a web browser.

Photo © filo / Getty Images

Just a few years ago, web mashups began skyrocketing in popularity. Since the rise of the mobile era however, applications that combine various sources of information have become much more accessible and mainstream.

A mashup's ability to take information from different areas of the web such as Google Maps and Twitter and combine that information into a small application could create some unique, useful and downright entertaining results. The best mashups were both visually appealing and either useful or at least entertaining to the point of needing to come with a warning label not to view at work if you want to get anything done.

Check out the following list for a look back on some of the best web mashups that really catered to people's needs at the time.

01
of 09

WeatherBonk: Where Weather and Traffic Conditions Came Together

Weatherbonk Mashup
Image of Weatherbonk.

If you have ever wanted to be a weather forecaster or traffic reporter, Weatherbonk was the web mashup for you back when official weather mobile apps weren't around yet.

Combining Google Maps data with multiple weather resources including WeatherBug and the National Weather Service, WeatherBonk was the best mashup for pretending to be a forecaster. It also offered traffic details so you could plot out a trip with weather information included.

 

02
of 09

HousingMaps: Where You Could Find a New Home With Google Maps

Best Mashup - HousingMaps
Image of HousingMaps.

A great mashup for anyone in the market for a new home, HousingMaps took information from Craigslist and combined it with Google Maps to create a helpful tool for finding a house for sale or one for rent.

The sheer usefulness of this site made it one of the best mashups on the web and helped popularized the idea of searching for real estate on a map.

03
of 09

FindNearby: Where You Could Find Items in Your Local Area

Best Mashup - Findnearby
Image of Findnearby.

For those who grew increasingly frustrated with trying to hunt down a hard-to-find item in your city or region, FindNearby was a great tool to take advantage of.

Before there were so many local online marketplaces, FindNearby was the best mashup for locating items near your location.

 

04
of 09

Mapdango: Where You Could Learn More About a Place

Mapdango
Image of Mapdango.

By combining Google Maps with information from several useful websites like Flickr and Wikipedia, Mapdango was the best mashup for finding out more about a specific location.

Information included current events and weather, making it a perfect tool for planning a day trip or long vacation to particular place of choice.

05
of 09

Popurls: Where You Could Get Your Daily Dose of News

Popurls Mashup
Image of Popurls.

Popurls is one of the few original web mashups that's still up and running today. Described now as "the mother of news aggregators," Popurls started out as the best mashup for keeping a handle on all things in the world of social news.

It displayed the latest and greatest from sites like Digg and Reddit as well as images from Flickr, YouTube videos, and much more. This made it the best mashup for finding out what was currently hot on the web.

06
of 09

Twittervision: Where You Could See Tweets According to Location

Twittervision Best Mashup
Image of Twittervision.

Twittervision was a really cool mashup that allowed you to see tweets across a world map in real time.

You could even switch to 3D mode to see tweet coming from a revolving Earth as seen from space.

07
of 09

Flappr: Where You Could Browse Better Flickr Photos

Flappr Mashup
Image of Flappr.

Flappr was a mashup for Flickr fans who wanted to find a better way of browsing through photos and discovering ones that they liked.

Flappr used Flash to provide a slick interface to Flickr and a visual method of finding really great photos. At the time, it was the best mashup for browsing Flickr's enormous photo library.

08
of 09

Yahoo Newsglobe: Where You Could Get WorldWide News

NewsGlobe
Image of NewsGlobe.

Newsglobe was the best mashup for getting your news in an entertaining way.

It plotted real-time news stories on a globe of the earth using Yahoo's top stories RSS feed and hooking it into Yahoo Maps to create an excellent visual tool for keeping up on what's going on in the world.

09
of 09

Twitter Answers: Where You Could Ask the Twitterverse Your Questions

TwitterAnswers
Image of TwitterAnswers.

Twitter Answers was a unique mashup that allowed you to tap into the power of the world's most popular microblogging and chatting service at the time, Twitter, to get quick answers to questions with this great mashup.

Article updated by: Elise Moreau