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Published on Jan 8, 2013
Nowadays, spontaneous trips in popular European cities are made easy by the plethora of cheap means of transportation, visa relaxation policies and overall globalization. Because reaching the destination is quite easy, planning the activities there should be equally easy, but current online solutions do not cover this search space too well. On the one hand, travelers can find generic landmarks by checking Wikipedia, Lonely Planet or via Google. These generic landmarks do not include any user preference and do not allow easy discovery of new landmarks. Additionally, once the user made up his mind about the activities to pursue, it is very difficult to obtain a map with the optimal route to visit the wanted locations. TripEneer is a prototype trying to solve the problems above. Focused on London and Rome, TripEneer gathered the landmarks available from Lonely Plant and FourSquare with their respective rankings. TripEneer proposes five ways of ranking landmarks. Lonely Planet provided ranks are modeled using a power law distribution and a weighted average is computed with the rating provided from foursquare. Another ranking order is based on foursquare signals: the sum of checkins, tips and number of active users. In addition to this collaborative approach, we rank landmarks by their proximity to locations visited by a user's Facebook friends. The Facebook profile information is used to compute a similarity value with each landmark and propose a fourth ranking solution. The last approach combines all the above using a weighted average.