Flightfox – real people compete to find you the best flights

Flightfox – real people compete to find you the best flights

They are travel agents, airline personnel, or frequent flyers, and all of them are obsessed with finding the best flights.

They understand airline pricing, rules, routing, and frequent flyer programs. They’re also real people, so you can ask them anything.

I think this is a brilliant idea and excellent crowd-sourcing example.

What are they thinking?

Cyprus Mail reports that Cyprus Airways expands its operations in Greece:

“After the positive response from the Athens-Thessalonica-Athens route, the airline decided to start new regular flights to the country’s most important airports,” CY announced yesterday.

Starting on October 28, there will be twice-daily flights between Athens and Heraklion, one from Athens to Rhodes and back; one a day between Heraklion and Thessalonica and another between Rhodes and Thessalonica three times a week.

My first reaction after reading this is – what are they thinking?  Cyprus Airways has been in a lot of financial troubles lately, getting lots of help from the Cyprus government, including the kick out of the competition – Ryanair (here and here).  But at least Ryanair was working with Cyprus, bringing lots of people in and out.  What does Cyprus Airways do?  Yeah, right, instead of trying to help the Cyprus tourism a bit, they go to Greece.  Which, given Greece’s troubles, is questionable as well.  What’s the point of having Cyprus Airways in Cyprus at all then?  And why does the government spend the money on them.  Let them go to the other side of the world, if they want to, and help Australia’s tourism, or something…

All your base are belong to … USA

Slashdot reports:

The European Parliament has approved the controversial data transfer agreement, the bilateral PNR (passenger name register), with the US which requires European airlines to pass on passenger information, including name, contact details, payment data, itinerary, email and phone numbers to the Department of Homeland Security. Under the new agreement, PNR data will be ‘depersonalized’ after six months and would be moved into a ‘dormant database’ after five years. However the information would still be held for a further 15 years before being fully ‘anonymized.’

I’m so glad that I managed to visit the USA before it became a paranoid concentration camp.  The way things go, I don’t think I’ll live long enough to visit it again, without being worried for an arrest and endless detention.

P.S.: And some people still talk about privacy.  What privacy?

24 hours of air traffic in a minutes

Here is a mesmerizing video that I picked up at Pestaola.gr – 24 hours of worldwide air traffic compressed into a minute or so video.  Look at the density of that!  Consider the complexity of the underlying technology.  Consider how many people are affected but all of that.  And that’s not even all worldwide traffic, since some of it escapes the technology used for this research.