Imagine if you could peek into your users' checking accounts and see what they earn. In a way, you can. A creative new API from big data trailblazer InfoChimps uses IP geolocation to return U.S. Census data, including annual income. There are also updates to the company's Twitter influence and trust data APIs.
The new API is also a mashup-of-sorts. It uses the MaxMind IP geolocation API to find a user's zip code. Then it looks up the data from the Census Bureau. Since a census is only performed every ten years, the data is from 2000, which makes it only useful as relative values. Nevertheless, the IP→Census API is a unique idea with real applications.
From the InfoChimps blog:
- Target content/ads based on IP address
- A/B test your website/web app based on demographic data
- Build an app/plugin/etc to analyze web server logs that gives demographic information about a website's users
During the beta period, the IP→Census API is free for the first 100,000 calls. When the API leaves beta, it will cost $3 per 1,000 calls.
Among the Twitter updates is an addition to to the PageRank for Twitter API called "Trst quotient," which helps for filtering spammers. A new Strong Links API shows the top users a Twitter account communicates with.