1 Hit the Road

Interactive Journey Planning

The what

Hit the Road is a public transport journey-planning service, which you can use to find directions in and around Dublin. Hit the Road was launched in May 2010, and currently supports Dublin Bus, Luas and DART services, with further services on the way.

The how

To use Hit the Road, users can either type in an address to search for, or drag and drop the location markers to create a search. Once a search is created, these two locations are sent to the Hit the Road routing service, which cross-references them against a collection of Dublin Bus, Luas and Dart services to find routes that pass close-by, and thus generate a useful solution.

The who

Screenshot of Hit the Road

Hit the Road is developed by Fintan Fairmichael, Ross Shannon, Eugene Kenny, Eoin Bailey and Stephen McBride, and is based on their Commutable technology platform. Hit the Road participated in and received investment through NDRC’s LaunchPad Programme in 2011.

Why does it matter

Not only does Hit the Road provide an incredibly useful and uncommon way to plan journeys, it also gives users an idea of the CO2 emissions savings incurred by the public transport option through their carbon management partner ManageCO2. Calculations are estimates of course, but it gives insight into the potential savings and encourages a more environmentally-friendly option.

Also interesting is that Hit the Road is now supporting train and coach directions outside of Dublin with the help of GetThere.ie, an independent initiative which provides rail, private and public bus as well as carsharing information.

2 Buildingeye

Nosey Neighbours Digitised

The what

Buildingeye visualises on one map planning and building permit data from different cities and different countries, so anyone can see what new projects are being planned in their area right now.

Screenshot of Buildingeye

The why

To find out what projects are being planned in a given location you need to know which local authority relates to that area, then you need to trawl through the site to find exactly what your looking for. This is where Buildingeye comes in: they bypass the Local Authority websites and put all their data on one map with a simple search facility. It doesn’t matter whether users are looking for a project in Dublin, Manchester or Seattle, they can simply choose the country and city and the information there to be seen, with a link directly to the any associated documents. Buildingeye's subscription service allows companies who are looking for new business leads to find these easily. Companies can put in a keyword, for example “retail” or “extension” and Buildingeye will filter the map down to identify these applications in the chosen area.

The who

Ciaran Gilsenan is CEO and Founder, and his background is in Engineering and Planning. He has been involved in this space for the last 12 years. Phil McNamara heads up business development in the states, he is based in San Francisco and busy meeting with Local Authorities and Investors over there. Additionally, there are two more developers as well as a graphic designer on the team. Buildingeye is currently looking at building out a sales team.

The proof

Buildingeye was accepted onto the NDRC’s Launchpad program which has just finished. They were awarded a top two position on a final pitch competition, winning 20,000 euro investment and 4,000 euro of legal and accountancy services. Following that Buildingeye was selected as Silicon Republic's Startup of the week. Through our original site http://www.mypp.ie which focused on Irish data we won an Enterprise Award from Fingal County Council, we featured in the Irish Times on open data alongside Dublin City Council, and we were recognized in the top 40 open data companies in Europe at the ePSI government conference on open data which we attended in Rotterdam earlier this year.

3 GetBulb

GetBulb is a web-based data visuals generator transforming dry data into eye-catching, memorable graphics simply and quickly.

The what

Telling a story with data is hard. It's especially hard if you want distinctive graphics that update when your data changes. GetBulb makes it easy for everyone to create custom, data-driven graphics for both print and online.

Screenshot of GetBulb visualisation

The why

We make creating compelling data visualisations absurdly easy - as easy as creating a bar chart in a spreadsheet. If you've an interesting set of data that has a great story to tell, you have two main options: either use a spreadsheet to create the typical bar or pie charts everyone else uses, or commission a designer to create an interesting, but static, visualisation for you. You can get great results from the latter – until your data changes and you have to get him or her to create the graphic all over again. GetBulb gives you the creative freedom of graphic design software and the live updates of spreadsheets.

The who

Oliver Mooney founded GetBulb. He's a data scientist and data visualisation expert with over eight years of experience of working with data and communicating findings visually. Anton Shihoff is responsible for business development; he has extensive enterprise sales experience having worked for both HP and IBM, and is a serial entrepreneur. Dermot Tierney is a non-executive director who's worked in the technology transfer space with over 50 startups. Jonathan Callan, founder of Realer.me and heavily involved in Tweak.com’s user interface design, works on our visual identity. Ian Hunter is our development intern.

The proof

Our customers are so excited by our product that some have bought it - and paid for it! - before it's even available. We were one of the first ten companies to come through Startupbootcamp Dublin, picked from over 250 companies that applied from all over the globe. We’ve exhibited at the PriceWaterhouseCoopers awards and at the Dublin Web Summit’s Startup Zone.

GetBulb is delivering their first edition to our customers in June 2012.