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Markus on Development and Publishing

This is Markus Egger's professional blog, which covers topics such as development, publishing, and business in general. As the publisher of CoDe and CoDe Focus magazines, and as the President and Chief Software Architect of EPS Software Corp., Markus shares his insights and opinions on this blog.

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Saturday, April 07, 2007
Buying tickets the way it should be...

I have been looking into Ice Hockey Play-Off tickets, and in doing so, ran across a pretty darn cool user interface, provided by a company called Ballena Technologies. Basically, they show you the stadium in "pseudo 3D" and allow you to pick where you want your ticket, and then show you exactly what kind of view you get from there.

So for instance, if you wanted to buy a Dallas Stars ticket, you could see the stadium in a view like this:

Note that you can also see different views. Like when you would like to see the VIP suites, then it removes the upper sections and shows the "guts" of the stadium. Cool.

For a live version of this, click here.

Once you decide where you want to sit, it actually gives you a somewhat interactive view of what your view from that very seat is going to be like. For instance, I once already saw a Stars game, and my seat provided this view:

Live version here.

This is an awesome example for data visualization. Just showing you this sort of information in a table or even as a very simple graph (like TicketMaster does for instance) really isn't that great. But this allows you to see at once, whether you are going to like your ticket or not. Apparently, these guys do this for a number of different types of events (and as far as I care, I think this is the way it needs to be very every event). Wanna see what your view would be like if you got a seat in Daytona's Grandstand C? Here you go:

 

Yes, you can see the race cars, and yes, they are tiny. Maybe get sets further down...

Or how about concert tickets:

 

Looks like these guys created this based on a combination of Flash and Java. So I assume they must be pre-rendering a semi interactive view of the individual sections. With WPF, one could create a much better interactive experience with real 3D, rather than pre-rendered views. That would be cool too. Unfortunately, that would require full WPF (which I guess a lot of people will have anyway, sooner or later), because WPF/E currently does not support 3D, which is a real bummer, I think.



Posted @ 11:27 AM by Egger, Markus (markus@code-magazine.com) -
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