40+ Most Useful Mashups for College Students

Posted on 05.28.2008

 College students are practically glued to their cell phones and BlackBerries, iPods, mp3 players, and absolutely any device that has an Internet connection. But despite all the resources out there to help college kids study more efficiently, connect with friends, and access music and other entertainment tools, getting bogged down in the junk and wasting time is inevitable. To help our college buddies keep better track of their time -- even when they're procrastinating -- we've found over 40 different mashups that combine the best features from favorite tools like Google Maps, Twitter, Wikipedia, YouTube and more, making it possible to multitask and access tons of information on one site.

The Toolset

Keep these ten tools close: they're vital to your survival on campus and off.

  1. Google Maps: Whether you're trying to spy on your neighbors or desperately trying to find directions around your new college town, Google Maps is everyone's best friend.
  2. TrainCheck: This tool is a must for students living in major cities or studying abroad. If you have SMS or e-mail on your cell phone, you can get the next three train times at any stop sent to you "within moments" of requesting them.
  3. BlogWorth: This mashup figures out the worth of your blog "using the same link to dollar ratio as the AOL-Weblogs Inc deal," according to MashupAwards.com. Obviously this tool only appeals to the type of person who's into the make-money-online scene, online savings accounts, etc.
  4. HousingMaps: HousingMaps combines Google Maps with Craigslist so you get a visual idea of exactly where each listed property is.
  5. Gruvr: Enter your city into Gruvr, and you'll find out about all the different concerts in your area happening soon. The concert schedule is displayed on a Google map, making it easy for you to determine if it's close enough to campus to duck out during a study break.
  6. WipBox: When you're trying to sell your old textbooks or find apartment furniture on the cheap, searching Craigslist and eBay separately gets annoying. This tool lets you upload and research both sites at the same time from your cell phone.
  7. Wiki FM: If you're the kind of student that likes to listen to music when you research a paper, you probably already know about the social music site Last.fm. Wiki FM displays the band and artist information for songs you listen to on Last.fm when you log on with your user information.
  8. Lunchbox: Lunchbox helps you "find good food" in your area so that you can break out of the cafeteria and your pizza-three-times-daily mold.
  9. lispic: Search Craiglist by scrolling through photos of each listed item with listpic.
  10. Mapdango: Mapdango combines Gruvr, Wikipedia, WeatherBug, Flickr and Eventful into one search that gives you tons of information about any zip code or city. You can use it to explore your college town or find out more about your new city abroad.

Social Media Mashups

Get control of your social media accounts with these fun mashups. You'll be freer to meet more people, start more online discussions, and update your friends with absolutely everything you've been doing online.

  1. Flitter: This site hosts information from del.icio.us, Feedster, Filckr, Amazon, Audioscrobbler, and Blogdigger.
  2. 50 Matches: Get more out of your Internet searches by only searching sites that have been ranked and voted for on social media sites like del.icio.us and Digg.
  3. The Daily Mashup: Unlike sites like Digg, The Dail Mashup also ranks popular photos next to popular links and popular news.
  4. Momenty: Connect with old friends and meet new ones by posting memories based on location. You can also reach out to others to set up a meeting, find out more about a past event or share sentiments about a certain spot in your city.
  5. twistori: Twistori is great if you want to commiserate, rejoice, dream or brood with strangers. The site lets you read real life Twitter updates based on the phrases I love/I hate/I think/I believe/I feel and I wish.
  6. Lifestream.fm: This site makes AIM away messages seem so old-fashioned. Lifestream.fm shows your friends what you've just bookmarked on social media sites, which new photos you uploaded, what games you played online and even what your new Facebook status says, and when you changed it.

Study Help

Mashups are great study aids too. From bilingual search engines to library searches with books under 200 pages, bookmark these tools to give each of your assignments a real boost.

  1. Babelplex: This mashup is especially useful if you're trying to find text in the original language or need sources for a foreign language class assignment but are having trouble finding results based on your elementary translations. Babelplex lets you search two languages at once, based on your English keywords.
  2. Flickr Wrappr: Looking for the perfect photo for your presentation or graph is difficult, even when you're searching online. The Flickr Wrappr mashup makes it easier by bringing together tags from Flickr and Wikipedia with geographic locations.
  3. Twitter Answers: If you need a quick answer to study question or need a little affirmation before a big presentation, use Twitter Answers, powered by Mosio, to reach out to people around the world.
  4. Stock Cloud: Stock Cloud is a great reference site for finance majors and advertising or PR students. The site tracks press releases and stock tickers to discover more about a company's successes and failures.
  5. Politweets: Stay ahead in the 2008 presidential race by getting news updates and participating in discussions with other Twitter users.
  6. Quick.as: Search a specific site from this page by typing in a one- or two-letter code as a prefix to your keywords search.
  7. bkkeepr: If you don't already have one, open up a Twitter account so you can use this mashup to keep track of your reading. Enter the ISBN and specific edition for the book you're reading, and bkkeepr will help you keep track of the page you're on, remember which books you've got to read when and bookmark certain passages.
  8. lazylibrary: The motto of lazylibrary is practically marketed just for college students: "read less. Get more." This mashup filters out books with page counts of over 200 pages, so you can find cheaper books, get quick reference guides and more.
  9. Campus Explorer: Campus Explorer is a great mashup for high school students, students looking to transfer, and even individuals thinking about going back to school. You can search schools by location or major, view photos and video clips of different schools, and set up your own profile to save your favorite schools.

Procrastination

Studying and doing research on the Internet leaves you vulnerable to temptations like online gaming, music downloads and vacation planning. Treat yourself to a little break and use these super fun mashups to plan an imaginary surf trip, discover cool things to do in your city, learn about upcoming concerts and more.

  1. Musiclovr: This user-driven site lets you shop for mp3s, find information and photos of different artists, download ringtones and read blog posts about music and the industry.
  2. Webmunism: Have fun searching video sites like YouTube and Metacafe in one step with this meta search engine.
  3. How's The Surf: If you live in a beach town or just want to dream about spending your days surfing, look up the surf and ocean kayaking conditions in Australia, Africa, South America, the Indian Ocean, Indonesia and more.
  4. Spot Story: Learn more about your town or get ready for a trip abroad by reading real-life stories from spots around the world. Sign up to contribute your own stories too.
  5. Flickr Fight: This ultimate time waster is a lot of fun when you make celebrities or keywords "fight" by competing to find out who has more pictures on Flickr.
  6. TripTouch: Take a break from studying to plan a real or imaginary trip using the tools provided here. You can research climate information, plan activities, look up sporting or music events, upload or browse photos, view a city map, check out local restaurants and more.
  7. Map World of Warcraft: This popular game includes Google Maps features to let you display resources like gold, herbs and ore in mapped locations.