SMS inquiry?


#1

This site is amazing! I’ve passed it on to all my pilot people and they love it!

How about something similar to Google or Yahoo SMS where we could SMS an N-number or flight number and get a brief reply with position info (alt, speed, etc) along with dep time and ETA?


#2

Hi, Craig and welcome to FlightAware.

Absolutely – this is on the way. You can expect an announcement and for more information in the mobile devices section in the coming weeks. The initial roll-out will be e-mail only although most modern cell phones can send e-mail in addition to SMS, which we’ll work on supporting.


#3

How are things progressing with this feature?


#4

Bump


#5


#6

Maybe you should assume that they’ll let you know when they know. FA staff has caught some heat lately from users who are impatient for one feature or another. I would guess that they are redirecting time to work on the features rather than keep responding to “when’s xxx feature coming?” I don’t know their develoment priorities, but I’m guessing backend development is first, web user interface is lower, and SMS interface is somewhere way behind that.

FA is already the best! Give 'em a little more time to do the stuff everyone is dreaming of!


#7

Fair enough- I agree- I think FlightAware is an excellent site and they do a great job. I thought it would be nice to have a follow-up since the last time this issue was addressed was NOVEMBER 09 2005, when dbaker said to “expect an announcement and for more information in the mobile devices section in the coming weeks.” I was just looking for a quick follow-up… by one of the board administrators.


#8

A year is just 52 coming weeks :slight_smile:
I suspect they are overwhelmed with their very rapid growth… And I say that with all respect and awe. Just from watching all the stuff they HAVE been releasing, it’s amazing! I used to work for a software company and with 38 programmers they weren’t able to do near as much as FA has, and I suspect they have a lot fewer people to do it with.

I wonder how many programmers FA does have? Maybe dbaker or mduell might find the time to give a little insight to the company: company history, how big, where do/will you earn revenue (are Google ads enough?), etc.


#9

I wonder how many programmers FA does have? Maybe dbaker or mduell might find the time to give a little insight to the company: company history, how big, where do/will you earn revenue (are Google ads enough?), etc.

That’s a great thought. I know that many of us would love to know.

However, there are many flight tracking sites on the internet. Some are free and others charge a subscription fee. All are “the competition”. I’d hate to tell the world that FA does it all with just three programmers and then have a tracking site with more cash steal two of those guys away to program what FA already has into their site. It just wouldn’t be ‘friendly’.


#10

You have a good point there. But then, I doubt that the FA folks are even “steal-able”, at least the principles. It’s pretty obvious that they aren’t there punching a clock, they are dedicated to a labor of love and it shows. I’m sure the competition already knows about them, anyway.

So maybe you guys will give us your story? (HINT!) At least to the point of not giving away competitive secrets. I know that many of us would like to hear(read) it.


#11

I thought it would be nice to have a follow-up since the last time this issue was addressed was NOVEMBER 09 2005

If you were paying for it, then I could see your impatience. You are not paying for this service so please ask the question and then WAIT for the answer. Please don’t waste time and bandwidth asking for a reply. Thank you.


#12

Both jlorber and damiross have good points here. If you have a request that is on the top of your wish list and have seen nothing beyond an acknowledgement in the past three months, it’s normal to become impatient. You can wonder if you’ve been forgotten. We don’t want to see it fall through the cracks and we’re culturally acclimatized to believe that the squeaking wheel will get some grease. So we do have a tendency to write “reminders”.

Yet damiross is correct also. We don’t pay for this service and some of us use this freebie extensively for business or just plain pleasure/curiosity/nosiness. We haven’t paid for the right to nag. Once the FA staff has responded that an enhancement is in the pipeline, patience is truly the appropriate virtue.

Personally, I’ve been waiting seemingly forever for map zooming and recentering. Deep down, I’m impatient too. But we see a frequent stream of enhancements. Today’s introduction of the plane icon on maps is just one example. Much work is going on behind the scenes that’s not visible to us, such as adding servers to track more data and accommodate more users. I hate online “busy signals”. With FlightAware we almost never see them, thanks to the hard work of staff.

The bottom line here is that we users don’t control the programming priorities. If we did and always moved visible enhancements to the top, the site would probably be a discouraging mess, with longer wait times and less information. There was little said by users about creating “divert” as an arrival status, yet it is one of the most valuable improvements of recent weeks. As long as I can see steady improvements in the site, I can handle my own impatience. I think we end up with a better product when we let the FA staff set the priorities. The upgrading they’ve done so far has earned my trust and respect.

Thanks to all of the FA staff!