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On the way up we took a detour into darkest Leeds for Jane to buy a curious recorder/clarinet hybrid from Hobgoblin Music

It’s called a Clariphone and Jane is yet to master it’s finer points – like making any sort of noise at all.

We ate Vietnamese sandwiches for lunch (this is Leeds after all) in the largest covered market in all of Europe.

We were last in Leeds mumble years ago and it’s changed beyond recognition. Actually fairly nice now.


Not only have English Heritage put all their lovely locations on flook, they’ve now added all their fantabulous summer events! Just go to your friendly “featured flookers” robot and you’ll find them in the top spot. Hit the button to see lots of lovely purple cards like these…

Wow, is all we can say. It makes ordering pizza difficult.

Sorry, we seem to have lost our blogging mojo. Or were we counting all our flook cards? Because we just counted all the flook cards in London, and we ran out of fingers. That’s pretty amazing because we have 4,999 fingers. Yes, there are now over five thousand flook reviews of all the coolest spots in London, which is really something. Really something because these aren’t just check ins, something you can do with your left hand while your right hand is composing an opera and your brain is wondering how many hours it is until lunch. No, flook cards really ask something of our users – first finding a really cool place to share, then taking a great photo (some of our users have been known to edit their photos with cool apps like TiltShift and Plastic Camera), and adding a few pithy words.
Guys, we really appreciate the great content you’re making and this seems like a great time to thank you for it. And what better way than to showcase some of your best flooks. Over to you…

We’d like to announce something rather wonderful. We’ve struck a deal with English Heritage to get every single English Heritage property onto Flook. Sadly, there aren’t any old robots but they do know about a lot of nuclear bunkers which is almost as good.

In the future we hope to add more EH content including all the heritagetastic events they put on at their properties. Watch the skies!

Ooops, we’ve just become the victim of our own success.

As you probably know we’re partnering with Open House today. We naievely didn’t realise quite how much traffic the event could drive to flook. Downloads up 500%, traffic through the roof – we knew there were a lot of iPhones in London but this is amazing. It’s pushed us back into the top ten travel apps overnight.

Sadly, the server robots are getting a little hot under the collar keeping up with the huge spike. We’re working on it and adding unleaded four star back into their diet but in the meantime you might see some outages and for that we apologise.

Well, it’s been a while coming, but now if you logon to you will see you can make and edit cards online. That’s right, the web-monkeys have been busy and now it’s all yours to play with so you can make flooks even when you’re standing (or sitting) still. If you have really clever hands and one of those tiny PCs you could even do it on the move but we suggest the iPhone app for that.

There are a couple of nifty new features in there as well, we’ve done our best to make finding places as creamy smooth as possible, and you can also embed a webpage, or anything else on the interweb, right into the card back (it shows up under the details tab). This is super useful for showing, say, a restaurants menu that will update whenever they change it. You could also add stuff like booking forms or even build your own geo game if you too have the power of JavaScript. Whatever, go crazy and let us know what you think.

You’ll notice that if you post an event, you get a date picker to tell flook when it starts and ends, this is all part of our mission to help people find great things to do, so if you see an event that might be interesting to flookers, make an event card, up your score and make someone’s night. ‘Cos thats how things work in flookville. You post great stuff, people find it, I eat pizza…

Next up on the menu… We launched our card search page too.

Type an address and if you like, something specific you’re hunting for. Hit search and see all the flooks in that area. You can use the advanced search options to see flooks by specific people or category, you can limit your search to one geographical area, to cards you collected, by people you follow or made by people wearing false moustaches, even cards containing pictures of double rainbows and loads of other great stuff.

Finally, we made the monthly flook score page live to, worth checking frequently to see if you have a chance of winning that iPad.

Well, as we said earlier, we’re super chuffed to be the official iPhone partner for OpenHouse London 2010. We put all the Open house venues for the 2010 event live on flook today. You can find them on the website or even better, find them on the iPhone app.

Don’t forget, until the 15th, you can still win a chance to go up the BT Tower with flook.

When we launched flook, there was a little known feature – flook score. It’s a measure of how well you’re doing at flook. flook gives you points for doing cool stuff – generally making good cards. You don’t get points for making the cards, you get points when other people like those cards – when they collect them or better when they follow you.

Trouble was, flook score was an absolute all or nothing lifetime of the universe measure of flookness. That meant that people who’d been on flook for a long time got high scores and nobody else could get near them – except for TimeLords and they don’t use iPhones.

To even things up we’ve made flookscore monthly. Hallelujah! So, here we are:

and on the magic typing television:

On the phone, you get at it from the ever diligent score-bot on the lovely purple settings tab. On the web site score is displayed on the standard community page If you’re logged in it’ll show your score if you’re not, it’ll pester you to log in like a demented pestering thing.

Oh, as Big Steve would say; One more thing…

As I said many moons ago in front of several thousand people: “what do points mean? Points mean prizes!” to underline that fact, we’ve got a very real prize every month. Starting this month (actually yesterday) the top flooker at the end of the month will win an iPad. A real life transformational computing device from the mothership itself.

edit: I forgot to say that the competition is not open to AIC employees, AIC employees’ pets, AIC employees’ pets’ tennis partners, current contractors to AIC and @smiling-robot are not eligible to win the monthly prize.

Gosh, colour us proud and excited at the same time. Open House London has selected flook as its official mobile phone app for this year’s festival. If you don’t know, Open House is an architectural charity. As they say themselves:

The initiative is a simple but powerful concept: hundreds of great buildings of all types and periods open up their doors to all, completely for FREE. It is a truly city-wide celebration of the buildings, places and neighbourhoods where we live, work and play, and is your opportunity to get out and get under the skin of London’s amazing architecture.

Which feels to me like a very very good fit for flook and exactly the sort of thing we designed the app for in the first place.

There are just a few cards live right now – some of the key sites that you have to pre-book for. How visiting Boris’s pad or getting inside one of the largest construction projects in Europe. This is your only chance.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll be adding more of the Open house sites to flook and we have some extra special news about the BT Tower

We’re pleased to welcome the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust to flook. In their own words:

Founded in 1946 by the naturalist and artist, the late Sir Peter Scott, WWT is the only UK charity with a national network of nine specialist wetland visitor centres. With over 60 years experience of wetland conservation, WWT is committed to the protection of wetlands and all that depend on them for survival.

What’s not to like about that. Nice photos too.

WWT Welney