July 3rd, 2009

Looking to beat the heat with your friends this July 4th? Send out a Beer Signal

Looking to beat the heat with your friends this July 4th? Send out a Beer Signal

There’s no doubt that Portland, Oregon, is one of the most beer-o-phile-ish towns in the world. We’ve got our bevy of microbreweries, our randomly stocked beer groceries, our brewers’ festivals, and any number of folks working to keep us informed about just what’s happening in the world of beer.

That said, there’s always room for more beer-oriented stuff around here. Enter Portland’s own Taplister‘s new iPhone app Beer Signal—an app that could have more of those beer discussions happening in person.

How’s it work? Beer Signal lets iPhone users check out their favorite watering holes to see what’s on tap, using data gathered from Twitter, everybody’s favorite microblogging platform. That’s right, Twitter. Beer afficianados can send Taplister the current beers on tap by tagging the message with #ontappdx. That information, in turn, is slurped into Beer Signal, so that you’ve always got the latest and greatest crowdsourced tap information.

But what about the friends part? Well, Beer Signal also ties into email, Twitter, and Portland-based Shizzow, the service that lets you alert friends as to where you are at any given moment. So once you’ve selected the location you’ll be quaffing your favorite brew, you’re just a couple of taps away from broadcasting that information to your friends.

But don’t just take my word for it. Willamette Week likes the local flavor of Beer Signal:

This app stands out from other beer-related iPhone programs because it uses a list of Portland pubs. Beer Signal’s site says there are 50 venues and 400 beers listed and up to date. It also includes listings of beers on tap (if provided by the pub) and the ability to tweet which fine brew you are drinking.

And as Beervana reminds us, only you can help prevent outdated tap lists in the app:

And now, with the app, you can instantly update taplists while you’re drinking in a pub. The more people who use it and participate in keeping it updated, the more it will function properly. I’ve no doubt that the early weeks will be rocky, but I’m prepared to do my bit and keep it updated when I hit the pubs.

Need more details the iPhone app? Shizzow has a great interview with Ken Baer, the guy who developed it.

Don’t have an iPhone? Don’t worry. I can find a bunch of beer drinkers for you. How? Well, Taplister is having a launch party on Monday evening at Eastburn.

Rest assured, Taplister is much bigger than the iPhone app. And while I’m sure I’ll write more about them later, for now all you need to know is that Taplister is the passion project of Ken Baer, Kerry Finsand, Kevin Scaldeferri, and Scott Wray, built with the hopes of providing more community resources to help Portlanders find the beers they love—and to share those loves with their friends.

For more information, visit Taplister or Beer Signal. To RSVP, see the Taplister launch party on Upcoming. And, of course, have a happy and safe 4th of July.

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2 Responses to “Looking to beat the heat with your friends this July 4th? Send out a Beer Signal”

  1. Rick,

    Thanks for your writeup. We’re very excited to welcome the local beer and tech community at our launch party on Monday, and hope that others are as excited about the possibilties of Taplister and Beer Signal as we are. Remember, this is all powered by you, the beer drinkers of Portland, so try the app and keep those tweets rolling in!

    Kevin Scaldeferri

  2. [...] palate.” So much so, in fact, that we talk about beer, tweet about beer, and carry Portland-built iPhone apps like Taplister on our phones. Just to help us better understand what beer is available [...]

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