Taylor

Your personal travel assistant that tells you where to go

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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
I built this in a week for fun! 🎈

I started when @marckohlbrugge told me Telegram had published their Bot API (see http://www.producthunt.com/tech/...). I didn't really take it seriously but then I thought maybe I could make something that used Nomad List's data to tell you which πŸŒ‡ cities to go. That got out of hand πŸ‘» and now it can do a lot more than that:

You start with sharing your GPS location with it via chat. Then it can find β˜• coffee shops and πŸ’» coworking spaces near you, as well as 🏨 hotels and hostels. And it takes into account what kind of traveler you are, a budget backpacker, or more expensive expat. And makes recommendations based on that.

Also it can tell you πŸƒ people that are around you (based on other people chatting with Taylor). And then you can tap their username and chat to them instantly.

In the last week, about 250 people used it. And @jmeistrich randomly met his American college friend in Slovenia through it! πŸ˜€ https://twitter.com/jmeistrich/s...

I spent the whole week testing it with @emieljanson, @bramk and @marckohlbrugge on Telegram. I think they're totally sick of it now πŸ™ˆ In the future, I'd love to deploy it on Whatsapp and FB Messenger too, but their API is still closed I think! Also planned features are live push messages based on what's happening around you. All via chat because as @rrhoover says, interfaceless is the new interface.
Tom MasieroΒ β€” GM of LaunchBit
@levelsio love the concept. I'm curious as to why you didn't try this via sms first?
Ilias IsmanalijevΒ β€” Designer & Front-end Developer
@blendahtom @levelsio You get great features with Telegram like auto-complete or suggested answers. You get a lot of messages through the bot so that would be costly using SMS for both sides. That's my guess.
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@blendahtom @levelsio from what I know, most of the world doesn't use SMS anymore, US is a big exception since SMS bundles are free, but the rest of the world already switched to Whatsapp, Telegram, FB Messenger etc.

I myself never use SMS (or voice for that matter). Everything I do on a smartphone is now data-only, so calling through Skype, messages through Telegram.
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@illyism @levelsio yes, that too, SMS costs money, this doesn't cost money
Eddie PrattΒ β€” Product Manager, ProductSnacks.com
@levelsio Hey, thanks for building and sharing :-) Looks really interesting. I've never used Telegram before. I clicked through on my Mac and was going to try it out. What happens to my phone number when I enter it in? Does that go into someone's database? Is it fundamental to the service working? Was a bit confused why it was needed on my laptop! Thanks and sorry if this is a dumb question.
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@prattarazzi @levelsio Ah it's just like WhatsApp! It's to confirm you're a human.
Irving TorresΒ β€” Freelance Designer
This is great. Another phenomenal project by Pieter. The only downside is that Telegram (at least the web apps) are buggy for me. I got stuck on the location prompt. The native iOS app is great though. There's not a lot of info about San Diego, CA but I was able to get recommendations for places to go to based on my budget and preferences (pulls this info in from Pieter's other project, NomadLIst). Overall, this experience is really neat.
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@irvingtorresyc I think I fixed the location prompt now, you can enter cities now instead of sharing your location (Telegram's web app doesn't support location sharing yet). I'll keep sourcing more locations to work and sleep and improve that data.

The quality of places is not where I want it to be yet, but at least the infrastructure to get that data to users is there now (through Nomad List and Taylor). It's just a matter of sourcing the right APIs to get this data and using algorithms to score them so I can show the best/nearest ones to users.
Darren J SmithΒ β€” Founder, Pillow.io
I just got around to playing with this - it's fun! I'm not convinced that "interfaceless" is the right solution for map based information lookup, though :)
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@darrenux I agree, I think it's just one of the interfaces people will access your app/service/data through. Think website, app and chat interface, all to get the same. At least, that's my hypothesis.
Myna MomentsΒ β€” Chance vs Opportunity
Great use of Telegram's new bot API. Needs to have relevant suggestions. Just got too many commercial recommendations for open office space. Looking forward to seeing how this evolves.
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@tomflemming Thanks Tom, which city did you try? I'll keep adding better sources for work places.
Myna MomentsΒ β€” Chance vs Opportunity
@levelsio Looking at London the results have too many commercial shared office spaces, the ones I would really try to avoid. Would be great to some more of the current and happening ones.
Dilyar BaturΒ β€” Kick Ass Canadian Entrepreneur
It's almost like Siri, but for travellers, and... upgraded.
Blaine HatabΒ β€” Co-founder, Open Minded Innovations
Since this is essentially just a virtual travel agency and there are a ton of travel agencies with qualified employees, I wonder how well a platform to help existing travel agencies expand their reach would do.
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@blainehatab I think you make a great point, Blaine. There's area here to mix automation and humans, I've just added a feature where users can ask Taylor to help them with custom paid requests at $50 per question. Inspired by @marckohlbrugge. I'm testing to see if that works first.
Mike SlaghΒ β€” Chairman and Co-founder, VetTechTrek
@levelsio that's a really interesting idea. Would payments be integrated in telegram as well?
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@mslagh @blainehatab I hope in the future @durov (the maker of Telegram) adds that. Until then having a simple payment link to a Stripe page would work. Then it confirms payment, and the bot gives you what you paid for.
Mike SlaghΒ β€” Chairman and Co-founder, VetTechTrek
@levelsio yup πŸ’―. Interfaceless payments have a ways to come but it only seems a matter of time. why not in iMessage a la Fb Messenger? I want to be able to get talented people like you on demand, but I want it to feel like texting. I'd πŸ’Έ for that.
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@mslagh @blainehatab their APIs aren't open yet to do this, nor iMessage, nor FB, nor WhatsApp, hopefully soon
Blaine HatabΒ β€” Co-founder, Open Minded Innovations
@levelsio It's a fantastic MVP. Hope you blow it up.
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@blainehatab so rude πŸ˜€ I don't want to blow up, I want to live!!
Anh-Minh DoΒ β€” Editor, Tech In Asia
Well, I think Whatsapp is much better on speed and reliability than any other chat app. Telegram is better in terms of new implementation of advanced tech features (via the community). Whatsapp itself didn't to any marketing either.
Sam DoshiΒ β€” Co Founder @ Relayo.com
Just found this -- this is cool
Chris Messina ✁_____Β β€” Developer Experience Lead at @Uber
How does this differ from Native? What's good/bad about their model, if you have thoughts, @levelsio?
Felix KrauseΒ β€” iOS/Ruby Dev working on fastlane
@chrismessina Taylor is an automated Telegram Bot, not a team of people answering questions.
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@chrismessina Native looks great but seems more like a Q&A database. This is a real-time chat with an (automated) assistant that gives you instant recommendations on where to travel to, where to stay and where to work.

The idea is that you arrive in a new place, share your location with Taylor and it helps you get set up in a new city faster. It always takes me days to figure out my routine of waking up, getting coffee, finding a GOOD place to work in a new city and having an assistant that helps you with that, can save me time setting up that routine.

There's endless ideas I can think off to add here too, like connecting it to local taxi services, and sourcing sightseeing data so it can tell you what you should see.

The business model would be taking a commission on the services you link to, so users can book it and Taylor takes a %.
Anh-Minh DoΒ β€” Editor, Tech In Asia
Wow, this is awesome. Does anybody know of any other bots out there that I should check out?
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@hellominhdo I like @hotorbot on Telegram, haha!
Anh-Minh DoΒ β€” Editor, Tech In Asia
@levelsio oh. Haha. Not so useful to a married guy like me. ;)
Paul TomkinsonΒ β€” Founder, Textras
Exciting space and I love how emoji's can integrate right into make a cool UX. SMS is still l pretty big actually. Huge in a lot of places and with certain segments still the primary means of communication. But I think both SMS and OTT have huge potential irrespective of each other. I am going to try this out after I finish eating my July 4th hot dog, which I am currently doing. Nice job it looks pretty good!
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@paultomkinson I think SMS is very US-centric, the rest of the world already moved to messaging apps
Another great product from levels.ioπŸ˜πŸ‘
Matthew HuiΒ β€” Founder @ Backpak.io
As I have used your website many times before, Taylor was a little redundant but I can see new users latching onto this. Congrats on the launch!
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@matthui thanks Matthew! I hope to reach a more mainstream travel audience a bit away from the niche nomad audience.
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
Thanks for all the feedback Hunters! I just made the landing page dynamic based on your location, so you'll get a better idea of how it actually works without using it.
CedΒ β€” Founder at Schooold
@levelsio great stuff. Been following a lot of your items and this is another great start
Ilias IsmanalijevΒ β€” Designer & Front-end Developer
@levelsio Clever stuff! It works great for my location. You gave me some good inspiration for making my own bot!
David IwanowΒ β€” SEO Product Manager, Marktplaats.nl
@levelsio I love the idea but not enough to download Telegram app, I agree the world has moved away from SMS but couldn't this work with other messenger apps like WhatsApp?

When it moves to other platforms beyond Telegram I'll consider playing with it
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levelsioΒ β€” Founder of Nomad List
@davidiwanow Hi David! WhatsApp's API is closed and they sue anyone who tries to use their service outside the app (e.g. building a robot): https://github.com/venomous0x/Wh...

Still I'll try it but I'll probably get shut down by their legal team. Which is a sad state of affairs.

I'd recommend you to try Telegram, it's not controlled by a billion dollar company and is not in bed with the NSA.
Anh-Minh DoΒ β€” Editor, Tech In Asia
@levelsio totally agree. Telegram is just superior on the tech. Whatsapp, in comparison to Telegram and the other dominating chat apps in the space, is atrociously behind the times.
David IwanowΒ β€” SEO Product Manager, Marktplaats.nl
@levelsio yes it is harder when companies lock down API access but you can understand my apprehension to download an App Telegram to use your App... I accept that Facebook is pushing that model via it's Messenger platform but I'll just wait
David IwanowΒ β€” SEO Product Manager, Marktplaats.nl
@hellominhdo superior doesn't win it's adoption.... look at the many tech battles VHS vs Betamax, HD-DVD vs Blueray... it's marketing and adoption by consumers
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