Back in December, Jonas said “Wouldn’t it be cool if you could highlight an address on a web page and get subway directions to that location?” Cool indeed. I thought a bookmarklet would do the trick, so I came up with this one: HS Directions from ESB (does not work in IE). This bookmarklet will give subway directions from the Empire State Building to an address (highlighted in the browser) in Manhattan. The idea here being that one would use their home or work address rather than that of the Empire State Building. By having this bookmarklet in your browser, you’re one click away from subway directions.

There are some limitations to this method. For instance, the “Manhattan” destination is coded in the bookmarklet, if your destination is, say, Brooklyn, it’s not going to work. If you traveled to another borough regularly, you could have an additional bookmarklet; more than a couple of these would become unmanageable. Further, HopStop takes other variables into account like time of day and such when calculating routes. This bookmarklet doesn’t really help with that.

I went as far as creating a little HopStop bookmarkelet generator that allowed one to select the default start and end points for routes, then it created a bookmarklet on the fly which could be moved to the browser’s bookmarks. This worked pretty well. But, given the aforementioned limitations, I wondered if it would be all that useful. If anyone is interested in this, let me know and I might dust off the old project. It, however, would be even better if HopStop offered a generator like this.

One thought on “HopStop Bookmarklet

  1. First off, THANKS FOR AN AWESOME TOOL. I use it all the time (except when we were planning to meet at the Spotted Pig, and I took the red train when I clearly should have taken a blue one).

    The borough limitation that JP mentions above is a little annoying, but there are two workarounds I’ve found for this:

    * Highlight the street address (even though it’s in another borough) and activate the bookmarklet. A few seconds later, you’ll be greeted by a friendly page on hopstop saying they can’t find your destination address. They give you an opportunity to select a different borough right there on the page. Presto, you’ve got directions.

    OR

    * Just don’t leave the island

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