A pinch of Google Maps, a dash of Technorati and a sprinkling of Skype...
The idea behind web mash-ups is to create a new service by combining one or more aspects of existing sites, thereby cutting out the need to surf your way around the web. As such, they can be a handy time-saving tool if you're on the road with limited browsing time. So we've trawled the web to come up with five mash-ups with something to offer the business traveller - whether it's help finding a good hotel or a quick and easy way to get your RSS fix.
Find a hotel
Blending Google Maps with its own video footage of hotels, this mash-up reckons it can help you find a place to rest your head at the end of a hard day. It covers Western European capitals at present - and only a selection of hotels in those cities - but the vision of video content showcasing the reality of that four-star port of call sounds is worth chasing.
Mash me up: http://www.tvtrip.com
Image credit: TVtrip.com
Brain up on where you're going
Enter your destination and this site harvests data from Wikipedia and Flickr, among others, to generate a page of related words and pictures. YouTube integration is planned in the future.
Mash me up: http://virtualtraveller.wolfborder.org/
Image credit: Virtualtraveller
A Google Maps mash-up that incorporates "worldwide" wi-fi hotspot data to help you locate a wireless watering hole - or similar - where you can get online. Users of the site can report problems with listed hotspots.
Mash me up: http://www.findmesomewifi.com/
Image credit: Find Me Some Wifi
Know what's going on
This mash-up hooks into IM clients such as Skype and Google Talk via an RSS bot that you can 'chat' to - using basic commands - in order to keep updated with your chosen feeds. Add the bot as a contact to your buddy list and then send it URLs for feeds you want to subscribe to. It will then send feed data back to you in a chat window. No mess, no fuss.
Mash me up: http://www.anothr.com/
Image credit: Anothr
E-enable your conference
This site lets you create an online attendee list for conferences. Drawing on the likes of Technorati, Google Maps and Flickr, it creates a page showing the geographical spread of conference attendees, along with details of their interests and who they'd like to meet. It also adds links to blogs discussing the event too.
Mash me up: http://attendr.com/
Image credit: attendr