Expedia: Find Your Story Facebook App

The Kissinger Twins

Expedia: Find Your Story Facebook App

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“No.2 at Top 10 Essential Apps for the Modern Traveller”

Buzzfeed

IDEA

Facebook estimates that people upload more than 250 million photos to the social networking site daily. Over three-quarters of travelers post vacation photos to a social network. How could we make use of that content?”

The answer to this question is Expedia: Find Your Story, a multi-platform, Facebook Storytelling App. It allows users with no video editing skills to quickly compile vacation photos from their Facebook account into a short, stylized video integrated with Google maps.

Online travel companies are often reliant on the rational side of travel – finding the cheapest airline fare or hotel room. Expedia, however, understand that travel isn’t rational,  it’s personal and emotional. ‘Find yours’ is about more than changing places, it is, as the title suggest, about finding the things that change you.

The Process

The process is simple and intuitive.  Find Yours project consists of two parts. The first, is a simple and intuitive tool, where user inserts data in a few easy steps.  

The second, is a an interactive, video and photo-based scrolling experience.

As video can’t typically be played online on a mobile HTML5 site we built a complex server-side infrastructure that processes user videos as well as static visual content from our library. It then converts everything to a format that can be then displayed on a mobile HTML5 page.

Technology

The unique idea and design itself needed an imaginative approach for user control. Therefore we implemented a fully customized HTML5 scrolling engine that controls the experience as well as using many of the fresh HTML5-only and CSS3-only features that enable the user to have a more immersive experience.

To maintain a responsive design across all platforms we decided to share entire codebase among all devices, while implementing responsive design for the front end. As a result the website scales and reacts live to device specifications, browser window size, screen resolution etc.

As each ‘Expedia Find Yours’ experience requires many ‘Street view’ images and ‘Google Maps’ we implemented a bespoke maps engine which utilises the raw map images and combines them, allowing the user to pan and zoom the map smoothly. Overall the combination of both existing HTML5 features combined with our own prototyping and development has created a seamless and immersive user experience.

Visuals

The Kissinger Twins are responsible for all visuals created for this project. They shoot a number of abstract short video clips to ‘Find Your Story’ App’s library. Users can add them to have a bit more cinematic feel in their films. They are also responsible for all the atmospheric photos used in the Application.

‘It is not easy to make a film that evokes personal emotions and is built from Facebook content. A project that is really personal. Our approach was… let’s keep it simple and make a road movie. And hopefully there is a happy discovery at the end of this journey.’

The Kissinger Twins

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