Thursday, April 12, 2012

Zip codes

When I see a quote like this:

Ziptastic is a simple API that allows people to ask which Country,State and City are associated with a Zip Code.

The purpose for this service is to STOP the madness of having to fill those information out on webforms. If you've ever filled out a webform, then you have probably gotten to the address section and simply entered in your street information and then your city, state, country and then your zip code. This has always bothered me because the 3 fields prior to the zip code can be determined from the zip code!

I always think of this:

For example, approximately 85% of the area served by the ZIP code 85254, to which the place name Scottsdale, Arizona, is assigned, is actually inside the city limits of neighboring Phoenix. This is because the Scottsdale post office serves this area. This may lead some residents of the ZIP code to mistakenly believe they live in Scottsdale when they actually live in Phoenix.

Similarly, Missouri City, Texas, straddles Harris and Fort Bend counties. The portion within Harris County is within the ZIP code 77071, which must use the city name of Houston instead of Missouri City. At the same time, a small portion of the city of Houston is in Fort Bend County in the ZIP code 77489, and residents there must use the name Missouri City for their address even though they are in Houston.

And so on. Perhaps something that hits close to home since I must write one city for my mail, but I really live in a different city and vote and whatnot accordingly.

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