Culture: Website: Location   (+7)  [vote for, against]
Where to go, when you *gotta* go!

Sometimes you're out-and-about in the middle of nowheresville and you REALLY need to go. Maybe you're on a long car trip. Maybe you're out walking. Whatever. Anyway, I propose a web-based, international directory of bathrooms! People submit locations on bathrooms (IE: McDonalds in Galleria Mall), give *precise* location, and the website figures out the latitude/longitude of the bathroom.

Here's the fun part: With your wireless 2-way pager, such as a Blackberry, you simply send a request to an Email server (Like, "bathroom 19602") and it returns a list of the nearest bathrooms. If you want to get *really* fancy, you could send your GPS longitude, latitude and the website would send back even more accurate results.

Bathrooms could also be rated on cleanliness, availability of paper products, size etc... These would be then ranked, and then people could see the best bathrooms in the world! (And, also, the worst!)

Public bathrooms needn't be limited by how public they are. There are a LOT of corporations out there that inadvertently have public bathrooms but don't advertise it. This site would open these up to more users.

I would start the site myself, but I don't have the server and time.
-- gb2000, May 08 2002

(?) Where To Find The Nation’s Best Restroom
Probably not as extensive as gb2000 would like [half, May 09 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

Public Toilet Map
Only of use if you're in Australia, and no wireless support, but it's getting there [-alx, May 14 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

Baignade Interdite (no swimming here)
French speaking directory of the world's bathrooms, with photos, detailed features (paper, deodorant, etc) and overall score [vdh, Aug 29 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

(?) The Bathroom Diaries
"toilets...bathrooms...dignity" [phoenix, Oct 07 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

Eh? I don't follow...
-- gb2000, May 08 2002

McDonald's was often my saviour when I worked as a courier. It was known as a McShit with Lies (the lie being that you were going to buy some food after relieving yourself).
-- stupop, May 08 2002

I know this isn't really in the spirit of the HB, but could you not just ask someone?
-- mcscotland, May 08 2002

Would this site be accessible via handheld computer with wireless internet connection and GPS? PottyPilot?
-- half, May 08 2002

I think PeterSealy once had an idea similar to this, if not this exactly. Someone did.
-- waugsqueke, May 08 2002

Ooops, stool ate, bliss? Yuk.

If this could be accessed with a normal cell phone when you're in a mall or something that would be cool.

[half]: GPS doesn't work indoors without complicated re-radiation antenna schemes. Some other localization technology would need to be employed.
-- bristolz, May 08 2002

[bristolz], the GPS wasn't my idea, I was just playing with it. But it would be helpful to get to the general location. I was keying in on the "long car trip" and "middle of nowheresville" and "out walking". My GPS works well in all of those circumstances. I agree that the GPS would be pretty useless in a mall.

If you could somehow work in some advertising in the search results this idea might even be profitable. Search results: "Publicly accessible restrooms are located in the lower level of the BankXYZ building. Be sure to pick up a pack of gum at Joe's Sundries on the first floor" (Please, no lectures about the evils of internet advertising/banner ads etc.)
-- half, May 08 2002

I hesitate to suggest it, but... bluetooth?

It would work well in the Mall, which should be wired to receive it, and could probably comunicate with the GPS device in your car.. Of course, this is twenty something years on..
-- yamahito, May 08 2002

But, I gotta go *now*.
-- half, May 08 2002

You should have gone before you came, half. Now just hold it...
-- yamahito, May 08 2002
-- half, May 08 2002

Added link to
-- half, May 09 2002

One quick question-- Would porta-potties, outhouses, and other various sorts of holes in the ground be deemed eligible to be listed on the site?
-- Pete55199, May 09 2002

Re: Portapotties - Ick! No, I don't think they would be eligable because of their intrinsic nature: They're portable!

As for the link, thank you! Unfortunately, they completely miss the point of having people vote for the best restroom. Who cares what the BEST restroom is? I need to find one NOW! Heh...
-- gb2000, May 09 2002

-- calum, May 09 2002
-- neelandan, May 14 2002

random, halfbakery