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Foursquare shows off with starry check-ins map

The site presents half a billion check-ins on a light map and highlights its recommendations feature.


Foursquare is showing off its last 500,000,000 check-ins with an interactive map that looks more like a galaxy than clusters of people checking into their favorite locations.

The map plots out all the check-ins -- which are so complete in some areas, it looks like a boundary map -- from the last three months in bright points against a black background. You can zoom in to get a closer look, but most of the activity is in the U.S. and the U.K.

Along with the map, Foursquare highlights its ramped up Foursquare Explore recommendations system in its blog.

"What makes Foursquare Explore so powerful is that all those check-ins you see aren't just single points -- they're links between all the other places people have been, too," the blog reads.

Foursquare wants you to use Explore as a way to get recommendations on businesses. The company said it uses check-ins to figure out which places you may want to check out based on people who have checked into similar places, as well as by pulling from your friends' check-ins.

It also highlighted its business tools and some of "thousands" of companies that use Foursquare within their apps: Instagram, Bing, Flickr, Quora, Path, Soundtracking, Evernote, and Garmin.

"Over 100 million people a month see Foursquare's location information through our partners," according to the blog post.

Note that Foursquare doesn't mention Facebook, which launched its graph search service -- a function that helps Facebook users find business recommendations, among other information -- this week.