Craig’s Little Buddy is very close to being a killer app. It lets users search multiple cities in CraigsList, a huge time saver if you’re trying to track down an elusive item and want to maximize your chances by adding surrounding areas to your search. I live in Houston, so for hard-to-find items, I’d like to be able to include Lafayette, Baton Rouge, Lake Charles, Austin, and San Antonio. Craig’s Little Buddy will allow me to do that.
The interface is slick and very easy to use. Choosing cities is accomplished by checking boxes on a pop-up; Select All and Restore defaults are provided options but they could really benefit from a Deselect All choice here as well.
Search is straight-forward. Choose a CraigsList category and/or use keywords, just as you’d do on CraigsList. One of the things I really like about the search is that it displays a list of the cities you’re searching – very handy, that, if you’re searching multiple cities. Each search result is appended with the city it’s located in, another handy feature.
It’s Craig’s Little Buddy’s handling of images, or rather their lack of handling, that keeps this from being a truly killer app. It would be nice if they’d include the ability to search only ads with images. It doesn’t seem like it would be that hard for them to integrate as Craig’s List already provides this functionality. Also, there are very few preview pictures, and what preview pics there are seem to be for dealer ads. I do like how they’ve handled the display of the preview pics, however – integrated right into the search result. Another nice feature to have would be to display the full-size image on rollover, much like the Firefox extension CraigsList Image Previewer. (In CLB’s defense, it is most likely CraigsList’s stingy nature that have prevented them from displaying preview photos.)
For the moment, I’ll stick with my combination of CraigsList and the FF CraigsList Image Previewer extension, however, if I was just using CraigsList, I’d switch over to this option in a heartbeat. If they’re ever able to more fully integrate images into the search results, this will be a hard site to beat.