Last year I worked on a project with my friend Israel Kloss called FreeAlert. The site is not-for-profit and was originally intended to help refugees entering the Washington, DC area find things they need for free. It now covers major metropolitan areas all across the United States and is intended to benefit everyone.
The idea is simple. Enter some keywords and get matching free items off of craigslist for your city sent to your cell phone. You can enter up to 5 sets of keywords and each set has exclusion terms. This makes it so that you can receive notices with the term computer but without the term desk. Israel just took the site out of private beta last week and it is currently in public beta mode.
It was an interesting project for me because it gave me the chance to work in python on some http and smtp protocol code. It also gave me the chance to work on processing xml and rss feeds. Definitely some cool stuff there and it has resulted in a spin-off that will probably be functioning fairly soon. Israel is one of those people with a lot of great ideas and he has the personality to inspire you with them. Plus he is also one of those rare people that actually care enough about the suffering of others to actually try to do something about it, which you just have to admire.
So, please, check it out and let us know how we can make it better.