A Map Of New York's Lost Mittens

Tuesday, February 11, 2014 - 01:52 PM


I Found Your Mitten is a single serving site which maps the locations of lost mittens throughout New York City.

It's pretty simple. To report an orphaned mitten, you either tag a photo with #ifoundyourmitten on Instagram, or email it to ifoundyourmitten@gmail.com. When someone accesses the site, they can see lost mittens by map or by tiled photo. 

So we're all grown-ups here, and we can admit that the actual number of people likely to be reunited with a lost mitten through this website is somewhere between none and few. But I like it anyway. 

There should be a name for this category of website. A word to describe a site which presents itself as a utility, but is probably more of a whimsical proof-of-concept. It's kind of like a less-than-single-serving-site (which is not the name I'm proposing!)

Whatever these are, to say they don't pass the test of non-hypothetical usefulness isn't to say that they're bad. I'm a sucker for a good mitten map, and I don't think the world's any poorer for having this one. But for better or worse, it's one more example of a website where most of the value it offers is just as a link. If the site were completely broken, I'm not sure how much less useful it'd be. It's exists as an idea for people to be charmed or annoyed by and then tell someone else about. 


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Comments [3]

Beth Tondreau


More an obsession than a game, I have a Flickr set with gloves I've found. Family and friends contribute too. There are parallel solo gloves (and mittens)!

Feb. 12 2014 09:01 AM

No disrespect intended, but most of these are pictures of gloves, not mittens. Otherwise, cool site.

Feb. 11 2014 08:24 PM

Fun post! I started ifoundyourmitten and wrote a little story about it here: https://readtapestry.com/s/6erkZSPAd/

I launched it just for fun in 2007. This was pre-instagram - the map pulled in posts people sent to flickr. The map is outdated now, I need to update it with the instagram feed. You can see all the current mittens here: http://photoswirl.us/t/ifoundyourmitten

At this point ifoundyourmitten has turned into a game. We have a small community of dedicated mitten finders who compete each season to find the most list mittens. @AHarmonica @bmorrissey are currently in the lead! We almost 1,000 lost mitten posts on instagram.

Stay warm and hold on to your mittens NYC.

Feb. 11 2014 07:08 PM

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TLDR is a short podcast and blog about the internet by Meredith Haggerty. You can subscribe to the TLDR podcast here. You can follow our blog here. I tweet @manymanywords and @tldr.

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