Pokesearch (stylised as pokesear.ch) was a web based Pokemon scanner for the 2016 hit, Pokemon Go. I developed a rough first prototype solely for myself and a small group of friends. We all lived in the same area at the time and so I set up a static map and had had our entire town scanned 24/7. I setup alerts to my phone that notified me of rare Pokemon spawns and allowed us to race out at night to track them down. I remember running down our street in my pjs at 1am to catch the Snorlax that had spawned at the end of the road.

The first version of pokesear.ch was hosted directly from an old laptop I had sat collecting dust in my bedroom. The website had no domain and it was hardcoded to focus on my local area and to keep the area scanned for Pokemon. I didn't know tons about web development at the time and knew even less about servers and using Linux. A friend of a friend heard about the 24/7 scans of my town and asked whether I'd be able to setup a private map for him and his friends living in a different town. I said I'd do one better and add the ability to request scans on my original website.

With needing to share the website with other people I decided it was time to choose a domain name. PokeVision was already a well established name in the Pokemon Go scanning site business and I wanted something similar but with a fancy domain hack. My partner deserves the credit for coming up with a Pokemon searching site that'd have the name pokesear.ch using the .ch Swiss TLD. I've had quite a few confused Swiss people asking if I also was Swiss which always confused me a little; did this mean they thought that the domain was "pokemon sear"? that sounds a little morbid for a kids game. Anyway, on a long train ride to the Lake District I whipped up a very basic frontend and crufted together a hacky solution that would allow my town to be constantly scanned and for my friends town to be scanned whenever they requested it.