Geo-location Services

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Geo-location services = services that allow you to know where you are physically, and eventually to call up virtual information on certain objects in that location.



  • Foursquare is a location-based social network that allows users to 'check-in' at various locations in cities around the world, broadcasting their location to their friends and meeting new people. In return, they are awarded points and badges, and can read tips left by other users.
  • Gowalla is a social networking game that encourages users to share their location using a range of applications designed for mobile devices. The network features in-game 'items' which can be collected as bonuses or dropped and swapped between users at check-in 'Spots'.
  • Loopt Mix enables users to find and chat to people that are nearby. The app also allows users to create their own profiles, like and tag content and also favorite contacts to make it quicker and easier for the user to access their social circles.
  • Google’s Latitude lets users see the approximate location of their friends and loved ones.
  • And just in: Twitter Places, which allows Twitter users to tag their tweets with specific locations such as bars, restaurants, stadiums or landmarks. Integration with Foursquare and Gowalla will also enable users search for checkins from these services alongside local tweets."


Cellphone-based geo-location services

"If you stand on a street corner in Tokyo today you can point a specialized cellphone at a hotel, a restaurant or a historical monument, and with the press of a button the phone will display information from the Internet describing the object you are looking at.

The new service is made possible by the efforts of three Japanese companies and GeoVector, a small American technology firm, and it represents a missing link between cyberspace and the physical world.

The phones combine satellite-based navigation, precise to within 30 feet or less, with an electronic compass to provide a new dimension of orientation. Connect the device to the Internet and it is possible to overlay the point-and-click simplicity of a computer screen on top of the real world." (cited by Michael Parekh at

More information

  1. A 2003 overview at
  2. Geo-location and privacy, at
  3. See/hear the podcast/webcast by Michael Liebhold on the Geospatial Web
  4. Geo-Vector is at
  5. Where 2.0, annual conference by O'Reilly.
  6. Tracking and Alerting Services