Technology Guardian Top Sites Fueled by Location
Per the article:
The explosion in location-based services is driven by the growing number of mobile phones, such as Apple’s iPhone and a number of RIM’s BlackBerry smartphones, which have built-in Global Positioning System (GPS) chips, able to report their position with an accuracy of a few metres. Given that and the user’s willingness to volunteer their location, people can let friends know where they are - or find new ones in the area.
The top 100 listing identifies four sites - Dopplr.com, Qype.com, Loopt.com and Brightkite.com - which hold notable potential for location-based work. A key to their development has been the growth in map products online - another area that the Guardian’s technology writers identified as a key area of expansion, as Google and Microsoft vie to provide programming hooks called APIs, which mean the GPS data can be transformed into a “pushpin” on a map display - known as a “mashup” of the two pieces of data, from the GPS and the map. Google’s mapping service, which in December 2006 had only had such coding for six months, is now in widespread use.
Interestingly, the geo sites that make the list of 100 total sites are broken into two categories: location and maps. They might also appear in games, social networks, reminders, search, visualization…it’s so tough to put a horizontal technology into a vertical box!