Twitter Gets Some Geo-Tagging Goodness

Aug 21, 2009
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Are you tired of tweeting and having to tell people where you are? You only have 140 characters, and that space is precious, right? Well, good news for you. Twitter is offering some geo-tagging APIs for developers, letting them expand on the service before they officially launch it on their website. It's not a surprise that Twitter is quick to latch onto this trend at all, as geo-tagging locations is a pretty big deal now a days, especially when it comes pre-loaded on phones like the HTC Hero (Footprints).

First and foremost, it should be noted that this geolocation service is opt-in. Meaning, you have to give permission to Twitter to gather your location information. This sort of thing has been kind of a heated debate on other devices, so it's good to see Twitter going ahead and covering their bases right from the get-go. Biz Stone, the founder of Twitter, said, "we're gearing up to launch a new feature which makes Twitter truly location-aware. A new API will allow developers to add latitude and longitude to any tweet. Folks will need to activate this new feature by choice because it will be off by default and the exact location data won't be stored for an extended period of time." He goes on to say that additional functionality could be gained by this feature: like instead of reading only tweets from people you follow, you could also read tweets from your neighborhood or city.

There's a lot of other implications for this. You could follow people who are at a concert or movie with you (don't text during movies though, folks). Stone also mentioned that even during national emergencies, like an earthquake, the API could be used to find people who need help.

[via Hot Hardware]


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