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LBS & tourism through the eyes of a postgrad marketing student in New Zealand.

Monday, June 06, 2005


Herecast: an open infrastructure for location-based services using WiFi
"Herecast provides location-based services on a WiFi device. At its simplest level, it can tell you where you are. More advanced services can use your location to enhance information lookups, publish presence information, and create unique games - all while preserving privacy.
Once your mobile device knows where it is, it can provide all sorts of interesting location-aware services. For example, you could:
  • Bring up a map of your location with a single click.
  • Access a web site relevant to your location.
  • Publish your location to your friends.
  • Leave messages at a point in space, for other people to discover.
  • Chat with anyone else who happens to be in the area -- meet people you wouldn't have gotten to know otherwise.
  • Play new types of games where you progress as you hunt around the city.

Only a few of these have been implemented on Herecast so far, but anyone with an imagination can create their own services that work with Herecast. Location-aware services are a relatively new area of innovation. It simply hasn't been possible to do this sort of thing until recently, so I'm sure the best ideas haven't even been thought of yet!"

Sometimes it seems like my blog is just a series of ads for all the LBS apps that I keep discovering! But I must record them somewhere because it's so easy to lose track... I like Herecast particularly because of its open infrastructure, very much in the spirit of a wiki (i.e. user co-creation of value). Also, while using WiFi as the basis for the services is somewhat geographically limiting, it also seems to be somewhat cheaper and more efficient than using other types of location technologies. Especially in New Zealand, where our hilly terrain makes for very difficult positioning, and the technical infrastructure for LBS isn't really here yet... Probably the only way we will really get LBS is by utilising ALL the possible means of locating a user - GPS, Cell-ID, EOTD, WiFi, etc... Of course, getting them to all link together is another matter entirely!


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