Wireless Wonders

No news, just comment about mobile phones and services, from a veteran practitioner...3G, GPRS, WAP, Bluetooth, WiFi, etc...

Monday, January 31, 2005

Seeing Engines...

We are a step closer to being able to view remotely anything on the planet. OK, I exaggerate about anything on the planet. But, adding to the eyeball tendrils of web-cam world is the ability to visualize addresses in a directory. Amazon's interesting search engine - A9.com - adds photos to addresses in the Yellow Pages, albeit for a limited number of localities in the US.

This is nothing new, except it's one of the first times such a feature has appeared in an aspiring mainstream service and not some lab demo, or the like.

The A9 team took the pics themselves using a camera mounted on a car with the shutter synchronized to GPS co-ordinates.

This technique has already been used effectively by the team at Property Key I(PK). They use it to grab house pictures, for a variety of applications.

However, PK are a bit more diligent than the guys at A9, who managed to catch some pictures obscured by obstacles like buses, as featured on Seth Godin's site.

Now, sooner or later, legions of camera-phone holders are going to start posting in cyberspace pictures with co-ordinate information attached, as per the Spatial Messaging concept.

Once this happens, and search engines - like A9.com - can pick out the necessary co-ordinate meta-data geo-coded back to a postal address, who knows what we will see? I'm sure it'll be more interesting than buses.

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