Thursday, August 14, 2008

Geo-aware Internet - telling people where you are

Keep Track of Yourself with Yahoo's Fire Eagle
see also Fire Eagle

Yahoo users on the go can share their location data with friends on Yahoo's Fire Eagle, a "geo-aware" platform. Wireless users can upload their location to Fire Eagle and share it. Yahoo's Fire Eagle platform is free and was developed by Yahoo's Brickyard development community.

Yahoo officially announced its geo-social network, Fire Eagle, late Tuesday. The system has been in private beta since March with selected developers, and already hosts a raft of third-party applications.

Fire Eagle allows users to store their location data on the Web for access by any network service. For example, wireless Relevant Products/Services users can upload their location and share it with family, friends or colleagues. It could make short work of finding someone in a crowded venue.

Yahoo calls Fire Eagle a "geo-aware" platform.

Users must sign up for the free service at to use applications. Once logged in they can choose varying levels of privacy -- from exact location to none, and customize who can access that location. Users can update information automatically through Web, mobile Relevant Products/Services or desktop applications, or set the service to manual update only.

Yahoo seems adamant about keeping privacy and permission sacrosanct, perhaps in response to recent testimony before Congress about the use of private data by networking companies. Yahoo has testified before the subcommittee that oversees Web business.

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