public access point database

Dylan McCall dylanmccall at
Tue Jul 3 00:17:16 CEST 2007

As I wrote in that thread, I believe a static database is not the best
solution. The device could scan networks while idle and associate them with
GPS coordinates. A way to download existing known networks from a web
service could also be presented, if one wants to have an already built
catalog as you suggest (since the scanning would probably be a bit of a
drain on batteries).

I believe that this could all be unified with a centralized Locations system
that ties real world things (friend's houses to gaseous clouds, and
everything in between) with GPS coordinates. Those locations would all be
given Tags and extra options for addresses and the like. (The selected tags
could enable certain inputs, maybe?)
For example, a theatre phone disabler service could see if you are near a
known location with the tag "Theatre", or, of course, a Wifi access point
finder could scan for nearby locations with the tag "WiFi Access Point".
With that much data, of course, such a database could be rather hard to
wield. Just pondering, though :)

GPS coordinates are a really handy way for a device to know where it is, not
just for the user to know where he is! The trouble is that devices really
don't know the real world as well as the user; only the user knows his world
well enough to know how he wants his phone to act in it. Not even the
developers can anticipate the type of information he would want, or provide
it all without some insanely complicated infrastructure. (Google Maps times
10). Remember, this is a small device that is there with you in the real
world as you walk in it; not a big screen at home looking down at the real
world from a distance. It needs unprecedented detail, and I think the best
way to do that is to make it as intuitive for the user to provide his own
information for that location database as it is for the system to download
existing databases from the web.

-Dylan McCall

On 7/2/07, Don Park <don.park at> wrote:
> On 7/2/07, Stuart Gray <randomelginguy at> wrote:
> > seems to be along that lines, the software they are
> > using seems to be windows only at the moment though :(.  But maybe
> somebody
> > could write and open source one that still has access to the Google Wifi
> The website has something closer to what you
> describe. Its
> been around for years and has an active community uploading wifi tracking
> logs. Its  free to use and make queries from, short of downloading
> the entire database.
> Moving away from wifi for a moment, I think a personal location
> service would be a
> frequently requested app. could be used as a place to store
> lat/long records using its L:<location> feature.
> Don
> _______________________________________________
> OpenMoko community mailing list
> community at
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...

More information about the community mailing list