Idea: Location based services using jabber's pubsub mechanism?

Patrick Hanft patrick at
Sun Jul 8 15:53:41 CEST 2007

Hi list,

first of all I want to express my deep respect to all dev-guys and how 
I'm looking forward to consumer release in october. So, right now to 
the problem I've been thinking about.

In the last two weeks there has been a very interesting discussion 
about various location based services on the Neo based on location 
information provided by the GPS chip. I think these kind of services 
are very cool and I'm looking forward to the realisation of some of 
these. Now, let me say that I'm actually no dev-guy more the kind of 
power-user so I may have a limited view on things, but there was a 
lot of talking about a central server solution for collecting 
location information of openmoko users which is not really something, 
I like.

So I thought, what might be able to be a solution for this problem? 
Right now I think many of us would be interested to use instant 
messaging preferable a jabber client on the phone anyway. So I 
remembered about reading a lot some years ago about XMPP's (or 
Jabber's) public-subscription mechanism for announcing various types 
of information. As far as I understand this is quite a powerful 
mechanism, so there are already many problems of authenticating, 
distributing, availability and privacy quite or at least partly 

I have to admit that I have no real understanding of the pubsub 
protocol (again, I'm more user than developer), but I think it would 
be a good candidate for evaluation for use in such service ideas and 
could provide a great features for openmoko as well as a great use 
case for the Jabber protocol.

I hope that you guys who have a deeper knowledge about features, 
protocols and possibilities would like to have a look into this. 
Maybe here are also some guys who have knowledge about Jabber and can 
decide better than myself of how much use this idea is.
More information about Jabber's pubsub can be found here:
(But it's quite a techie document).

To explain: This "problem" of central server solutions, is explicitly 
not a question of trust I have to such a service, but more a question 
about how much can I trust authorities in the country this server 
could be situated. It's not that I believe there would be much danger 
of abuse, but I'd like to keep control over the services on openmoko.

Apart from that this mechanism could still allow central based 
services by allowing some bots to subscribe to pubsub nodes, so that 
shouldn't be impossible.

So far to my suggestion, I hope it can be useful (and my English is 
not as shit that it becomes un-understandable ;), tell me what you 

Best regards from .de,

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