groovr – communities and place

I am sure that I am finding this late, but it is always good for sites to get a second ripple through the blogs. I just stumbled across groovr (I am beginning to miss ‘e’s) which is a social networking site that is SMS based. Once you register you send a text message to groovr which, depending on what you send, allows to tell your friends where you are, create new places in the groovr database, make comments on where you are. This is not an location based project, instead it relies on groovr’s database of locations (you can search those on the website) and there are definitely more in the US than elsewhere, this is only limited by the number of people using the service. This is a great idea if you are trying to find someone on a Saturday night or, when I am more likely to use it, to catch up with friends at a conference when everyone has different schedules. Do keep in mind that your cell service provider charges for text messages 🙂

Navigation news for the travel season

Yeah, I am taking advantage of being out of Morgantown, and my Dad’s cable modem, to catch up with everything (uploading VSTV05 and AVSP75, reading RSS feeds). First, Samsung has announced their SPH-B5800 model that will include TPEG support for phone based traffic information, and everything you would expect from a phone, including a built in Tamagotchi like digital pet. CrunchGear also points out that Tomtom has new mapmaps available for registered customers.

CrunchGear » Blog Archive » TomTom Releases New MapMaps

Traffic reports to derive from cellphone location data – Engadget

Engadget passes along an article about using cellphone locations and movement to determine traffic patterns in metropolitan areas. Sam from OGC was talking about these types of services in his presentation on campus, though I don’t think we captured it in the podcast interview. In the end, it is just a variation of a sensor web but still pretty cool.

Traffic reports to derive from cellphone location data – Engadget review of Street Maps and Garmin GPS

On the Oct 19 episode of Digital Life TV (, Patrick Norton does a review of a dashmount Garmin GPS and the new Microsoft Streets and Trips and everyone uses many of the correct terms and phrases 🙂 The overall take on the Garmin model they reviewed was pretty good, and at a $250 (US) price tag it seems promising. Head over to to view the episode online or to download the video podcast. For the MS Streets and Trips they mention the Live Search integration. The review is around 35:00 minutes.

Surveyors to get long lunch in 2011 or 2012

Engadget has a post on some research that suggests that there will be an almost 90 percent loss of GPS signals for a number of hours at the height of the next solar flare cycle in 2011-2012. While surveyors may be looking forward to a long lunch or afternoon off, you may want to avoid traveling by sea or plane that day just in case :-).

Solar flares to disrupt GPS for several hours in 2011 or 2012 – Engadget

Loki updates and new features

While I await the royalties from the Chumby LBS based on Loki’s WiFi location capabilities I wanted to point out, belated as it may be, that there is a new version of Loki available that has some interesting new features, my favorite of which may be the automatic time zone changer for when you travel. I don’t expect to leave EST until next spring (probably about the same time the first Chumbies ship). Anyway, check out the new version of Loki and be sure to add Platial as a channel…well, just cause.