Emergency Response will be only as useful as privacy laws allow

  • Posted on: 14 May 2012
Contributing Author Information:
Contributed by: 
Kevin Pomfret

There are several free and “for fee” apps in the iPhone and Android app marketplaces that leverage the Open GeoSMS standard recently approved by the OGC. One of the apps’ primary benefits is for people to send location-enabled texts to first responders in order to learn the best evacuation procedures during a crisis and/or to facilitate rescue.   Without the automatic inclusion of location in the texts, first responders often have difficulty determining the location of the sender of the text, and how best to respond.

The Power of Location

“Location targeting is the holy grail for marketers.” This statement was directed to an entire industry at Mobile World Congress by Sir Martin Sorrell, CEO of the world's largest advertising company by revenues. While this may be a revelation of a new reality to some, the geographer reading this might be saying, "Where's Waldo?" The so-called first law of geography from Waldo Tobler is "Everything is related to everything else, but near things are more related than distant things.” This was recently validated by analysis of

Mobile Development

"Mobile First!"  Why?  Because mobile is exploding; because mobile forces you to focus; and because mobile extends your capabilities. Take two minutes to watch the introduction of this Luke Wroblewski video.  Over the next few years, tablets will have a compound annual growth rate of 35%;  Smart phones will grow by 18% (Canalys).  Yrjö Neuvo, former Nokia CTO, predicts that by 2020, mobile users will be