W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-geolocation@w3.org > August 2011

Re: geolocation.setCurrentPosition({...}): a way to debug geolocation and give more power to users.

From: Wojciech Masłowski <wmaslowski@opera.com>
Date: Thu, 25 Aug 2011 09:20:43 +0200
Message-ID: <4E55F7CB.6080807@opera.com>
To: louis-rémi Babé <lrbabe@gmail.com>
CC: public-geolocation@w3.org
W dniu 2011-08-24 09:45, Charles McCathieNevile pisze:
> On Tue, 23 Aug 2011 19:33:29 +0200, Richard L. Barnes 
> <rbarnes@bbn.com> wrote:
>> +1
> Agreed. There are easy ways in Opera to control the information you 
> send websites. It would seem to suggest that this is something that 
> the user agent should handle in its UI, rather than being in the spec.
For debugging in Opera you might try Geolocation Provider unite app 
which implements alternative dummy geolocation provider service.

> cheers
>> On Aug 23, 2011, at 1:21 PM, Doug Turner wrote:
>>> I think this is out of scope of the working group.
>>> Regards,
>>> Doug
>>> On Aug 23, 2011, at 8:58 AM, louis-rémi Babé wrote:
>>>> Yes, this is what I want to do.
>>>> This kind of API shouldn't be able to control browser features such as
>>>> permission prompt.
>>>> Looking at NetworkGeolocationProvider.js in Mozilla central, this
>>>> doesn't appear easy to do.
>>>> And it is impossible to do in all other browsers.
>>>> I'm aware that allowing developers to debug an API is not usually part
>>>> of that API design. But most APIs are still easy to debug (it is
>>>> possible to generate custom events to debug event based APIs for
>>>> instance). Developers are able to create their own tools and do not
>>>> have to wait for browser vendors to implement ready to use tools.
>>>> The geolocation API can currently be only debugged if you own the
>>>> source code of the application and insert "debugging hooks".
>>>> I think this situation is not ideal. And I think giving users an easy
>>>> way to control the position info sent to websites is important too.
>>>> Lr
>>>> 2011/8/17 Doug Turner <doug.turner@gmail.com>:
>>>>> So, in general, you want a way to setup a mock position for 
>>>>> testing purposes?  Do you also want to be able to control the 
>>>>> permission prompt in this case?
>>>>> In FF's case, it is trivial to write an add-on that does this - 
>>>>> something that you can share with other users.  (In fact, our test 
>>>>> infrastructure basically has exactly this without the add-on 
>>>>> packaging).
>>>>> Doug
>>>>> On Aug 17, 2011, at 8:31 AM, louis-rémi Babé wrote:
>>>>>> Hi all,
>>>>>> I'm currently frustrated by the lack of debuging tools regarding the
>>>>>> geolocation API, as opposed to other event based device APIs such as
>>>>>> deviceorientation.
>>>>>> To debug deviceorientation, I can simply generate a custom event 
>>>>>> right
>>>>>> from my js console using create/init/dispatchEvent.
>>>>>> And I can do so on any website listening to deviceorientation events
>>>>>> (I don't need to be the author).
>>>>>> It is impossible to do the same thing with the geolocation API. To
>>>>>> debug it I need the following kind of code:
>>>>>>    // can't use inline handler
>>>>>>    function positionHandler( event ) {
>>>>>>        ...
>>>>>>    }
>>>>>>    navigator.geolocation.watchPosition( positionHandler );
>>>>>>    // need to create a global "debug object" to make the
>>>>>>    // positionHandler available from my js console
>>>>>>    window.updatePosition = positionHandler;
>>>>>> It requires to add one extra line to my code for debugging purpose,
>>>>>> and I need to be the author of the website.
>>>>>> I can alternatively write a geolocation provider for my Web browser,
>>>>>> but that requires a far larger amount of work, a kind of knowledge
>>>>>> that Web developers do not necessarily have, and it isn't a cross
>>>>>> browser solution.
>>>>>> geolocation.setCurrentPosition() would allow to create a fake 
>>>>>> position
>>>>>> in the flow of "real" position updates.
>>>>>> Users could simply ignore the "permission prompt" on a website 
>>>>>> and use
>>>>>> setCurrentPosition() to have complete control over the position
>>>>>> updates provided to a website.
>>>>>> Thank you in advance for your feedback,
>>>>>> louisremi@mozilla.com

Wojciech Masłowski
Engeneering CORE Wrocław
Opera Software ASA
Received on Thursday, 25 August 2011 07:21:34 UTC

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