Location services and age limit Re: Location in the news

(better subject for the mail)

About accessing location services for people who are under 18.

1. Blaming the API doesn't solve the issue.
2. Location services for children can be useful. "I'm lost in this street far away from home, how can I go back home?"
3. Location racking services on children might be helpful (good angels caring) and dangerous (hunters). 

There might be different ways of addressing these.

* There could be different set of features depending on the age of the user.
* Certification of ages online is not done and brings a ton of other issues such as 
  * privacy (when I enter in a bakery somewhere I do not have to give my age, my name or my address).
  * reliability (I do not know a good system which associate a digital identity to the person behind the computer. Identification system in the physical world do not rely *only* on the fact that you have an ID card but that this ID card that you are showing *here* is physically associated to you and the identification bit is often… the picture.)
* Change of social norms. It takes time, people get hurt, but it will happen. 

For me part of the answer is that carriers should make their celltowers location database and broadcasting completely open. So people devices could locate themselves without having to be hooked to a carrier.

What does it give? An additional layer of opacity. A geo service could send all the geo-tiles of a place and your location could be calculated on the device without having to broadcast it OR You could download maps of an area without having to rely on a live geo service.
This could also create plenty of new services, devices, applications that people could develop (ecosystem being improved, good for the market as large) 
BUT this would require a big shift for business people and maybe infrastructure (weakness of this proposal).

Karl Dubost
Montréal, QC, Canada

Received on Monday, 2 August 2010 20:37:08 UTC