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About The Authors

Suw Charman-Anderson

Suw Charman-Anderson

Suw Charman-Anderson is a social software consultant and writer who specialises in the use of blogs and wikis behind the firewall. With a background in journalism, publishing and web design, Suw is now one of the UK’s best known bloggers, frequently speaking at conferences and seminars.

Her personal blog is Chocolate and Vodka, and yes, she’s married to Kevin.

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Kevin Anderson

Kevin Anderson

Kevin Anderson is a freelance journalist and digital strategist with more than a decade of experience with the BBC and the Guardian. He has been a digital journalist since 1996 with experience in radio, television, print and the web. As a journalist, he uses blogs, social networks, Web 2.0 tools and mobile technology to break news, to engage with audiences and tell the story behind the headlines in multiple media and on multiple platforms.

From 2009-2010, he was the digital research editor at The Guardian where he focused on evaluating and adapting digital innovations to support The Guardian’s world-class journalism. He joined The Guardian in September 2006 as their first blogs editor after 8 years with the BBC working across the web, television and radio. He joined the BBC in 1998 to become their first online journalist outside of the UK, working as the Washington correspondent for

And, yes, he’s married to Suw.

E-mail Kevin.

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Interview series:
at the FASTforward blog. Amongst them: John Hagel, David Weinberger, JP Rangaswami, Don Tapscott, and many more!

Corante Blog

Friday, May 19th, 2006

Xtech 2006: Mikel Maron - GeoRSS

Posted by Suw Charman-Anderson

90% of information has a spatial component. Needed to agree a format.

Definitive history of RSS

- Syndicus Geographum - ancient Greek treaty for sharing of maps between city states

- blogmapper/rdfmapper - 2002, specifying locations in weblog posts, little map with red dots

- w3c rdfig geo vocabulary - 2003, came up with simple vocab on irc and published a doc, and this is the basis of geocoding RDF and RSS

- geowanking - May 2003, on this discussion list GeoRSS first uttered

- World as a Blog/WorldKit - realtime weblog geo info nabbing tools, World as a Blog looks at geotags in real time then plots them on a map so you can see who’s up too late.

- USGS 2004, started their Earthquake Alerts Feed.

- Yahoo! maps supports georss 2005

Lots has happened. Google released GoogleMaps, and shook everyone up with an amazing resource of map data, and released an API. Lots of map-based mash-ups.

OSGeo Foundation, Where 2.0, OpenStreetMap.

Format then only specified points, not lines or polygons. Alternatives were KML used by Google Earth, rich, similar to GML, but too complicated and tied to GoogleEarth so some stuff is more for 3d; GPX, XML interchange format for GPS data, but tied to its applicaton, extensible but not so useful; and GML, Open Geospacial Consortium, and useful for defining spatial geometries, so an XML version of a shape file, but quite complicated spec at over 500 pages, and a bit of confusion on how you use it because it’s not a schema its similar to RDF, so provides geometric objects for your own schema.

OGC got involved in GeoRSS because they wanted to help promote GML. So some of GeoRSS is drawn from GML. Two types of GeoRSS: Simple and GML. Simple is a compressed version of GML. Neutral regading feed type, e.g. RSS1.0/RDF, RSS2.0, Atom.

Looking for potential to create a Microformat.

[Now goes into some detail re the spec which I'm not going to try to reproduce].

EC JRC Tsunami Simulator. Subscribed to USGS earthquake feed, ran tsunami model, and dependent on outcome, they would sent out an alter. Also had RSS feed. Produce maps of possible tsunami.

Supported by, or about to be supported by:

- Platial

- Tagzania

- Ning

- Wayfairing, Plazes

Commercial support

- MSFT announced intention

- Yahoo! (Upcoming, Weather, Traffic, Flickr may potentially use it, and Maps API

- Ning

- CadCorp


- OGC member


- Acme GeoRSS


And other stuff

- Feed validator

- Wordpress Plugin in the works

- Weblog

- A press release

- Feed icon






Mapufacture, create and position a map, select georss feeds and put them together in a map. Then can do keyword searches and location searches. Being able to aggregate them together is very useful. Rails app. E.g. several weather feeds, added to a map and then when you click on the pointer on the map, the content shows up.

Social maps, e.g. places tagged as restaurants in Platial and Tagzania on one simple maps.

Can search, and navigate the map to show the area you’re interested in, then it searches the feeds and grabs everything in that location. All search results produce a GeoRSS feed which you can then reuse.

Odds and ends

- mobile device potential, sharing info about where you are

- sensors, could be used for publishing sensor data

- GIS Time Navigation, where you navigate through space and see things happening in time, e.g. a feed of events in Amsterdam which provided you with a calendar and location.

- RSS to GeoRSS converter, taking RSS, geocode place names and produce GeoRSS

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One Response to “Xtech 2006: Mikel Maron - GeoRSS”

  1. Kevin Marks Says:

    There is an existing Geo microformat for a single point, which is derived from hCard:
    At the Where 2.0 Conference in Sf we have a Microformats BoF organised to discuss a directions microformat: