My post the other day about GPS in Leopard (I’m hoping, ok?) received a comment asking why it would be advantageous for Apple hardware to come equipped with GPS. To be fair, maybe it’s more useful for the MacBook line, but I think there are uses for it in desktop systems as well – maybe make it an option for these models…?
With GPS built into the hardware, and an operating system aware of this capability, you’ve got potential for adding location-aware metadata to files and applications. Say you created a document while you were here in Denver last year, but you can’t remember where you filed it or what it was called. Search Spotlight based on coordinates – or maybe a plugin that translates coordinates to cities – or altitude (because Denver’s 5280ft above sea level) and find a listing of the files you created while here.
Maybe you’re really into traveling and photography and you want to geotag your photos. With GPS built into the machine your photos would immediately be given the GPS location data in their metadata details. Then with some slick coding you could have an app that read that GPS metadata and posted your images with geotag information and you wouldn’t have to do anything else.
So those are the less obvious uses I suppose. But with the ingenuity of the Mac [developer] community, I doubt it would take any time at all for a handful of cool location-aware applications began popping-up.
On the obvious side, there’s mapping and directional uses like Google Maps, but on the go. Have a look at TUAW’s post just today about GPS software for the Mac. I think there’s a lot of possibility in a move of this nature. And as a bona fide Geek, I would be thoroughly excited at the prospect of this announcement, should we actually hear something about it at MacWorld next week.