Seems like everywhere I turn around these days, Skyhook Wireless is getting their service into a new product. They’re the company that has a database with a large number, as in tens of millions, of WiFi location points. Calling their service WPS for "Wi-Fi Positioning System", Skyhook offers location information based on their vast collection of WiFi data. Think of it similar to cellular triangulation which uses local cell-phone towers to give you a rough estimate of your handset’s location. It’s used for phone location services and geo-tagging photos with an Eye-Fi SD camera card to name a few applications.
So what does Skyhook Wireless have its "hooks" into now? Laptop Cop, oft confused with its less mobile cousin, Desktop Cop. OK, not really. Laptop Cop from Awareness Technologies provides laptop protection in case your device is lost or stolen. You can retrieve files from your missing notebook, show the contents of your far-away hard drive and even remotely wipe files that you don’t want found from prying eyes. Laptop Cop runs quietly hidden so any would-be notebook thief won’t realize it’s there. Besides, you can geo-locate your lappy and might even get it back with Laptop Cop, although I wouldn’t go after it myself. I’d call the real cops and provide the location info to them. Sorry, too many C.S.I. episodes have spooked me away from a do-yourself crime fighter career.
At $50 for 1 to 10 licenses, Laptop Cop might cater more to the enterprise since there are volume discounts for larger quantities. Still, if you travel a bunch and would be lost without your notebook and accompanying data, the price might right.