Your Virtual Visit to Groundspeak HQ


first_imgBy: Sara (gonzogrrl)Every Friday at 2pm, geocachers come from as far away as China and as close as the neighboring office complex to visit Groundspeak Headquarters. No matter where they come from, they have two things in common before they arrive:  an enormous love of Geocaching and a story they can’t wait to tell.Groundspeak momentarily transforms from the busy buzz of Lackeys keeping the website running into a lobby full of cachers squealing with delight as they drop Trackables, trade stories and hang out with other geo-addicts from all over the world.Sara and NicoleAlong with Nicole (Louie Bliss), a fellow Community Relations team member, I’m Sara (gonzogrrl) one of the lucky Lackeys who gets to be there each time, greeting cachers as they find the epic HQ cache, GCK25B. “So…what do you do here?” cachers often ask us. By day, we’re the ones answering emails and phone calls, helping people solve issues so they have the best geocaching experience. But when geocachers drop in, we stop what we’re doing and spend time with them as they discovering the cache, take photos in the photobooth, buy souvenirs and check out the big screen map of geocaches being logged in real time all over the world.If you ever want to drop in, it’s easy to get an appointment. Just email us at [email protected] Tell us a little about yourself, where you’re coming from, and when you can visit and we’ll be happy to send you the coordinates to the office (hint:  we’re not in the middle of Lake Union. Shocking, I know). Since we are a busy office, we like to schedule visits on Fridays at 2pm. Sometimes one of the Founders and other Lackeys drop by to visit too—we all love meeting the people that make this game more than Tupperware in the woods!Sole Seeker’s photo inside the Groundspeak photoboothI’ve met so many different cachers, but I can still remember some of my favorite stories from the visits. There’s Sole Seeker, who came here for his 10,000th find, and was surprised to find we’d made him a sign and blown up balloons to celebrate with him. There’s also J&J Brown, who told us about the huge camouflaged cache they have hidden in their front yard that fools seekers every time because it (spoiler alert) looks just like a tree. And then there’s foomanjoo, a world-traveling photographer who had just done some caching in Korea and was off to his next adventure finding caches along Route 66 in California.But whomever you are—whether the HQ is your fifth find or your 5,000th—we welcome you at the lilypad. We hope you come see us soon! Share with your Friends:More SharePrint RelatedThe Lackey Geocoin: An Unexpected 26,000-mile, 5-Year JourneyJanuary 21, 2015In “Community”Announcing the January Featured Geocacher of the MonthFebruary 10, 2012In “Community”The West Bend $1000 Cache Ba$h 2011 – A Lackey Report from WisconsinAugust 22, 2011In “Community”last_img read more

Google Buzz: The Mainstream’s Geo-Social Network?


first_img8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Buzz’s Advantage: It Already has the UsersNow, however, Google is releasing a product to millions of people that makes geolocation a major focus of the service. Already, you can bring up the Google Maps layer and find buzz messages in virtually every location. This quick adoption makes sense, given that Google is putting the colorful Buzz logo in a prominent place on its mobile interface. The Google Buzz mobile site also makes it very easy to see messages from nearby users (including those you don’t follow). The “nearby” button is very prominent and takes you right to a list of nearby messages, which feels a bit like BlockChalk (though without the anonymity of that service). Thanks to this, you can even get good use out of the service if none of your friends are Gmail users. You can, for example, just ask a Twitter-like question that’s related to your location (“Where can I find good pizza around here?”) and anybody on Buzz can see your message and post an answer.Worries about Privacy.By default, location sharing is turned on in Buzz, which raises concerns about privacy. Just today, as the European Union celebrates “Internet Safety Day,” the E.U. warned users to turn off geolocation services whenever possible. Clearly, we do feel a lot more comfortable with sharing what we had for lunch than where we are right now. It would be nice, though, if Google allowed users to easily control the precision of this location data. A lot of people would be very comfortable with sharing what city they are in, for example, but don’t necessarily want to disclose the exact coffee shop they are sitting in right now. On the other hand, that would also dilute the value of the information and it looks like Google opted to go for precise locations that are couple to Place Pages for this exact reason. Geolocation: The Killer Feature for BuzzBy connecting Buzz to Google Maps Place Pages and by having a huge built-in user base, Google will be able to deliver a better location-aware social networking experience than any of its competitors. The question, of course, is if users are actually looking for this. The early reactions to Buzz are mostly positive, but we still have to wait and see if this will be another failed attempt by Google to create a social networking service, or if the tight Gmail integrations and Google’s aggressive push to put Buzz front and center on its mobile services will be enough to convince users to use Buzz regularly. Tags:#news#NYT#web frederic lardinois Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Related Posts Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Google Buzz could quickly become the most popular location-based service on the Internet. Not only does Buzz integrate itself into Gmail, which will give it a large mainstream user base, but Buzz also puts geolocation front and center on its mobile sites. In addition, the new Buzz layer in the Google Maps mobile interface makes it incredibly easy to find geotagged Buzz messages around you. Nobody is Geotagging Tweets – So Can Buzz Geolocation Succeed?Twitter introduced its own geolocation API in August 2009, but while we were very excited about the possible applications of this API, very few users and developers actually use it today. While location-based apps and services like Foursquare and Gowalla (which launched its own API today) have quickly grown in popularity, only 0.23% tweets currently include location data. Unlike Buzz, however, neither Twitter itself nor any of the popular Twitter client really put geolocation at the center of their applications.ReadWriteWeb’s full coverage and analysis of Google Buzz:Live Blog From AnnouncementAnalysis: Open Data StandardsAnalysis: Geo-Social NetworkFacebook & Google BuzzComparison to FriendFeedEnterprise ApplicationsBuzz Hacks & TipsThe Missing FeaturesGoogle Makes Changes to Buzzlast_img read more