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Geolocation Working Group Overview

The mission of the Geolocation Working Group, part of the Ubiquitous Web Applications Activity, is to define a secure and privacy-sensitive interface for using client-side location information in location-aware Web applications. The Working Group meets weekly by phone and has three to four Face-to-Face meetings per year.


The Geolocation Working Group Charter details what the W3C has tasked this Working Group to do.

Members should join the Geolocation Working Group.


Note: This table will be updated periodically as the Working Group identifies new milestones.
Specification FPWD LC CR PR Rec
Geolocation Interface Q4 2008 Q1 2009 Q3 2010 Q2 2011 Q4 2011
DeviceOrientation Event Specification Q2 2011 Q3 2011 Q4 2011 Q1 2012 Q1 2012

Publications and Drafts

The Geolocation Working Group published the Candidate Recommendation Working Draft of the Geolocation API on 07 September 2010:

Geolocation API Specification
Candidate Recommendation, 07 September 2010

Ongoing work is reflected in the public editor's draft:

Geolocation API Specification
Editor's Working Draft

A preliminary test suite is also available:

Geolocation API Test Suite

In addition, the WG has been working on the following Editor's Drafts:

DeviceOrientation Event Specification
Geolocation API Level 2

How to Participate

Members should join the Geolocation Working Group, but we do our work in the public, mainly on the mailing lists.

The main mailing list for the Geolocation Working Group is: public-geolocation@w3.org. This list is open to the public and also has a public archive. To subscribe or unsubscribe please send mail to public-geolocation-request@w3.org with a subject line of subscribe or unsubscribe.

There is also an IRC channel dedicated to the Geolocation Working Group: #geolocation on the W3C IRC server: irc.w3.org:6665

In addition there is a member-only mailing list at member-geolocation@w3.org for administrative purposes. This list also has a member-only archive.

The Working Group maintains a Wiki with links to minutes from Face-to-Face meetings and teleconferences. In addition the group uses Tracker to maintain issue and action item lists.

Relationship with Other W3C Work

As listed in the Geolocation Working Group Charter, it is expected that we will be interacting with the following W3C Working Groups.

Mobile Web Initiative Best Practices Working Group
The Mobile Web Initiative Best Practices Working Group is responsible for developing best practices for the Web that support an appropriate user experience on mobile devices. It is expected that these experiences would benefit from a standardized Geolocation interface.
Web Applications Working Group
The Web Applications Working Group is responsible for core Web APIs, and thus may provide valuable feedback on our documents. We also expect an overlap in members with this WG.
Internationalization Core Working Group
There are a number of internationalization issues that we expect might need review and addressing.
Web Security Context Working Group
The Web Security Context Working Group establishes practices for secure and usable information on the Web. Given the privacy and security concerns around location information, the Geolocation Working Group will be requesting feedback from the Web Security Context Working Group on a regular basis.
Hypertext Coordination Group
The Geolocation Working Group will participate in the Hypertext Coordination Group.
Web Accessibility Initiative
The Geolocation Working Group expects to work directly with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) Working Group to ensure that any accessibility implications inherent to this work have been taken into account and addressed.
Semantic Web Interest Group
The Semantic Web Interest Group (SWIG) developed a Basic Geo Vocabulary, which was ultimately handed over to Geospatial Incubator Group.

Lars Erik Bolstad, Co-Chair, Opera Software
Matt Womer <mdw@w3.org>, Team Contact, W3C

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