Ever since my experiments with Nokia Chat and XMPP I’ve had the picture in my mind of an XMPP-driven robot that would accept geographic locations from Nokia Chat and respond with a list of nearby Plazes. This, after all, is the promise of the “location-based future,” is it not?
Tonight I managed to hack something together in PHP, running on my MacBook. You can try it out if you like: you’ll need Nokia Chat running on a GPS-enabled device. Here’s what you need to do.
First, start up Nokia Chat and select Options \| Add Friend:
Add user email@example.com as your new friend:
If everything goes according to plan — my robot hasn’t imploded and is still running — you should automatically receive back a welcome message:
Next, select Options \| Send \| My location (this will only appear if your GPS receiver is running, and your device knows its location already):
You’ll receive back an acknowledgement with instructions to send a keyword to look up Plazes:
Enter a keyword — in this example I entered bar, but you can enter a Plazes category, or, indeed, anything that you can normally enter in a Plazes.com search. After a brief delay you should receive back a list of the three Plazes nearest your current location that match your search:
If you move up and click on the Open link under any of the Plazes, and you have Nokia Maps installed, the location will appear on a map:
At this point you can add it as a new Landmark, or you can click Exit to go back to Nokia Chat and continue your exploring.
This is a two-hours-old alpha robot, so it’s likely prone to breakage or other weirdness; please bear with me.
This isn’t an official Plazes or Nokia project; it’s just me doing some weekend hacking.