FireEagle

I’ve been dabbling with Yahoo!’s new location service FireEagle. Well, when I say “dabbling” I really mean “looking at it and thinking that I should really get round to trying to write something that uses it”. All I’ve actually been doing is updating it (when I remember) to tell it that I’m at home or at work.

The key point there is “when I remember”. A location service is no use at all if it isn’t accurate. And, currently, my FireEagle location has about a 50% chance of being accurate as after the first few days of excitement I soon get bored of keeping it up date. I expect there will be applications that keep it updated in real time using information about which cell your mobile phone is connected to – but those are still in the future.

So I even knew exactly what my first application was going to be. I was going to write a command line application for setting your location which I could set up as a regular job to run twice a day and tell FireEagle when I was going to work and when I was coming home. Of course, that still wouldn’t be accurate all of the time, but it would be better than the current situation.

I was going to write it over last weekend. But I got too caught up in other things. And this morning I found that I no longer needed to write it. That nice Mr. Wistow had released a Net::FireEagle module to CPAN and it included a simple command line program for querying and setting your location.

So now I have what I wanted. FireEagle currently knows that I’m at home. And at 8am tomorrow morning (assuming everything works) it will automatically be updated to know that I’m at work. And at 5:30pm it should get updated again to know that I’m at home. If I wanted to be really clever I could time a few journeys in each direction and make it update at approximately the time I pass each tube station on the way. Perhaps that might be seen as overkill.

So the lazyweb triumphs again. By not doing something when I planned to do it, I’ve managed to not have to do it at all. It’s a procrasinator’s dream.

Of course, now I need to thing of something else to write using FireEagle.

Oh, and by the way, I have a few FireEagle invitations left over. If you’re interested in playing with FireEagle, then email me.

Update: Ooh. It worked this morning.

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