The awareness of position, of where you are, is becoming the unifying technology that is bringing incredible convergance of capabilities and functionality. The awareness of Latitude and Longitude, the ability made possible by what is truly ubiquitous GPS technology, is making other technological leaps possible. Take for instance applications which let you now what building you may be looking at while travelling. You may snap a picture of the building using your location aware smartphone – and seconds later, it is identified from publically available sources, and an overlay of information is presented about the building, architectural history and so on. This application exists today, by the way. What’s enabling the capability? It is not pattern recognition of the photo, that technology and the ability to perform that analysis against an unfiltered database of patterns across the globe is still computationally un-feasible. What enables the capability is GPS (or any other location awareness technology), the ability to know within a few feet or meters of where you are and using that filter to link to anything and everything that, being geo-tagged, is relevant to your location. Now I can give you information about everything around you and keep you updated as you walk or drive, as long as the data is geo aware.
So what? I now think twice before buying anything and ask the question – would this be better if it were location aware? My smartphone has to be, so should my camera and video recorder (if they are separate from my smartphone). My car? Absolutely. My PC, it better be. My shoes?