April 15, 2011 – Fwix’s founder recently spoke about the challenges the company has faced in location development, and their solutions to those challenges.

O’Reilly Radar brought this topic to our attention in their article, “3 big challenges in location development,” for which the author has interviewed Darian Shirazi, Fwix founder and Where 2.0 speaker.

According to Shirazi, there are three really big challenges in location development. Listed in ascending order of difficulty, the easiest is getting accurate real-time information around locations; the large amount of data makes it difficult to do any real-time crawling. The second problem is building a places taxonomy to match against. Due to the detail variations and aliases, it is challenging to identify specific businesses against a taxonomy.

He lists the most difficult problem as entity extraction – taking a news article and figuring out what locations it mentions or what locations it’s about. This requires a linguistics understanding and semantic technology to understand implied meaning.

It is interesting to read how they approached the challenges and about their solutions. I’ll let you read the entire article yourself.

Melody K. Smith