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INTERNET-DRAFT                                     Vancouver Webpages
<draft-daviel-html-geo-tag-01.txt>      June 1999 (Expires Jan. 2000)

               Geographic registration of HTML documents

Status of this Memo

   This document is an Internet-Draft and is in full conformance with
   all provisions of Section 10 of RFC2026.

   This document is an Internet-Draft.  Internet-Drafts are working
   documents of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), its areas,
   and its working groups.  Note that other groups may also distribute
   working documents as Internet-Drafts.

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Abstract

   This memo describes a method of registering HTML documents with a
   specific geographic location through means of embedded META tags. The
   content of the META tags gives the geographic position of the
   resource described by the HTML document in terms of Longitude,
   Latitude and optionally Elevation in a simple, machine-readable
   manner. This information may be used for automated resource discovery
   by means of an HTML indexing agent or search engine.

1.  Introduction

   Many resources described by HTML documents on the World-Wide-Web are
   associated with a particular place on the Earth's surface.  While
   resource discovery on the Web has thus far focussed on document title
   and open-text keyword searching, in these cases it may be beneficial
   to facilitate geographic searching. Examples of this kind of resource
   include pages describing  restaurants, shipwrecks, wildlife refuges
   etc.

2.  Coordinate Systems

A.Daviel                                                        [Page 1]


<draft-daviel-html-geo-tag-01.txt>         June 1999 (Expires Jan. 2000)

   Resource positions on the Earth's surface should be expressed in
   degrees North of Latitude, degrees East of Longitude as signed
   decimal numbers, separated by a semicolon. The number of decimal
   places given should reflect the precision of the coordinates, with
   zeroes being used as placeholders.  A decimal point is optional where
   the precision is less than one degree. Where the precision of the
   coordinates is such that the datum used is significant, typically
   more precise than one kilometre distance, positions should be
   converted to the WGS 84 datum [3].   Positions given by a GPS set [4]
   with datum set to "WGS 84" will in most cases be adequate, of the
   order of 200 metres accuracy.

   Note: The ordering of coordinates has changed from revison 00 of this
   Draft in order to harmonize with RFC 2426, RFC 2445 (vCard and iCal
   specifications) [6][7]. This is at variance with common GIS practice,
   but better matches the intended audience of this Draft.

3.  Implementation

   HTML markup should be added to the document in the form of a META
   statement. This should be placed in the document head in accordance
   with the HTML 4 specification [1].  The identifier "geo.position" is
   used for  Latitude and Longitude data.  The identifier
   "geo.placename" is used for a free text representation of the
   position, for example "city, province" or "town, county, state". The
   identifier "geo.country" is used for the 2-character country code
   from ISO 3166 [5]. The identifier "geo.region" is used for a regional
   code within a particular country, drawn from a controlled list.
   Suitable controlled lists [8][9] exist for the United States and
   Canada; others may be adopted in due course.

   It is anticipated that the "geo.placename" tag be used for resource
   recognition, rather than resource discovery, due to possible
   ambiguities in naming convention, language, word ordering and
   placename duplicates.

   Although the HTML specification [1] states that the name field is in
   general case-sensitive, these "geo" tags should be recognized by
   compliant agents regardless of case.  Coordinates should be ordered
   (Latitude ; Longitude)

   4. Examples

     <META NAME="geo.position" content="48.54;-123.84">

   describes a resource at position 48.54 degrees North, 123.84 degrees
   West, while

A.Daviel                                                        [Page 2]


<draft-daviel-html-geo-tag-01.txt>         June 1999 (Expires Jan. 2000)

     <META NAME="geo.position" content="-10;60">

   describes a resource at position 10 degrees South, 60 degrees West.

     <META NAME="geo.placename" content="London, Ont">
     <META NAME="geo.region" content="on">
     <META NAME="geo.country" content="ca">

   describes a resource in London, Ontario, Canada while

     <META NAME="geo.placename" content="London">
     <META NAME="geo.country" content="gb">

   describes a resource in London, England (Great Britain).

5.  Applicability

   As stated in the introduction, certain HTML documents may be
   associated with a geographic position, while other documents are not.
   For proper use of the "geo" tags as described in this draft, the
   resource described in an HTML document should be associated with a
   particular location for the lifetime of the document.  The tags may
   be properly used to describe, for instance, a retail store, a
   mountain peak or a railway station but not an oil company, river,
   aircraft or mathematical theory.

   The geographic position given is associated with the resource
   described by the HTML document, not with the physical location of the
   document [2], or the location of the company responsible for
   publishing or hosting the document. Thus, in some cases the country
   code used in "geo.position" may differ from the country code forming
   part of the host address in the document URL.

6.  Further information

   Further information may be obtained at http://geotags.com

7.  Security Considerations

   This draft raises no security issues.

8.  References

   [1]  Raggett, Le Hors, Jacobs, "HTML 4.0 Specification",
        http://www.w3.org/TR/1998/REC-html40-19980424, W3C, April 1998

A.Daviel                                                        [Page 3]


<draft-daviel-html-geo-tag-01.txt>         June 1999 (Expires Jan. 2000)

   [2]  Davis et al., "A Means for Expressing Location Information in
        the Domain Name System", RFC 1876, January 1996

   [3]  United States Department of Defense; DoD WGS-1984 - Its
        Definition and Relationships with Local Geodetic Systems;
        Washington, D.C.; 1985; Report AD-A188 815 DMA; 6127; 7-R-
        138-R; CV, KV;

   [4]  ARINC Research Corporation, "Navstar GPS Space Segment /
        Navigation User Interfaces", IRN-200C-002, September 1997

   [5]  International Organization For Standardization / Organisation
        Internationale De Normalisation (ISO), "Standard ISO 3166-1988:
        Codes for the Representation of Names of Countries", 1988.

   [6]  Dawson & Stenerson, Internet Calendaring and Scheduling Core
        Object Specification (iCalendar), RFC 2445, November 1998

   [7]  Dawson & Howes, vCard MIME Directory Profile, RFC 2426,
        September 1998

   [8]  United States Postal Service, Official Abbreviations -
        States and Possessions,
        http://www.usps.gov/ncsc/lookups/abbr_state.txt

   [9]  Canada Post, the Postal Code, two-letter abbreviations,
        http://www.mailposte.ca/CPC2/addrm/pclookup/pcinfo.html

9.  Author's Address

   Andrew Daviel
   Vancouver Webpages, Box 357
   185-9040 Blundell Rd
   Richmond BC
   V6Y 1K3
   Canada

   Tel. (604)-377-4796
   Fax. (604)-270-8285
   mailto:andrew@vancouver-webpages.com

A.Daviel                                                        [Page 4]


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