The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC(R)) announces the formation of an Open GeoSMS Standards Working Group (SWG) (http://www.opengeospatial.org/projects/groups/geosmsswg). The Open GeoSMS SWG will advance the OGC Candidate Open GeoSMS Standard as an OGC adopted standard. The GeoSMS candidate standard is currently an OGC “Discussion Paper”.

SMS text messages had an increased importance during the support of emergency cases in the Haiti Earthquake. Using the Ushahidi platform where people could submit messages indicating emergency situations by SMS text messages.

The candidate Open GeoSMS standard defines a short messaging service (SMS) encoding to exchange lightweight location information between different mobile devices or applications. Currently such devices or applications are often unable to share location information with each other because of technical incompatibilities between systems used by different device and platform vendors. This causes problems for users and imposes obstacles to industry growth. The GeoSMS encoding for location is compatible with other OGC standards, such as those for sensor webs and earth imaging. It is also compatible with standards such as the OASIS Common Alerting Protocol (CAP) standard and the IETF RFC Presence Information Data Format Location Object (PIDF-LO). The OGC works with OASIS, IETF and many other standards development organizations to make geospatial information and services an integral and fluid part of the world’s information infrastructure.

The OGC is an international consortium of more than 395 companies, government agencies, research organizations, and universities participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available geospatial standards. OGC Standards support interoperable solutions that “geo-enable” the Web, wireless and location-based services, and mainstream IT. OGC Standards empower technology developers to make geospatial information and services accessible and useful with any application that needs to be geospatially enabled. Visit the OGC website at http://www.opengeospatial.org.

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About fjbehr

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Franz-Josef Behr, Professor of Geoinformatics at Stuttgart University of Applied Sciences (http://www.gis-management.de/). His specializations include * Internet, Internet GIS * XML, GML, SVG * Data exchange and Interoperability * Visualization * Open Source Solutions * Consulting Member of the DIN working group NA 005-03-03 AA "Arbeitsausschuss Kartographie und Geoinformation" (Sp CEN/TC 287+ISO/TC 211). He is the author of two authoritative books on GIS in German, one is "Strategisches GIS-Management", published by Wichmann Verlag (2004). The second is "Einführung in Geographische Informationssysteme" (1997).

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