Yahoo Fire Eagle Geo-Location Service Goes Public

After much anticipation since its private beta release in March, Yahoo! has made Fire Eagle publicly available. Fire Eagle is an open geo-location Platform that allows users to broadcast their geographic location to the Web while at the same time giving the the ability to easily control how and on which sites location data is shared (more at our Fire Eagle API profile).

Yahoo!'s Tom Coates made the announcement at the Brickhouse office and informally via Twitter. Described as a geographic location broker, Fire Eagle itself is a service rather than a product. After signing up for Fire Eagle with a Yahoo! account, users can update their location at a variety of scales (street level, city, postal code, state, etc.) via the Fire Eagle web site or using third party applications.

The Fire Eagle web site has an application gallery that showcases some of the more than 50 applications that have integrated Fire Eagle using the Fire Eagle API, including Dopplr, Pownce, BrightKite, and Lightpole. We currently have some initial Fire Eagle mashups listed in our Mashup Directory, although we expect that now with the public release that number will grow quickly as more developers will get their hands on the Fire Eagle API.

Developers are encouraged to check out Fire Eagle developer section, which includes PHP and Python walkthrus, as well as # C#/.NET, JavaScript, PHP, Perl, Python, and Ruby API kits. Note that OAuth is used as the preferred Authentication/authorization protocol.

ReadWriteWeb, Search Engine Land, Mashable, and TechCrunch have additional coverage of the release.

Note that if you will be in the Bay Area on Thursday the 14th you should stop by the Fire Eagle Launch Party Happy Hour from 6:00-9:00 p.m.

Be sure to read the next Mapping article: Create Flash Map Mashups with UMap