Expose GeoLocation to workers #745

Closed
joemarini opened this Issue Sep 4, 2015 · 38 comments

Projects

None yet
@joemarini

Scenario: SW receives a push event, and my handler wants to check the current geolocation so I can warn the user about a potential nasty weather issue in their area.

@mvano
mvano commented Sep 8, 2015

How do you think the privacy and security aspects of this should be handled? It's not trivial to permit precise background location tracking.

@joemarini

Agreed - filed this at AlexR's request, they will work these out in spec.

@mkruisselbrink
Collaborator

It doesn't sound like you need the actual current geolocation for that usecase? You just want to know if the user is in a specific area, so adding a geofence should be enough for that, at least as it is currently specced. That still has the privacy and security aspects of course. We haven't quite worked out yet what should and shouldn't be allowed with respect to registering geofences from a service worker while there are no clients currently shown.
Also maybe the list of potential areas is too big to actually register geofences for all of them, so I agree that having a way to get the current position from a service worker could indeed be valuable. I'm not convinced that having a way to watch the current position is something that we want to expose to service workers though. Certainly not if that would mean constantly waking up/keeping up the service worker while somebodies device is moving... There are of course usecases for background location tracking, but I think some kind of API where chrome does the tracking and only passes on a complete track would be a much better API for service workers.

@joemarini

The use case that the travel partner gave me was "user gets on a plane in Vancouver, checks weather. Puts phone away. Flies to Boston, gets weather alert for storm in Boston, not Vancouver." Also, if the user is driving across the country or state, it wouldn't be practical to pre-set a geofence for the whole way.

It seems like if this was properly badged in the UI and the user knew it was happening, it could be made more secure.

@mvano
mvano commented Sep 15, 2015

Where would one badge this in the UI? The API would run in a service worker in the background, so the badge would be the only UI surface. Especially on mobile, screen space is limited. A permanent indicator like a notification might be too much. A tiny icon in the status bar (that cannot be interacted with and has no text) might be too little.

A list of possible UI requirements might be:

  • The user can understand what it means
  • It is discoverable
  • It is not too distracting from other activities
  • Attribution: it indicates which origin is using the API
  • Permission revocation: the user has a path from the indicator to revoke the permission
  • Battery blame (how much was used by this API)
  • Does this UI pattern scale to work with other APIs? What if there's a dozen of them?

I don't want to solve the UX in this thread, but I do want to point out that this is tricky. It might not be worth the trouble unless we find more common use cases.

@ManuelB
ManuelB commented Oct 17, 2015

Hi,
I am working in the agriculture business. During a crop season it is necessary for all the farmers taking part in a harvesting task to see each other on a map to be able to join somebody who isn't done yet with his field. Harvester and transporter are working closely together.

Further the traces are used afterwards to generate precise work logs to see where the harvester have been and how long it took to harvest a particular field. Traces are also used to make sure that chemicals are only used on the allowed field.

There are already multiple native solutions to solve these problem but it would be awesome if this can be solved using a native API.

So technically what I need is an API that I can tell that it should send reliable message with the position of the device to a given URL for a certain timeframe. If the device is offline it will collect the message and the next time it is online if will send all messages in the queue. The message should expire after a given time.

When the browser asks to do this tracking the user should be asked if he wants to allow the particular website to track his position for a certain period of time.

Hope that use case helps to enhance the APIs.

/Manuel

@mkruisselbrink
Collaborator

The use case that the travel partner gave me was "user gets on a plane in Vancouver, checks weather. Puts phone away. Flies to Boston, gets weather alert for storm in Boston, not Vancouver." Also, if the user is driving across the country or state, it wouldn't be practical to pre-set a geofence for the whole way.

I do fully agree that "Get the current location" might be something we should let service workers do, but to solve that particular use case with geofencing you'd set a geofence for the current location, with some reasonable radius, which would then wake up the service worker when the user has moved that far away.

@mkruisselbrink
Collaborator

I'm not quite planning to actively work on any of this (other than the geofencing API I'm working on), and the UI issues are definitely non-trivial to solve, but I started trying to write down some of my thoughts on what the space of use cases for "geolocation in service workers" looks like, and what kind of APIs might work to address which use cases. That (not very well thought out) attempt can be found here.

@jakearchibald
Collaborator

The fitness tracking case (and I think @ManuelB's case) can be solved using standard pages, perhaps with the addition of some kind of "pinning" API that keeps the page alive.

This doesn't solve @joemarini's case though. @joemarini: why is the location check triggered by a push message?

@ManuelB
ManuelB commented Oct 20, 2015

@jakearchibald I agree the important point is that I need to run a background task. We already build prototypes using WebSockets and watchPosition that worked well but the problem is as soon as the browser is suspended, closed or somebody calls the action is interrupted.

@annevk annevk added this to the Version 2 milestone Oct 27, 2015
@RichardMaher

@ManuelB I fully acknowledge and accept your business requirements and use case.

Here is a similar one for you. I have students on Campus who want to see who from their coffee-club or study-group is on Campus. If there waiting for someone they want to receive a notification when the arrive. GeoLocation.watchPosition must be empowered to re-instantiate a SW that has been terminated.

The SW will interrogate the location change event before XHRing the information to a central server. It is the server that decides which GeoFences have been traveresed and, if so, which users need to receive a Notification.

Privacy and Security is handled as usual by the manifest triggering user approval at installation time. The individual Web App with also ask for tracking-permission when the user accepts individual group membership.

Please also see my comments in this thread: -
https://github.com/w3c/geofencing-api/issues/25

@marcoscaceres
Member

@ManuelB I think what you want is the Wake Lock API... but with some additions we are yet to add to the spec: you could set a "CPU lock", which would keep the page alive, but would allow the screen to sleep (and maybe generate notifications as needed). Alternatively, you could keep the screen lock on - and just let the app run.

@RichardMaher

@marcoscaceres I think you are being too end-user/device centric. I'll wager 3 sheep-stations and an oil-rig that Manuel's harvester drivers don't look at the phone from one field to the next yet the Farmer wants to be able to load the page at anytime and see a real-time feed of where his harvesters are and if one is heading home while Fred still has half a field to head then he'll ring him up and let him know.

How about a trucking company wants a central head office PC constantly tracking truck movements in real-time.

Dominos Pizza want to let users see where their pizza van is. The van driver doesn't have to have his phone screen on killing his battery for Pete's sake.

SW developers are simply being obtuse if you continue to deny the requirements for location tracking and not just a hamstrung, debilitated geoFence API.

User's want to know more than "Elvis has left the building"!

@RichardMaher

@ManuelB Please be aware that, according to Mark (in the following Chrome bug report) Firefox, the Android Browser, Opera, and Safari already implement something akin to the CPU lock that Marco discusses: -
https://code.google.com/p/chromium/issues/detail?id=506435

I haven't tested Mark's claims which seem to be a complete alternative to Service Workers but FYI.

@ManuelB
ManuelB commented Feb 3, 2016

@marcoscaceres Thanks a lot I will look into it and report my findings.

@RichardMaher

I found this a useful layman's reference for hardware support of geofencing: -
http://gpsworld.com/putting-the-ultra-low-power-in-geofence/

Explains a lot to me especially about power consumption,

I maintain that the SW architecture, in combination with any Android support for position batching, that subsequently offloads geo-fence processing to a central server in order to determine alarm/other processing for ALL users, is a viable if not preferable alternative.

Whether or not a wake-lock or cpu-lock is a retrograde step in power consumption, its implementation and availability pays homage to the user's right to self-determination. Likewise the user should be empowered to authorize GPS tracking while the phone is off.

Surely a myopic cluster of GNSS ICs is a less than optimal solution for fleet management or social networking, and an instance of functionality-devolution gone too far? IMHO, other than for monitoring prisoners on probation, the current geofence solution is a textbook case of the tail wagging the dog.

A Service Worker should be able to subscribe to a PositionManager optionally specifying min distance and/or seconds between updates to the position. A positionChanged event will be sufficient to re-instantiate a terminated SW.

Below is how I throttle GeoLocation.watchPosition now: -

Tier3Toolbox.prototype.LocationThrottle = 

    function(initHndlr, moveHndlr, standHndlr, errorHndlr, userOptions)
    {
        if(!navigator.geolocation) {
            throw new Error("Unsupported browser - No Geolocation support");
        }

        if (arguments.length < 4) {
            throw new Error("Insufficient call arguments");
        }

        if (typeof initHndlr  != "function" ||
            typeof moveHndlr  != "function" || 
            typeof standHndlr != "function" ||
            typeof errorHndlr != "function") {
            throw new Error("The Init, Move, Stand, and Error handler parameters must be functions");
        }

        var lastPos, trackerId, loiterTimer, deltaMetres,
            recalibrateTimer, lastOptions, lastDrop, replayTimer
            ;

        var MAXSILENCE    = 30;
        var watchCount    = 1;
        var acceptCount   = 1;
        var lastUpdate    = 0;

        var initHndlr     = initHndlr;
        var moveHndlr     = moveHndlr;
        var standHndlr    = standHndlr;
        var errorHndlr    = errorHndlr;

        var options, defMaxSilence, timeDetent, spaceDetent,
            loiterDetent, maxLocAge, accurate, maxSilence, lastOptions
            ;

        function moveReplay()
        {
            replayTimer = null;

            if ((lastDrop.timestamp > lastPos.timestamp)) {
                lastDrop.timestamp = Date.now();
                filterLocation(lastDrop);
            }                       
        }

        function loiterLimit()
        {
            loiterTimer = null;
            standHndlr.call(null);
        }

        var recalibrate = 
            function()
            {
                if (window.console) console.log("recalibrating");

                recalibrateTimer = null;

                if (trackerId) navigator.geolocation.clearWatch(trackerId);

                getCurrent(initAcc);
            }

        var getCurrent = 
            function(success) 
            {
                navigator.geolocation.getCurrentPosition(success,locError,{
                            enableHighAccuracy: false,
                            maximumAge: Number.POSITIVE_INFINITY,
                            timeout: 10000
                        });                             
            }

        var initLoc = 
            function(position) 
            {
                lastPos = position;     
                initHndlr.call(null, position); 
            }

        var initAcc = 
            function(position) 
            {
                watchCount++;

                trackerId = navigator.geolocation.watchPosition(filterLocation, locError, {
                            enableHighAccuracy: accurate,
                            maximumAge: maxLocAge
                        });

                recalibrateTimer = setTimeout(recalibrate, maxSilence);                 
            }

        var start =
            function(userOptions)
            {
                parseOptions(userOptions);

                trackerId = navigator.geolocation.watchPosition(filterLocation, locError, {
                            enableHighAccuracy: accurate,
                            maximumAge: maxLocAge,
                            timeout: Number.POSITIVE_INFINITY
                        });

                loiterTimer = setTimeout(loiterLimit, loiterDetent);
                recalibrateTimer = setTimeout(recalibrate, maxSilence);
            }

        var parseOptions =
            function(userOptions)
            {
                options       = userOptions || lastOptions; 

                defMaxSilence = (("maxSilence"  in options) ? options.maxSilence        : MAXSILENCE    );
                timeDetent    = (("minSilence"  in options) ? options.minSilence        :             0 ) * 1000;
                spaceDetent   = (("minProgress" in options) ? options.minProgress       :             0 );
                loiterDetent  = (("maxSnail"    in options) ? options.maxSnail          : defMaxSilence ) * 1000;
                maxLocAge     = (("maxAge"      in options) ? options.maxAge            :             0 );
                if (maxLocAge != Number.POSITIVE_INFINITY) maxLocAge *= 1000;
                accurate      = (("accurate"    in options) ? options.accurate          : true          );
                maxSilence    = defMaxSilence * 1000;

                lastOptions   = options;
            }

        var locError = 
            function(error) 
            {
                errorHndlr.call(null, error);
            }

        var filterLocation = 
            function(position) 
            {
                if (!lastPos) return;

                watchCount++;

                if (position.timestamp <= lastPos.timestamp)
                    return;

                var currTime = Date.now();                  
                var dropping = false;

                if (((position.timestamp - lastPos.timestamp) < timeDetent) ||
                    ((currTime           - lastUpdate       ) < timeDetent)) {
                    dropping = true;
                } else {                            
                    clearTimeout(recalibrateTimer);
                    recalibrateTimer = setTimeout(recalibrate, maxSilence);
                }

                deltaMetres = Tier3Toolbox.calculateDistance(
                                position.coords.latitude,
                                position.coords.longitude,
                                lastPos.coords.latitude,
                                lastPos.coords.longitude)

                if (deltaMetres.toFixed() < spaceDetent) {
                    return;
                }

                if (dropping) {
                    lastDrop = position;
                    clearTimeout(replayTimer);
                    replayTimer = setTimeout(moveReplay, timeDetent);
                    return;
                }

                acceptCount++;
                lastPos = position;
                lastUpdate = currTime;

                clearTimeout(loiterTimer);
                loiterTimer = setTimeout(loiterLimit, loiterDetent);

                moveHndlr.call(null, position, deltaMetres);            
            }

        var stop = 
            function()
            {
                if (trackerId) navigator.geolocation.clearWatch(trackerId);

                clearTimeout(recalibrateTimer);
                clearTimeout(loiterTimer);
                clearTimeout(replayTimer);
            }

        parseOptions(userOptions);                                      
        getCurrent(initLoc);

        return {start : start, stop : stop};
    };
@martinthomson
Member

I hate to make this a point of jurisdiction, but I think that this is a discussion that needs to be had in the geolocation working group. Thanks to @RichardMaher for bringing it to their (and my) attention.

This is a topic that has come up in the past and I think that I myself proposed that a single request for location was a fine thing. We did discuss the subject at some length.

I'm very nervous when someone saves their hands when it comes to the privacy story. The web has thus far had a great accountability story and adding the ability to track someone when they aren't visiting your site is one capability that could easily undermine all the good work we've done. I'd want to see a clear plan for how a user is able to remain in control to be even remotely comfortable that watchPosition could be exposed.

@RichardMaher

@martinthomson

I hate to make this a point of jurisdiction, but I think that this is a discussion that needs to be had in the geolocation working group.

I've been careful to avoid any demarcation issues by always involving the Service Worker AND GeoLocation communities. My lobbying has centered on: -

Forums:
https://github.com/slightlyoff/ServiceWorker/issues/745
https://github.com/w3c/geofencing-api/issues/25

Mailing Lists:
public-webapps@w3.org
public-geolocation@w3.org

If there are better forums then please let me know.

Having said that, I am becoming more and more convinced that this is a Service Worker issue. The following is what I believe is required to make this work: -

ServiceWorkerRegistration.travelManager (getSubscription(), permissionState(), subscribe())
The subscribe() method with take options such as (minMsecs/metersl between position updates, accuracy, etc)

A new ServiceWorker "Travel" event will be created. The UserAgent must be able to re-instantiate a previously terminated ServiceWorker on the strength of this event.

One GeoLocation watcher per UserAgent sounds battery-friendly to me!

I'm very nervous when someone saves their hands when it comes to the privacy story. The web has thus far had a great accountability story and adding the ability to track someone when they aren't visiting your site is one capability that could easily undermine all the good work we've done. I'd want to see a clear plan for how a user is able to remain in control to be even remotely comfortable that watchPosition could be exposed.

God gave us valium and SSRIs for just such occasions. Either way please don't FUD a technical forum with tales of "There be dragons".

Users are running a WebApp and NOT "visiting your site". Permissions are there for just such a requirement. BTW I tested Firefox last night and it is the only browser that DOES continue to track you when the browser is in the background.

But can I ask where have you articulated your fears about WAKE-LOCK and CPU-LOCK back-dooring user-tracking functionality? What about the new GeoFence API? If I throw a 5m GeoFence around my current location and get a "leave" event then surely I can just drop that geofence and recreate another around my new current location. What is that if not user-tracking?

Most importantly, can I stress that this is a user REQUIREMENT and not an IMPOSITION! Ask all the permission questions you want but this simply has to happen.

@mkruisselbrink
Collaborator

@RichardMaher I totally agree with @martinthomson that none of this is really a service worker issue. All of what you describe is about features build on top of service workers, so the geolocation working group would most definitely be the correct location to actually pursue this.

Having said that, what you describe does sound very similar to parts of the API I sketched in #745 (comment) (and https://gist.github.com/mkruisselbrink/d0d38b38979a37778e71, or in a version not specifically about geolocation in w3c/sensors#73).

And yes, the new geofencing API has a lot of the same privacy and permission related problems as what you're describing. We haven't really figured out yet what to do about that (although a spec compliant implementation could not allow registering of new geofences from the background under certain circumstances, which would make adding a new geofence around the current location impossible).

@martinthomson
Member

I think that @RichardMaher forgets that sometimes browsers have to deal with sites that act poorly. Tracking the user in the background is highly likely to be a case of a site acting poorly. I want to ensure that the user remains in control; and I don't believe that asking users for permission is sufficient to that end for some types of features. This is one of them.

@RichardMaher

Look I %100 acknowledge the problem(s) @martinthomson highlights, and the need to prevent abuse from the black hats. All I’m saying is let’s work the problem rather than simply rocking in the foetal position, or worse, concocting artificial and exaggerated speed-humps on the release path of much needed functionality.

On the plus side: -

  1. User permission must be explicitly granted before GPS is accessible.
  2. While GPS is being watched, even in background, the circles/ripples icon cue is visible to user on the device.
  3. The underlying Service Worker architecture mandates the use of secure/authenticated httpS communication.
  4. The user can be 100% sure tracking is off by simply closing the browser on their device.

I personally think the above is enough, but for the sake of argument, does anyone have thoughts on how access may be further governed?

  1. Only permit background/service-worker GPS access if the Web App is installed/home-screened?
  2. If a single GPS permission will cover both background and foreground access, then put a link on the toast to the Faustian details?
  3. Use a new icon, perhaps an eye or a doughnutted version of the current GPS ripples? Pulse the icon?

Similar conundrums so that Service Worker GPS is not singled out unfairly: -

  1. Firefox currently continues to process watchPosition events in background
  2. All browsers except IE and Chrome continue to watchPosition when phone is locked but browser tab in foreground.
  3. The proposed WAKE-LOCK and CPU-LOCK will backdoor user-tracking
  4. The proposed GeoFence API, as it stands, will be another backdoor to user tracking
  5. Native Apps can do this with impunity
  6. Push Messages must be required to trigger a notification so as not to be silent/stealthy.
  7. Geofencing is still tracking! Knowing when my next victim leaves their house each Tuesday is still an intrusive invasion of one’s privacy if it has not been sanctioned. Surely the degree of “badness” is not the issue here?

Also, can I list just the proposed restrictions on the GeoFence API that I know about: -

  1. Maximum number of geofences
  2. Only circular geofences
  3. Maximum area of a geofence
  4. Minimum area of a geofence
  5. (Soon to be?) Cannot create a geofence in a service worker.
  6. Fat Client, heuristically-challenged, localized, geofence processing
  7. A technology born of a time when Java was king and batteries were the size of a brick and lasted just 2 hours.

Are these design smells not beginning to make people think twice?

Finally, to address some of Martin’s comments directly: -

Tracking the user in the background is highly likely to be a case of a site acting poorly.

Unsubstantiated, conjecture, hearsay, prejudice, and FUD :-(

A plethora of valid business cases and user-requirements have been portrayed for all who are willing to see. We must find a way to satisfy these legitimate requirements whilst fire-walling against malicious intent.

I want to ensure that the user remains in control;

Here we are in violent agreement! See the “plus side” above. How more empowered can the user be?

Look, I enforce my right to privacy more than most, I can assure you! I am not on FacePlant, LinkedIn, etc. I do not use my real photo on the net. I pay cash everywhere I can, and wish I could stop my card having Tap-n-Go. But @MulderAndScully I do not wear a tin-foil hat.

I don't believe that asking users for permission is sufficient to that end for some types of features. This is one of them.

Can you please give me example of one or two other features that you felt failed your test? How did you get on overturning the SpeechRecognition API and access to that microphone?

The Service Worker developers must love all their children equally! Just because the blue-eyed boy of GeoFencing turned out to be the milkman’s mongrel doesn’t mean that your GeoLocation Cinderella can’t go to the ball.

Let’s get on with it – please.

@RichardMaher

@joemarini

Scenario: SW receives a push event, and my handler wants to check the current geolocation so I can warn the user about a potential nasty weather issue in their area.

Exactly Joe! But can I ask why you have devolved the "am I in danger" geofence logic to the client? Why send them a message if you know (or should know) that it does not concern them?

Weather is transitory and localized. If you follow my and @mkruisselbrink 's recommendations then the server will know exactly who is in/out of the danger zone and therefore needs to be PUSHed.

Please allow me to offer alternative requirements:-

  1. University security have just been told there's a shooter on campus. They touch the google maps screen and tell the system to warn everyone in a 2km radius to get out or get down. The geoFence has only just been created. Pushing the details to the client won't help you because Martin et al have ruled out creating geofences in the Service Worker and we don't know if we're in the foreground on the device.

  2. The library is closing. The librarian sends a push message to anyone in the building (who hopefully have their notifications on vibrate :-)

  3. The next 10 customers to the Guild Tavern get a free beer. No use having permanent geofences around every retail establishment that may want to communicate with customers.

This is SERVER driven logic not fat client bloatware.

@RichardMaher

What's Mozilla doing? Floundering :-( Please see:
https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1216148
https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=784505

Please put your WAKE_LOCK sledge-hammers away - all of you!

BTW. An additional piece of ServiceWorker GeoLocation governance, on Chrome at least, is that the gcm_sender_id/procet_id can be revoke for sites behaving badly.

@RichardMaher

Solution Addendum (Sorry)

Other Options: -
4) When the device goes to sleep when a Web App is still watching GPS, or simply backgrounds or minimizes a device-tracker, it should make a sound and or vibrate as a non-visual cue that tracking is ongoing?
5) When a device is reawakened or a device-tracking app is brought back to the foreground, then a notification must be sent to the user "This App continued to monitor your location in the background". The "Settings" icon on the message could facilitate "Prevent this app from tracking in the background" Forever/Just once.
6) Like the Push API the default must be DO NOT track in the background. If the user chooses the individual APP settings then they can turn it on?

@RichardMaher

GPS Tracking Use Cases: -

  • Can I beseech the browser-developer community at large to please contribute their own use cases to this thread?
  1. University security have just been told there's a shooter on campus. They touch the google maps screen and tell the system to warn everyone in a 2km radius to get out or get down. The geoFence has only just been created. Pushing the details to the client won't help you because the architects are currently considering banning creating a geofence around current position as it facilitates quasi-tracking. What's more is the time, bandwidth, CPU, and baterry-power wasted pushing a geofence to ALL users when most of them are not effected by or resident in the danger zone.

  2. I want to track my jogging and bike-riding journeys to share with friends and manage calories-burned and effort. "Health & Fitness" market? Ignore it?

  3. I want to know when members of my coffee club are getting close so I can start ordering.

  4. Let me know if bad weather is moving in.

  5. The library is closing. The librarian sends a push message to anyone in the building (who hopefully have their notifications on vibrate :-) giving clients 15mins to finish up.

  6. The next 10 customers to the Guild Tavern get a free beer. No use having permanent geofences around every retail establishment that may want to communicate with customers.

  7. How about a trucking or taxi company wants a central head office PC constantly tracking fleet movements in real-time.

  8. Pizza Co. want to let users see where their pizza van is. The van driver doesn't have to have his phone screen on killing his battery for Pete's sake.

Look, I'm not paranoid enough to suggest that W3C members are on the take from the Native App providers but, Service Worker developers are simply being obtuse if they continue to deny the requirements for location tracking and not just a hamstrung, debilitated geoFence API. The requestWakeLock() method has it's uses for those who don't care about battery life. User/device tracking Apps is not one of them.

The devolved decision-making paradigm inherent in the current GeoFencing model is simply incapable of satisfying the legitimate business and user requirements.

@RichardMaher

I found a very interesting, and inspiring quote today that I'd like to share with you: -

https://twitter.com/jaffathecake
Googler. "I want the web to do everything native can, and fast."

So can anyone here explain to me how that precludes device/user tracking? Or how HTML5 Web Apps can not be available today with the same functionality as Uber, Domino's, GrindR, FaceBook, tomtom?

What the hell are you waiting for?

Here's a couple more platitudes to get you through to the next F2F plenary junket: -

https://twitter.com/jaffathecake/status/633621917547778048

"The web should look to increase its advantages while reducing its disadvantages. Native is doing this too. If the web stops, it dies."

"The web doesn't need to be better than native at everything, it just needs to be close enough that the gap in certain areas doesn't matter."

@RichardMaher

A victory for common sense. Excellent news!

On Thu, May 12, 2016 at 2:40 AM, Marijn Kruisselbrink mek@chromium.org wrote:
For quite a while now the geofencing API hasn't been much of a priority for us. Now in addition to that we're no longer convinced the geofencing API in its current shape is the best way to address the use cases we're interested in addressing. So with that in mind we've decided to stop work on the geofencing API in its current form.

Marijn

Combine that outcome with this at the upcoming TPAC: -

Hello All,

The registration for TPAC 2016 is now open - relevant information is provided in the email attachment below. There will not be a stand-alone meeting for the Geolocation Working Group, but there will likely be a joint meeting between the Geo WG and the Devices and Sensors (DAS) WG. This should be confirmed soon, and will take place during the DAS WG's allocated meeting time (Sep. 19-20).

Thanks,

-Giri Mandyam, Geolocation Working Group Chair

An the scene is set for a ServiceWorker.TravelManager.subscribe() outcome or, more likely, a generic sensor.AddListener(filterOptions). Either way these are exciting times indeed. Good Luck!

@RikdeBoer

Agree very much with the use-case scenario's described by @ManuelB and @RichardMaher.

There are dozens of use-cases for being able to receive and record geo position updates, whereby the initiating (web)app may or may not run in the background, as the user is temporarily on another tab, or app, and/or has put their mobile device in (s)low-CPU/low-power mode.

With Progressive Web Apps touted as the new way to go and ServiceWorker being one of the mandatory components of PWA, ServiceWorker seems a natural fit.
If not ServiceWorker, then something else. Please redirect me if there is a better place where I should state my case.

But somewhere in PWA we need to be able to receive position (lat/lon) updates from the mobile device's hardware and pass these on to the page that originally activated it.
As I understand it, currently ServiceWorker does not have access to navigator.geolocation, let alone navigator.geolocation.watchPosition(), so in this respect PWA cannot offer what native apps can.

Sure, we must be prudent when it comes to power/battery requirements and privacy issues.
But when I can start a native app on my phone, fully warned & aware that it will use a lot of battery power and that it is recording position updates (because I want it too), then why, should we not have that same functionality under PWA?

As a lover of maps and entrepreneur in the market segment of geolocation-based mobile solutions, this feature, more than any other, is holding PWA back from being something truly great.

@RichardMaher

@RikdeBoer You might also want to watch https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1254911

Yes Blind Freddy can see the requirements and the merit in our arguments. What he can't do is make their Royal Highnesses of the IETF/W3C Cognoscente engage with the unworthy in providing a solution.

To date no one has found fault with my navigator.serviceWorker.travelManager.subcribe(options) idea with the capability of Throttle options to proxy the "interesting" movement test to the UA/Google Play/Message Console yet here we still are :-(

Nothing will happen before the Lisbon jolly.

@marcoscaceres
Member

To date no one has found fault with my navigator.serviceWorker.travelManager.subcribe(options) idea with the capability of Throttle options to proxy the "interesting" movement test to the UA/Google Play/Message Console yet here we still are :-(

It's not that we've not found fault. It's that your constant abuse of people engaged with the standardization process and insane conspiracy theories make it impossible to have any sort of meaningful conversation about this topic with you.

Despite good faith attempts to allow you to collaborate, you have continuously shown yourself incapable of having a civil conversation (why I had you banned from the W3C mailing lists already). I'd again ask that you please remove yourself from the discussion - or I'll ask Github to ban you from here also.

@RichardMaher

@marcoscaceres - Settle Petal! It was certainly not my objective to upset the sensibilities of the artisans at International Rescue.

It's just that, on this outside of the Ivory Tower, the Employer/Employee relationship is normally one where the Employer pays the Employee money in return for directed work undertaken. Unlike @mkruisselbrink 's GeoFence waste of precious time and resources, the aforementioned work effort usually results in deliverables with agreed upon metrics with which to judge their fitness for purpose. Yep, I have to admit to being a tad envious of the "Just be wonderful, Darling!" duty statement.

Anyway, just because I, and Nigel Farage, may believe that most of those in bloated bureaucracies "have never had a proper job" is no excuse for trying to hold you to account and peel back the scab on the IETF/W3C circus. My apologies.

It's not that we've not found fault.

I'm happy to defend the design, or not. If you've got something better let's go with that!

BTW. was that the Royal "we" or are you speaking for someone else again?

make it impossible to have any sort of meaningful conversation about this topic with you.

Less talking; more doing. It's simply not that hard!

I honestly can't believe such a Prima Donna attitude actually exists and is allowed to fester in Australia. "I can't work with him Kyle! KYLE - I just can't work with him!" Really?

you have continuously shown yourself incapable of having a civil conversation

Bollocks!

I suggest to you that a full and frank exchange of views only appears uncivil when viewed through a passive-aggressive prism.

(why I had you banned from the W3C mailing lists already).
I'd again ask that you please remove yourself from the discussion

  • or I'll ask Github to ban you from here also.

I have to admit that I've never met a lefty ideologue who wasn't vehemently opposed to free speech, but I am extremely surprised that Mozilla nurtures a culture of bullying. But allow me to counter your attempts at censorship with a request for you to resign from Mozilla or at least from the IETF/W3C standards junket. Time to hand the baton on and give someone less jaded a go eh?

It's not about me and its certainly not about you. Please let it be about "solutions" - not personalities! I left the schoolyard long ago.

BTW. Why didn't you or anyone else here deem @RikdeBoer worthy of a response? Yarpies are inherently uncivil perhaps?

Background GeoLocation - Just do it!

@jakearchibald
Collaborator

I would support a ban in this case. Not happy seeing friends and colleagues being insulted in this way. I'm on leave until next week, but I'll do it unless someone beats me to it.

@RikdeBoer

Having come into this very late, and not knowing any past history, it looks to me that a great course may be hampered and possibly sunk by a war of words.

This would be a shame.

I do not know @RichardMaher or any history he may have with W3C or github.

For those of you who feel offended… based on what I read above, when I strip off the insulting or abusive language, I see an erudite man, who loves playing with words and is very passionate about pushing a feature request that makes common sense.

Geolocation is huge. Richard’s 8 use-cases above (Feb 19) are just the tip of the ice-berg.

Please do not be distracted or put off from working on the essential feature of "background geolocation” because of Richard’s tone.

PS:
@RichardMaher: calling me a “yarpie” based only on my surname is a long shot, even if meant as a double entendre ;-)

@LJWatson
LJWatson commented Jul 7, 2016

@RichardMaher
There are good people working on this spec (and others at W3C). You make some worthwhile points, but it isn't acceptable to insult and disparage people in the process.

This repo exists outside of W3C space at present, but the spec and the people working on it are part of the W3C community - and it is the responsibility of the WPWG co-chairs to make sure that our part of the community is able to collaborate and converse positively.

Please abide by our code of ethics and professional conduct, and the advice given here.

@RichardMaher

@LJWatson I am more than happy to disappear permanently from this mutual admiration society back to whence I came! I do not get paid for my time, so often wasted, here and while it can be fun, I don't get my jollies out of this sort of stuff.

All I want is progress on the two (and only 2) issues I've been banging on about for the last 6 months: -

  1. Background GeoLocation. The world needs this yesterday!
  2. Client-driven, Push-Manager mapped, Application Server unburdened, broadcast notifications

This repo deals directly with (1). The issues are well-known. ServiceWorkers are the implementation paradigm. The details can be bashed out in a couple of weeks’ Google Groups interaction and then the spec-writers can get to work.

Why is nothing happening???

  • The key word "MUST" is to be interpreted as described in [RFC2119].

. You MUST engage with the industry user-base and software-vendors in the formulation of requirements before proposing standards.

. You MUST be agile in allowing for continual and iterative review and progressive input to specifications.

. You MUST publish design direction as soon as available so incorrect assumptions can be discovered.

. You MUST not deliver a fete accompli accepting no more than grammatical corrections.

. You MUST not seek to own a specification nor personal aggrandisement. It's about results!

. Your specification delivery times MUST be quartered.

. You MUST accept the umpire’s decision on abject failures such as https://github.com/w3c/geofencing-api and not subvert the decision like some deluded sook who voted for Brexit: STAY

. You MUST not attempt to fool all the people that navigator.requestWakeLock(“screen”) is the solution to the Background GeoLocation conundrum!

Leonie, it's just that I am not used to having work farmed out to autonomous-collectives that are seemingly accountable to no one but themselves, and get to cherry-pick assignments as the mood arises. Without any recourse options available, my frustration levels have to peak :-(

There are good people working on this spec

Can you please be more specific? The “ServiceWorker” spec? The “Background GeoLocation” spec? I know you’ve got heaps of good people available. Can we please get some on Background GeoLocation?

and it is the responsibility of the WPWG co-chairs to make sure that our part of the community is able to collaborate and converse positively.

Don’t bother to veil that threat Leonie. Imelda has already gotten me blackballed by stalking me around the Internet, silencing a dissenting voice, and interfering with my ability to eke out a living in the industry. I guess the W3C/Mozilla tentacles get everywhere :-( Why don’t you just turf me out of my wheelchair and kick me in the guts while you’re at it? “Let’s see how far you get in the standards industry now smart-arse.” At least you were “polite”.

So rather than indulge, empathize with, or even pity my Tourette-esque mental health issues you choose to hack me down instead. Truly some of the ugliest people I‘ve come across in a long time :-(

@RichardMaher

@RikdeBoer Really appreciate the empathy, and especially the kind words! Having said that, you’re backing the wrong horse mate. In truth, I am a bit of an obnoxious wanker really, always have been :-) I’ve got this knack of knowing what winds people up; it’s a gift. For example, take a quick squiz at Jake’s twitter feed. I knew I’d get him bristling with “lefty ideologue” and then once I quoted Nigel Farage it was all he could do to not stomp on his phone.

As far as “Yarpie” goes please don’t take it personally as I use it interchangeably with Saffa. No Afrikaans or dim-witted farm boy connotations. Let’s face it the Rik de Boers of this world were only ever going to come from so many places. But what are you doing in sun-deprived Melbourne? You can’t swing a cat in Perth without hitting one of your compatriots. I grew up in East Coburg and I can assure you that you got the short stick my friend. (Lucky the World Cup is so far away. If you can’t beat us now you’ll never beat us!)

This would be a shame.

Mate, it’s breaking my heart. I just can’t understand the delay let alone the recalcitrance.

BTW. I’m right into maps as well. Are you using the Google Maps API? KML as well? If you’re ever in Perth please let me know and we can catch up for a beer.

@slightlyoff
Collaborator

Not an issue appropriate for this repo. Closing.

@antogh
antogh commented Oct 28, 2016

Sorry, i know this is an old thread but me too I'd like to ask to give us some way to build a web app that can use gps position even in background, for good purposes and with the user permission of course. There are tons of reasons for having this need, just consider the webAPP as an APP, not as web site. So today the only way to do this is with native app, examples of this kind of native apps are navigators, uber, glympse and I could go on with many others. A web app is perfectly capable to provide the same features with the same security for the user, but the browser is blocking this so we are forced to write native apps and to deal with multiple platforms and stores, creating friction for users that have to go through the long boring procedure for installing the app. We all know this way doesn't work anymore. Let's not stop the progress and let's make the web apps finally a reality. Thank you

Sign up for free to join this conversation on GitHub. Already have an account? Sign in to comment