The Weekly Geek 2.0: Google Latitude is the jealous girlfriend’s dream come true


Welcome to the very first installment of the weekly geek, where we’ll cover the world of tech, gadgets and the Web with a distinctly lesbian flavor. This week, we take a look at the freshest release from Google: Latitude.

OK, ladies: Raise your hand if you’re addicted to Google’s Web-based programs. Yeah, I thought so. Tech- and Web-savvy folks swear by them for good reason: They’re fun, they’re free and most of them are actually very useful, making them about the only things on earth that actually combine those three features.

Well, the internet behemoth has just unleashed the newest addition to the Google family, a life-enhancing, time-saving, potentially restraining order-facilitating beauty called Latitude. Through the power of Google Maps and some sort of cell phone voodoo magic (it’s not GPS!), Latitude provides you with an up-to-the-minute visual of where your friends are on the map of your area. You’ll see their beautiful mugs (or cat’s mugs) right over a typical Google Map interface.

The best part is that it works equally well from a phone or from your computer screen, and there’s no service provider red tape to wade through. All you need to do is visit the app’s site, get your friends/enemies/coworkers/contacts to do the same and viola! You’ll never lose at hide and seek again.

Just imagine the implications for lesbians — wondering about that cute girl from work who always turned up fuzzy on the gaydar? Just watch as she pops in to the women’s bar on Friday night. Trying to find your friends at a little hole-in-the-wall Indian joint? Just track them down without any awkward, “Where are you? Under the giant Vishnu statue?” conversations.

Potential stalkers and jealous girlfriends beware, however, privacy is (thankfully) king in Latitude. Every user has to consent to being on your list. So if you’re wondering if your special lady is actually at yoga or if she’s trying some new poses with the instructor in her downtown loft, well, you’re going have to find out the old-fashioned way: by checking her phone while she sleeps.

I kid, I kid.

I have to say that, as a geek, I may be mildly in love with Google products. I use Google Maps for everything imaginable, I often type things up in Google docs when I don’t feel like loading Word (those five seconds are precious), and I even fool with apps that have nothing to do with my life (like Translate), just for the fun of it.

Now if only Google would put out a program that prevented excessive Facebook and Twitter time wasting, I’d be all set.

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