Internalizing location services with GeoNames

Presented by John Marc Imbrescia, Senior Software Engineer, Etsy.com

Etsy recently chose to bring our location services in house. We used the open source GeoNames data set and built the tools we needed to use that data to allow members to select their location, show translations of place names, and to feed data into our search database for local, regional, and country based searches.

This talk will cover the implementation details and decisions we made along the way. How we mapped places from our old data set to the GeoNames data. The internal tools we built including a SOLR core for doing location place name autosuggest. Modifications to our Listings Search and Shop Search cores and the different ways we use location based search around the site both distance and region based using GeoNames hierarchy data.

There will also be a discussion about choosing to release some of the tools we built for this project open source and the decisions behind the non-search (display etc.) related elements of the project and the tools we chose for them and why.

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