Mihai Peteu's Masters Thesis, CityTagz, is a web-based location-tagging interface and database. Used in conjunction with Google Maps, CityTagz allows Los Angeles residents to describe and define their neighborhood, and better understand the true nature of the landscape around them.
Any potential CityTagz user can discover, locate and place annotations on a map of L.A. The process begins with the user's decision to tag a location; tagging in this case means to mark or annotate a place of importance on a geographical map. Once a person fills in some information about the location they wish to describe, they can save their tag, thereby entering it into the database. This place, and their experience of it, then becomes immediately available for all CityTagz users to see on the collective map of the Greater Los Angeles area.
By allowing users to tag their favorite (and least favorite) places on a large scale using informal, subjective categories, CityTagz personalizes the rigid principles of mapmaking. Instead of one "objective" view of Los Angeles, CityTagz allows its users to see the variety of experiences and perspectives their city has to offer. With its casual graphical style and an easy-to-use interface, CityTagz could potentially help facilitate a rich social community, or several intersecting communities, of location taggers.
Through a simple sign-up (with no personal information required) anyone can join the CityTagz community. Click here to get a beta account and start tagging your city.
For a more comprehensive understanding of the process and philosophy behind CityTagz, you can also read or download Mihai Peteu's thesis paper.