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Re: Spatial index in Airtable? Or some other way to query locations within radius of latitude/longit

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Sean_Tierney
4 - Data Explorer
4 - Data Explorer

TL;DR - trying to determine best way to notify users as new locations come online within their specified location radius.

More context: I created Charity Makeover and am in process of building an Airtable app to enable people in other cities to run these events. It’s similar in concept to Startup Weekend only focused on building stuff for local charities. I’m essentially looking to replicate some of the functionality of Meetup in that I want to give prospective volunteers the ability to get notified when a new Charity Makeover event happens within their locale.

My question is: is there a simple way to accomplish this type of pub/sub setup with geolocation or does it need to be created from scratch? I’ve been researching terms like geofencing and proximity-based notifications to try and find some SaaS based way of accomplishing this rather than developing it. I have to imagine this is a common need with geo-based searches… Haven’t found a “packaged” way to do it yet so am now going down rabbit hole looking into GIS spatial index capability like exists in MySQL. Does the equivalent exist in Airtable? Most ideal would be a no-code way of handling this but second best would be a field type that expresses locational data and can be queried efficiently… thanks

10 Replies 10
oranesteeer
4 - Data Explorer
4 - Data Explorer

Hey everyone!

I stumbled upon this post and found it really interesting, as I have some knowledge and experience in the field of GIS in Business Analytics: Explore. The concept of utilizing a spatial index or a similar method to query locations within a radius of latitude and longitude in Airtable is quite intriguing.

As the author mentioned, implementing a pub/sub setup with geolocation for notifying users about new events or locations within their specified radius can be a valuable feature. I believe it's essential to explore existing solutions before diving into custom development. Geofencing and proximity-based notifications are indeed common approaches in this context.

While I'm not aware of a pre-packaged solution specifically for Airtable, I suggest looking into third-party integrations or plugins that might offer the desired functionality. Additionally, considering the availability of GIS spatial index capabilities like those in MySQL, it would be worthwhile to investigate if Airtable provides similar features.

Ideally, a no-code solution would be convenient, but a field type that efficiently stores and queries location data could also be a suitable alternative. I encourage the author to continue their research, exploring different options and seeking advice from the Airtable community or relevant forums.

Best of luck with your project