pantopic: proximity-based wireless social networking services, for the people...

It seems so exciting. Something right out of "Smartmobs." Everyone around you is carrying a small, networked computer called a cellphone. Couldn't we use these things to build some interesting social software based on people interacting in real time? We could. And in fact with some basic J2ME and a little time, I did.

The trouble is that with so few phones supporting this technology (MIDP 2.0, Bluetooth), it can get a little boring looking for the few registered users in your area.

"But me and my nerdy friends alll have smartphones with Bluetooth!"

Enter pantopic. Though it seems ridiculous at this early stage to go trumpeting "unlike other proximity-based wireless social networking services" - pantopic has one pretty big difference from the few others in this space.

With pantopic, you don't need everyone to have the technology for it to be fun. If a few of your friends are using it, all of the sudden you have a way to find out where they are, who they're with, and if you might meet any interesting new people if you go there. Leveraging networks of weak ties - Granovetter meets Kortuem - you know the drill...

It also reads profiles and RSS feeds from registered people around you. My aim was to make this thing as simple and open as possible in hopes that a few more people jump on the proximity-based wireless social networking services bandwagon.

Come on, it will be fun!


About the author:

pantopic is a project by Ian Curry

More of his works can be found online at

Another interesting project involving Bluetooth can be found at

You can email him at