Frequently Asked Questions

What is a POI?

POI is a common term for points of interest, or places of interest. Wikipedia's definition is pretty good.

What is the OpenPOIs Registry?

A database of points of interest information containing names and point locations for millions of businesses and civic places across the globe. Access is free and the data is open to all to use.

Why create yet another POI database?

  1. We're all about connecting the Web: Most POI databases are meant to provide rich, detailed information about the places in their database. The intent of OpenPOI Registry is to be a comprehensive directory of links to other POI databases having the actual information about the places themselves. OpenPOI Registry is kind of like a phone book for POIs. We don't store a lot of data. But we can tell you the best places to get data.
  2. We love historians and researchers: OpenPOI Registry is the only service committed to serving the needs of historical data. We will support time-based queries and historical data storage, so that you can find all the information about a place, not just what's there today.

How can I get the data?

The database can be queried by bounding box or by name via simple WFS requests. Each POI also has an elegant, permanent, RESTful URI.

What format is this data in?

All queries return data in either XML or JSON format conforming to the draft W3C POIWG specification.