Flagfox & Geotool: The Who and Where

Flagfox is written and maintained by Dave Garrett.

Geotool is written and maintained by Richard van der Leeden.

Flagfox has well over a million users so I guess people can be forgiven for frequently thinking that it’s a bigger project than two guys doing this all in their spare time as a hobby. I do Flagfox and Richard does Geotool, the default action you get when clicking the Flagfox icon. Richard hosts the support forums and I do the bulk of the support work on the forums and via email. We have a great working relationship but sometimes not enough working time. 😉

We also have around 40 volunteer translators via BabelZilla translating Flagfox and Geotool into over 30 languages, some of whom are wonderful people who will post updates before you can even ask and others are one-time volunteers who vanish without a trace and are replaced as needed. I manage the translation side of things, which is often like herding cats…

Flagfox and Geotool are directly connected as Geotool is Flagfox’s default action on icon click, and they are both translated together on BabelZilla, but the projects themselves are largely separate. You can use just Flagfox or just Geotool or both together.

Both Flagfox and Geotool use IP geolocation data provided for free to anyone by Maxmind. We have no direct relationship with Maxmind and do not maintain their databases.

This is all geolocation related, so as such, here’s where everything is:

  • I’m in the Philadelphia area in the United States
  • Richard is in the London area in the United Kingdom
  • Flagfox is downloaded and updated from Mozilla’s server in California (US)
  • The Geotool server is in Utah (US)
  • This blog server is in Texas (US)
  • The forums server is in England with Richard
  • Maxmind is in Massachusetts (US) and their server is in Texas (US)
  • The BabelZilla server is in Germany
  • The translators are scattered across the whole surface of the Earth

As you see, this is a bit of a global project, but whilst there’s a lot involved it all boils down to me writing a Firefox extension and a guy on the other side of the Atlantic writing a website. Sure, it’s an extension and a website with many users, but this is nonetheless still a hobby project that has gotten quite large. We’ll try our best to keep it up and free to all, but please remember that it’s all done by a couple of people in their free time when something inevitably breaks…

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3 Comments

  1. Robert Janc

    I have been pounding on FF4b7 for about 5 hours. Seems quite solid. I would use it for everyday browsing but for two add-ons that don’t work.

    Flagfox and RefControl.

    I use Flagfox to verify IP addresses of my bank etc. Seems like your are working the issue and “supposedly” FF4b7 is feature complete.

    • Install a Flagfox 4.1 development build for Firefox 4.0 beta 7+ support. Due to the number of changes that were happening for Firefox 4.0 development that were breaking Flagfox compatibility, repeatedly, I moved support for newer Firefox 4 betas to the development channel.

      • Robert Janc

        Flagfox 4.1a4 works great. The only issue, not yours, is that icons on the add-on bar are all too high; at least on osx.

        Thanks for this great add-on.