I'm researching location search (ultimately on a Force.com site). For example's sake, the problem is to dynamically show a user what stores are w/in a certain distance (say miles) of a postal code that they enter. I'd probably have a few fixed options: 5, 10, 15, 25, 50, 50+ miles.
I'm wondering if the Geolocation pilot feature would be useful. I can't get access to the pilot and I don't see public API docs. The blog post shows the Geolocation object taking longitude and latitude parameters. Is there a Constructor that takes postal codes? Or, a recommended way of getting longitude and latitude from postal code?
I'm curious how other people solve this within Salesforce with or without the Geolocation object. Also, are there limitations and/or governor limits that people have hit and/or worry about in their solutions?