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I noticed that on the initial signup you have a very fast, accurate geocoding functionality.

I traced the URL back to http://careers.stackoverflow.com/jobs/checklocation?location={{location}} and it seems to accept almost any properly spelled location.

What service do you use? And, how do you keep it running so fast?!?

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We typically get the initial geo data from Yahoo. They have a developer console if you'd like to try it out for yourself. As a secondary source of information we also occasionally use openstreetmap. In addition, we do a lot of caching to improve the speed of geo searches (there's no need to ask Yahoo where San Francisco is every time someone searches for jobs there).

There is also some filtering done based on indexable items, such as country code, and we're actively working on other ways to improve the service which are beyond the scope of your question... and subject to change at anytime.

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