Google just launched Hotpot, a location-based recommendation application. Mashable notes that “location is one of the fastest-growing segments of the tech industry.” Twenty years ago, just before the Web was unleashed on us, I used to tell people that “all information is local” (only Bostonians – and of a certain age – may remember Tip O’Neill‘s “all politics is local”). I was convinced that our information needs are very much tied to where we live, or more generally, where we are present at any given moment. The Web, being a global (and globalizing) medium, brought us into a new, virtual, world, where our physical location didn’t matter. So on we went for almost twenty years of connecting, and socializing, and creating virtual communities spanning the globe. “The globe,” of course, also included our physical locations. But the emphasis was on information-at-a-distance. Now, Web innovation is turning its focus to tools for accessing, creating, and discovering local information. I still thinks that’s where the money is, an order of magnitude more Web-related revenues than we have seen so far.