If you visualise your search area as a circle around your 'target' coordinates, then you
can eliminate many of the irrelevant rows by search for coordinates that fall within a
square surrounding that circle.
So, imagine a simple grid with target coordinates of 6,8 and a search radius of 3.
Therefore you search WHERE x BETWEEN 3 AND 9 AND y BETWEEN 5 AND 11.
I'm not certain but I think MySQL should be able to used a combined index of (x,y) for
that. As you probably know you can use EXPLAIN SELECT to check whether MySQL is using an
index.
HTH,
James Harvard
At 12:01 pm +0000 10/1/06, Ben Clewett wrote:
>I have a need to locate (x,y) coordinates from mysql where they are close to another
> coordinate. For instance, all pizza bars near my car.
>
>Example: Searching for points closer than z to (i,j) using Pythagoras:
>
>SET i = 10;
>SET j = 10;
>SET z = 30;
>SELECT x, y
> FROM coordinates
> WHERE POW(x - @i, 2) + POW(y - @i, 2) < POW(@z, 2)
>
>Big problem! Must searches every row. Linear indexing not able to help here.