ISO 6709:2008 is applicable to the interchange of coordinates describing geographic point location. It specifies the representation of coordinates, including latitude and longitude, to be used in data interchange. It additionally specifies representation of horizontal point location using coordinate types other than latitude and longitude. It also specifies the representation of height and depth that can be associated with horizontal coordinates. Representation includes units of measure and coordinate order.
ISO 6709:2008 is not applicable to the representation of information held within computer memories during processing and in their use in registers of geodetic codes and parameters.
ISO 6709:2008 supports point location representation through the eXtensible Markup Language (XML) and, recognizing the need for compatibility with the previous version of this International Standard, ISO 6709:1983, allows for the use of a single alpha-numeric string to describe point locations.
For computer data interchange of latitude and longitude, ISO 6709:2008 generally suggests that decimal degrees be used. It allows the use of sexagesimal notations: degrees, minutes and decimal minutes or degrees, minutes, seconds and decimal seconds.
ISO 6709:2008 does not require special internal procedures, file-organization techniques, storage medium, languages, etc., to be used in its implementation.