A user can access a common database from a remote communications port, at any qualified location, to generate a map or other positional information which locates selected items of interest, e.g., businesses, stores, architectural sites, and the like. The database contains information representing the items of interest, including, for each of the items of interest, positional coordinates, a geographic vicinity, and a selected category. The positional coordinates discretely locate the vicinity, while the vicinity specifies the exact locations of the items of interest in the selected category. For example, a user in New York can select the display of sporting shops in the area surrounding Chicago O'Hara International Airport selectively. A user can also access a port and display locations of items of interest within the same vicinity as the user and relative to the user's position. The database can be modified from qualified remote locations to change, or add to, the information therein. An advertisement can be tagged to the display or print out as an association with the selected items of interest.