I have only played with that a little.. but if it can (or could be made to) find all Monks withing X miles of you, that would be helpful. From a quick glance,
you have to be pretty good at judging lat and long differences to determine how far someone is :) But yes, this is the type of thing I think could be
useful in this section.
Actually, this feature is implemented, you go to the Monks Map section, set yourself as "Monk of origin" and sort the list by 'Distance closest'. I know now that davorg is the closest monk from where I live.
Okay, he lives 204 miles from my home, quite a walk to have a beer. I'll stick with the paris.pmguys for now!
While I commonly check out the Monk Maps section on the
stats page, not every monk has his/her location listed since
it is entirely up to the monk to type in the special
location tag that jcwren checks for. Likewise, you
mention that the closest monk to you is 200 miles away. I'm
90 miles from the 2 monks closest to me that have bothered
to take the time to list location. I really don't believe
that the 2 closest monks are 90 miles from me.
What tilly brings up is very valid. Not all monks have
a static location, so by being able to post in this
gatherings section, he could announce that he is able to
hang out with any monk swinging through town. So, I'm not
really sure that anyone has given valid resistance to adding
such a feature. That is not to say there aren't valid
reasons, but if there are, nobody has successfully voiced one.