Topic: Users relative distance

I'm trying to find what the standard practice is for taking a user's provided address and finding their relative ditances by query. I assume their addresses would be converted to lat/long, stored as geo loc. data, and then a simple algorith could be applied.

Should I be pulling lat/long from a database, retreiving from google's api, or is there a good gem I haven't seen? This is a common enough task these days. I'm suprised there's no well supported gem. The ones I saw seemed dated, then again, the search funtionality on rubygems is awful.