Recent diary entries
My user name is same as my real name: Pratik Yadav. But I find the stories of usernames (that are not their real name) very fascinating.
I met a few people in SOTM where they shared how their username relates to their hobby, interest and sometimes a hidden meaning.
If you have a username that has a story, post in comment.
As last year I participated at the 2. OSM Sommercamp at the Linux Hotel in Essen, Germany. Plan was to do some development for libosmscout.
The master plan for this year was already there, and as part of this I wanted to concentrate on caching of data in the MapPainter thus improving the performance of the render. Since a few days before I got some hints regarding possible performance problem in the label layouter I wanted to take a look at that first. Another topic was creation of simple HTML pages during the import process to dump all those findings about (possible) mapping errors that were detected during import.
Simple results first: The creating of HTML was already prepared before so at the SommerCamp the main task was to go through all the warnings and errors created during the import and convert them to the new API. At the end of the Sommercamp most stuff now was dumped to the HTML pages, too. A quick scan shows that for small imported regions most error occur because of some clipping problems, for larger region a fair amount of error are either due to libosmscout not knowing some types of objects or actual mapping problems. Next step would be some central server that builds libosmscout regularly and imports *.osm.pbf files people are interested in getting results for. While we do have central Travis and Appveyor builds the memory demand during import is likely too high to run imports there.
Next I improved MapTileCache so we now have a nice data structure that allows a renderer to use it for caching "things" (which could be handles, measurement result,...).
After that I took a look at the label layouter. In fact there was some O^2 algorithmic deficiency (how could that happen!?). Since I planed that anyway and to try to improve the API to the rest of the renderer I moved the layouting to its own class and at the same time removed the O^2 problem.
During testing I found some mysterious performance effect. While scrolling through the map, map rendering suddenly got much, much slower. After much analysing, dumping of ids, the cause was clear.
- Libosmscout does some heavy work trying to merge ways in cases where they have the same attributes. Longer way mean, simpler routing graph, less data overhead.
- On the other hand since some time libosmscout now does repetitive contour label rendering on ways (before that the contour labels was just rendered once on each way segment, independent of its length).
- For detecting if a way should be rendered or not we use simple bounding box clipping.
Result: For the river Rhine for the nordrhein-westfalen import we generated a very long way (from Bonn up to the the german border in the north). The style sheet defines a contour labels for this. The effect bounding box for the river did go to the right up to Essen (where the Rhine is not visible, but because of the snake like meandering the bounding box still was there). So somewhere around Essen we started to render contour labels for the whole of the Rhine. Labels that were actually not visible on the resulting map. During the Sommercamp I fixed this by defining an upper limit on the way merging. Since the problem occurred after the Sommercamp again for some ferry line Lukas fixed this again with a more general approach by explicitly splitting ways again after merging.
Label rendering is now faster than before. Though we still need some geometric solution to further reduce the overhead.
Finally time was spend to eat some cake at the 12. birthday of OSM :-)
When I read Michal Migurski's recent post robots, crisis, and craft mappers, I was really baffled and concerned. I am a fan of Migurski; he's a good person and a smart guy. But the content of this particular blog post was really off. I had hoped it would pass with little notice, but I can tell from the #craftmapper T-shirts at SOTM that people actually paid attention, so sadly I feel compelled now to rebut, and hopefully offer some useful perspective as well.
To get something out of the way first, I am absolutely a "armchair" or "craft" mapper, and an addicted mapper, averaging ~5 hours a day mapping for the past 3.5 years; by my own estimation, there are only two human OSM accounts (katpatuka and Heinz_V) with more node/way contribution. (Also, shoutouts to AndrewBuck, Stalker61 and ulilu!) I care passionately about the map, I've been in geo since the 90s, and I've been inside Google to see how mapping actually happens at scale.
To start with, he writes:
The OpenStreetMap community is at a crossroads
Arguably, no it isn't. It is actually on a stable trajectory, with no major shifts likely.
I see three different movements within OpenStreetMap: mapping by robots, intensive crisis mapping in remote areas, and local craft mapping where technologists live
Actually, no. "Robot" mapping is a perennial project of AI zealots, not a movement, and cannot and will not produce acceptable data (for reasons way beyond the scope of this rant). At best, it is another way to produce yet more controversial imports of dubious quality. Crisis mapping is now well-established for many years, not a new or dynamic trend; same with local or remote "craft" mapping, i.e. normal OSM contributors; not a movement, and not new.
The first two represent an exciting future for OSM, while the third could doom it to irrelevance.
This is saying that normal OSM contributors, the ones that have and continue to build most of the map - and the great majority of the quality map - are "irrelevant". This is really, 100% wrong.
Historically, OpenStreetMap activity took place in and around the home areas of OSM project members
True enough, and that is still the single largest source of quality map contributions. The other parts are imports, a small amount of commercially-sponsored input, and armchair mappers like myself, tracing aerials from the places that can't (or can't yet) map themselves, either for HOT or MissingMaps or beyond. Together, that IS OSM, past and present, and unless Something Dramatic happens, that is also OSM's future.
Craft mapping remains the heart of the project, potentially due to a passive Foundation board who’ve let outdated behaviors go unexamined.
I am trying to figure out how to not feel hurt by this. "OUTDATED." The passion that drives the entire past, present and future of OSM is "outdated?"
Left to the craft wing, OSM will slide into weekend irrelevance within 5-10 years.
That's basically saying that OSM is irrelevant today. As an opinion, that's a pretty harsh one.
Two Modest Proposals (1) codes of conduct and other mechanisms intended to welcome new participants from under-represented communities
This sounds fine, but it seems orthogonal to the "robot, crisis, craft" framing. It seems uncontroversial to empower and support more crisis/craft mappers from under-represented communities.
(2) the license needs to be publicly and visibly explained and defended for the benefit of large-scale and robot participants
I have sat out the license wars, partly because, as a regular non-lawyer human, I cannot fathom what all the fuss is about. That said, it also seems unrelated to crisis/craft mappers, with or without AI-robot assistance to produce data for human review, who will surely be able to proceed with or without license changes.
I could say much more about this, but much has already been hashed out of the comment thread on the original blog. For example, "automation vs. craft is a strawman argument; Both - in an integrated manner!" yes obviously.
Instead, I'd like to provide an answer the question I believe Migurski is actually asking. I believe he is saying:
- While better in some areas, OSM isn't on par, for the full range of uses, with maps from Google/Apple/etc.
- The existing approaches aren't on a trajectory to get us there, therefore they "doom us to irrelevance".
- We need something more to get us there, but what is it (robots? codes of conduct? license changes?)
The answer to this question is obvious, but everyone seems to be waffling and dodging it. I will say it: MONEY.
To be a top-tier global map, it takes roomfuls of full-time, paid mappers, with the kind of resources and coordination that (realistically) are only found in large corporations.
Clickshops. Google has them, Apple has them, any organization that wants to take OSM to the "next level" will need them. In some developing nation (for cost), with fast computers and fast networks and thorough, regularized training for speed and consistency. (In case someone is thinking Mapbox, that's nice, but think bigger. Think 100x.)
Streetview. Every station in Google's clickshops has the entire catalog of streetview instantly available, continuously integrated into the mapping flow. Without a streetview-like dataset, you just can't do it. I know Mapillary (+JOSM plugin) is trying, but they are not even close - you have to capture FULL 360 (cylindrical) imagery, not just hope that hobbyists were pointing their camera where you need to to look, and you need the RESOLUTION to read street names. Not even 1% of mapillary users are capturing HD 360 imagery. You can't do it with prosumer cameras (I've tried). You need an expensive rig. Stop pretending otherwise.
Some company or consortium (or, in theory, government, but I'm not holding my breath) could step forward with MONEY and take OSM to that "level III/IV" Migurski (and many others) would like to see. Barring that, everyone needs to extend love to the homebrew/crisis/craft/mapathon mappers we have, because we ARE OSM's future.
Hello everybody. In recent days, I added some improvements for Lima (Peru). After the first update, now enlisted more contributions to revise and preserve the city for the next months.
- Updating Via Parque Rimac and Costanera highways. The inaguration is in 2017-2018.
- Retouches in the historic center of Lima and some neighborhoods as Barrios Altos and Rimac
- (Interval) streets in La Punta and the historic center
- More improvements in Campo de Marte and Paseo de las Aguas
- Construction of second part of the Callao's airport and new underground highway
- Sidewalks in the parks
- Added Mercado Unicachi, rural market, and some tweaks in Comas district
- Added a fort in Rimac district (see La Muralla) and orientation maps in urban parks
- Added Sea sport track (I don't know the real name) in south of Lima for the 2019 Pan American Games.
- More shops in Mega Plaza (like Plaza Norte).
- Structuring Pachacutec to differentiate with Santa Rosa and Punte Piedra locations.
- Added Ciudad Satélite Santa Rosa (residential city) near the airport
- Retouching in Pachacámac (Lurin)
- Building Design National Stadium
- Buildings in Gamarra shopping center (completed)
- Streets with vector lines (San Isidro?)
- More schools to help in the upcoming elections (maybe, the presidential and rural in 2020)
- Remove "alpine hut" and replace with other objects
- Traffic lights strategically located in the streets
- Find out if some local work, especially in areas prone to landslides or similar
It is possible that visual applications like Maps.me or Osmand finish saying as "updated map" so this list serves very useful for both experienced and novice in OpenStreetMap. Any contribution is welcome comments. Greetings.
This was translated from the original post
It took more than 6 months to reach my personal target (map a boundary set by various roads, culminating at the ancient – although now mostly gently rotting – centre of Carlton). Now, I do admit that I've still got to complete a bit of the extreme west end of this mapping (Porchester Gardens), but the greatest extent has been done. In the light of that, perhaps I can indulge myself a little.
Close by the junction of Burton Road and Cavendish Drive is the Army Reserve Centre (‘ARC’) of the Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry. They are a cavalry unit, and this is not a bad picture of one of their vehicles:
Useful for shifting the worst of the traffic jams, I would have thought.
Proposal procedure is not something required to introduce a new tagging scheme, however, some people are brave enough to start it for tags they want to introduce. But then, they are not obligated to follow this procedure, not only in form of being able to abandon a proposal (which is normal - you don't have to finish it if you don't want to) but also in form of disregarding the RFC stage.
RFC stands for Request for Comments. Supposedly, it serves to collect feedback and to correct errors found by reviewers. But currently, proposal author is not obligated to take any feedback into account, even in a simple form of replies on a Talk: page (leave aside actual addressing the issues, mentioned there). Since voters are not always reading Talk: page, they could be unaware of those open issues and cast their votes regardless of that. This makes an RFC stage (and the whole proposal procedure) nothing more than a formality.
My view on it is that voting stage should never be started (allowed to start) without addressing every issue submitted by proposal reviewers. Otherwise, no improvement of proposed scheme is possible if an author is lazy enough.
never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
it tolls for thee.
Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions, "Meditation XVII"
(written in 1624 whilst Dean of St. Paul’s, following a potentially fatal bout of spotted fever)
A young chap that lives in West View Road, Carlton (a private, unadopted road) explained during my latest mapping session that his house is subject to Chancel Repair Liability. The object in the middling distance below is responsible for that (it is called ‘Gedling Church’):
The Carlton householder explained Chancel Tax as applying to those that “can hear the Church bells”. The full story (Wikipedia) is less romantic and much more complex, but the statement is accurate enough in it’s way. It is a uniquely English & Welsh story, involving medieval (pre-1536) church history, Henry VIII & rich men’s responsibilities that have come to haunt modern land-owners (those that own their own house).
The ‘Chancel’ is the liturgical heart of an Anglican Church (normally at the east end, and so on). Chancel Tax originates hundreds of years ago as the responsibility of land-owners to pay for the upkeep of a church (normally their parish church). Getting from those medieval times to now involves a fabulously tortured path, and the consequences can be likewise.
This all came to a head for Adrian and Gail Wallbank in 2009 when they were forced to sell their home. A couple of decades earlier they out-of-the-blue had received a bill upon their doormat for £100,000 GBP of Chancel Tax (the same value at that time as their home) and had decided to fight it through the courts. It took 18 years for them to lose their case; they then had to find an additional £250,000 GBP for legal costs (£350,000 GBP total; $454,000 USD, €408,000 Euro currently).
This is a curious connection to my earlier Diary entry on Ecclesiastical Parishes. Wikipedia states that there are ~15,000 such parishes, of which 5,200 are responsible for chancel repair. Of those, only a minority have exercised their right to deploy this Tax if required. A 2014 House of Lords bill, if enacted, will finally remove all such rights to do so.
Most interesting (unless your home is threatened by it).
At the Python Unconference in Hamburg, we released the new OSMAlchemy library, which allows for the simple creation of arbitrary, OSM-data based applications with a low resource footprint in Python. It wraps around the popular SQLAlchemy database library and allows access to the whole world of OSM data as if it were in a local SQL database, and uses such a local database for caching.
You can write to email@example.com if you have questions or comments, or use the GitHub issue tracker.
I'll be at State of the Map in Brussels this week presenting all of our work on validating OpenStreetMap data. At Mapbox, we spent the last few months looking at changes that happen in OpenStreetMap closely - geometry, tags, users and the community. I'm really excited to share what we learned, and to open the conversation on how the community can focus on keeping the map from breaking while growing. I'll be presenting the tools we have been building, insights about problematic changes, response, mechanics of communication and more during my talk.
Our team just published an approach to validating OpenStreetMap data - talking about identifying problematic changes, inspecting them, communicating and eventually fixing. Let me know what you think!
What makes OpenStreetMap special is the community. The community is what makes OpenStreetMap a truly self-healing map. The community is the map.
Map of recently reverted changesets
If you haven't already, watch Sanjay Bhangar's presentation at State of the Map US.
I was meaning to say (and left it a bit late) it is a great honour to be nominated for the OpenStreetMap awards.
I have realised recently, with some embarrassment, that despite trying to contribute in many different areas, my greatest contribution to OpenStreetMap has almost certainly been my diary entries about people sitting around in pubs! :-)
I think my pub diaries date back to 2008 some time. I started writing them as a way to promote our London meet-ups and also to try to inspire others to run similar events worldwide. Hopefully it succeeded in that aim to some extent. But it also developed into a sort of newsletter with a mixture of sometimes current, sometimes just random, topics in and around OpenStreetMap, mixed with some of my own half-baked opinions and opinions of others around the pub table ...if I agreed with them ;-)
It turned into quite a habit, which I felt I should keep going. I even became quite organised, by actually writing notes in the pub. I adopted a sort of stream-of-conciousness writing style. Nothing too polished. I think this helped make it a bit less effort, but even so, it added up to quite a lot of effort over the years. It's nice to have this recognition of my primary OpenStreetMap talent: writing about people in pubs!
I think that Zverik has done a great job putting together these awards. It's an idea I've pondered in the past, but never got off my ass to do. I hope they're considered successful, and become a regular annual fixture to recognise more people within our community. Hopefully it will motivate people. Hopefully it won't make people feel resentment. Probably it won't do either of those things all that much, but...
I think it feeds nicely into another positive effect. Thinking about OpenStreetMap "storytelling", things like this create a "human interest story" where previously we may have missed it. Take the "core systems" category for instance. We spend a lot of time talking about technologies like Nominatim, iD, osm-carto, OverpassAPI, etc, but if we can find a way to spend more time talking about Sarah Hoffman, Bryan Housel, Mateusz Konieczny, Roland Olbricht, Grant Slater and Tom Hughes, this not only gives them some much-deserved kudos, but it makes the story more interesting somehow. In our open community we miss out a bit on this by being so egalitarian, altruistic, and just plain over-modest all the time!
Other fantastic efforts which create a human interest story include the Belgian community's "Mapper of the month interviews", and the OpenCageData interviews. I'm a huge fan of those. Again, it's a thing I pondered about doing but never got off my ass and did it. I think we need to weave a bit of this good stuff into the blog.openstreetamp.org somehow.
In fact thinking about doing things on blog.openstreetmap.org (and generally not doing them) has put me in a state of analysis paralysis lately. My stream-of-conciousness diary entries dried up, and so I'm also rather embarrassed to be nominated for an award for a thing which I've stopped doing!
Of course I also have a new and exciting time sink these days, but I am allowed a few days off from nappy changing to head to State Of The Map Brussels (arriving tonight). I'm looking forward to this immensely. Maybe I'll get into some interesting conversations with belgian beer! If you like my diary entries, maybe I'll write up some of these conversations. There we go... it's motivating people already!
When Mapquest layer disappeared, this was a problem for OpenSnowMap: its cold colors and less detailed style were great to overlay ski pistes onto. But the end of this freely available map forced me to build a simple style with plenty of room for ski pistes: the OpenSnowMap Base Snow Map.
A winter topo map
I used OSM-Bright to start building this style. Using colder colours more suited to a winter map, of course I also added relief. In particular, relief hillshading led me to desaturate highways to avoid they pops out the shadowed side of the hills .
Ski pistes are not rendered on this layer, the OpenSnowMap remains an overlay. In fact, they are rendered on the Base Snow Map with 12 pixels wide transparent labels that forbids other labels to take place where ski pistes from the OpenSnowMap overlay will land.
I want to see it!
This style is only showcased on http://beta.opensnowmap.org for now. The mobile part of the website is shown with 'retina tiles' by default, but you can choose this high-dpi option or not from the menu.
For these mobile-friendly tiles, I choose to render 384px tiles and display them with a 1.5x scale factor. That please my eyes on my own phone and the server seems to be OK with them, so please tell me they also looks good on your phone or tablet.
Of course, Openstreetmap-carto is still available, although without high-res tiles but a simple scaling for the mobile version. Here also let me know what the default should be: I find it more usable with the scaling on my device, although a bit pixelized.
That's great, but ...
Unfortunately, the use of the layer outside OpenSnowMap will be discouraged by referer magic and so on. Also, tiles containing ski pistes are pre-rendered, but not the others. So while the Imposm-powered DB is up-to-date and a few minutes behind Openstreetmap, don't expect super-performances in tile refresh. Yes, 10 minutes so you can check your mapping mistakes and correct them before I take them into account, isn't it clever ?
This new base map won't change much the OpenSnowMap overlay tiles that will remains pretty much the same and updated daily.
State of the Map attendees are coming to Brussels from (at least) 52 countries! The global State of the Map is a unequaled time to come together in person to share experiences from every corner of the world, find common ground, and plan what's next for OpenStreetMap.
Many of us, among the over 400 attendees, are local community organizers. We hold mapping parties, organize local SotMs, even register organizations and sign up as official Local Chapters. I'm excited that we have dedicated time to talk as local communities on Sunday -- during the panel discussion of State of the Local Map and the open discussion of Local Chapters Congress. There's call to have a Local Birds of a Feather. The discussions we have in Brussels will continue with local communities gathering next week in Manila for State of the Map Asia.
Folks like Martijn, Joost, and myself have been talking with OpenStreetMap local community organizers over the past few months, to learn more about what they're doing, motivations, their challenges, and what they need from the global OpenStreetMap community.
What I've found is that local communities are seeking to get more organized to engage more officially with government agencies, universities and other institutions. They find they need financial administration beyond borrowing someone's bank account. While some have seen the value of becoming an official OSM Foundation Local Chapter, there is still lack a clarity to some about the necessity and benefits. Nevertheless, they see a lot of value to learn from others working on similar issues -- everything from legal and administrative issues of starting an organization, to sharing community engagement strategies that work, to amplifying the voices of their community in the global OSM conversation especially for non-English speakers. Regional connections are especially valuable, for working with mappers in similar languages, timezones, and to some extent culture.
I think there are straightforward things we could do here -- like better communication about and between Local Chapters, develop some simple benefits like schwag and templates of core organizational documents, and more support for regional conferences. Just some ideas.
Really looking forward to hearing more about what local communities are up to and what we think we can do together! See you at State of the Map.
I am glad to introduce you Metropolis style. It was developed for Matička Metropolis, a travel agency based in Prague. It aims to be general purpose city plan.
As of today, it's available at Czech portal Openstretmap.cz for general use.
If you are interested in that style feel free to contact me.
Now some pics
Note that tram lines, public transport stops and power lines are visible only in Czech republic.
The Lee Lifeson Art Park — dedicated to Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson of the band Rush — opened on the weekend. I was in the area yesterday evening, so mapped out a rough version with my phone. I may go back to add in more detail today.
This Sunday, we will meet the nominees for the first OSM Award and learn who gained the most votes in each of the six categories, including Mapping and Blogging. 650 mappers have already voted, and if you have not, please head to the awards website and make your choices. All you need is an OpenStreetMap account.
The voting closes on the morning of September 22nd, when the Brussels Maptember begins with two great conferences: HOT Summit and FOSS4G.be. After that we will dive into OSM topics at the State of the Map, and on Sunday, before lightning talks and workshops, we will know the winners.
But for now, there are still ties in some categories, and your vote can decide who will get the award. Do vote now and meet us at the State of the Map!
I hope this isnt a dumb question - but why isn't Minneapolis > St. Paul? I am assuming it is because it is a capital, but I think every other map I have ever seen always has Minneapolis slightly bigger font for the label. Happy Monday
bing shows St. Paul over Minneapolis
There are only a few small areas where I often go and already I seem to have become obsessed with representing them as accurately and fully as possible. Norden Park and Ride is becoming a pet project and I don't even have anything to do with the steam railway that terminates there!
Somewhere, when I first joined OSM, I remember reading a warning to the effect that contributing to OSM is addictive. I'm not an addict, I'm just a frequent user. I can stop at any time I choose. Any time at all. Any time. After this next edit...
A review of the existing data in 5 most populated cities of France was detailed in our previous diary. Through this diary, we will be introducing you all to a handy tool for mapping turn restrictions.
Adding turn restrictions using OSM Navigation Map
OSM navigation map is an open tool that was built to review and add missing data for turn restrictions. It relies on Mapillary as a source to identify the turn restrictions in the detected traffic signages from the street level images captured by the volunteers.
The data team in Mapbox has used this tool for reviewing the existing restrictions and as well adding the missing ones for US cities, 5 cities each in Canada and Germany. The tool assists in reviewing the restrictions easily and quickly.
Detected signage of
only_right_turn restriction in Mapillary
Detected signage of
no_right_turn restriction in Mapillary
Verifying turn restriction with images from Mapillary in OSM Navigation Map
Reviewing turn restriction in OSM Navigation Map
Community participation has already ensured that around 436 turn restrictions across 5 cities (Paris, Marseille, Lyon, Toulouse, and Nice) of France :clap: :tada: . Along with the local knowledge, this tool would be a great companion to improve data in OpenStreetMap for navigation.
If it's your first time mapping turn restrictions, read the guide on mapping turn restrictions using Mapillary to understand different scenarios and special cases. Help us by updating the special cases list for France that would help all community mappers as well our mapping team to be aware of these cases while reviewing turn restrictions.
We would love to collaborate with the community on improving the data in OpenStreetMap by collectively getting feedback on our tools as well as workflow.
As most of us in the team are English speakers, it is difficult for us to translate the guide into French. It would be great if the community members can help us in translating the OSM Navigation Map guide to French and host it on OpenStreetMap wiki or anywhere that would be valuable for local mappers to refer.
Last week, as a part of making OpenStreetMap more navigable, we started updating possible missing turn restrictions in 5 cities of Germany i.e., (Berlin, Stuttgart, Wolfsburg, Munich and Frankfurt), with the help of OSM Navigation map which uses Mapillary detected traffic signs. Around 1900 turn restriction were reviewed in these 5 cities and we managed to add 112 OSM notes where probable missing data was found.
We have received a great response from the community on this task, and as of now, 71 notes are resolved. It would be great if the community could resolve remaining 41 notes to enhance the accuracy of navigation data present on OpenStreetMap.
Here is the list of OSM notes for missing turn restrictions.
We thank the community for all the support. We look forward to more interactions with everyone. Few of our team members will be present at SoTM Brussels this week, catch up with @PlaneMad, @jinalfoflia, @ramyaragupathy, @pratikyadav and @geohacker to talk more on this and the latest data team projects at Mapbox!
From Mapbox Data Team.