Diary Entries in English

Recent diary entries

MAP Cartagena - A pilot project to map informal settlements

Posted by Natalia Arruda on 8 March 2017 in English (English)

I would like to post on OSM's blog today, March 8, International Women's Day, a work coordinated by me using the OSM mapping methodology and tools.

The project was a pilot project was born in 2015 through the initiative of a group of volunteers of the NGO TECHO, in order to respond to the demand made by some of the people of León Island (a community that is in a situation of informality and subnormality. Due to the characteristics of informality and subnormality presented by the settlement, they were identified as the underlying problem entails the lack of all public services. Due to its informality, León Island does not appear in any urban planning system in the city of Cartagena, neither in the IGAC cadastre system nor in the MIDAS platform. Based on this previous analysis, it was decided to cover the issue that the community of León Island is not in any cartographic system. The pilot project thus emerges with the main objective of identifying, locating and geo-referencing; Not only the informal settlement of Leon Island as a whole, but also every street and housing present, conforming this component as an input to the phase of community development. Other objectives of the project were to involve community settlers as a participatory mechanism; Integrate housing (as spatial elements) with data from the Household Characterization Survey (ECH) within a Geographic Information System (GIS); Raise the profile of the community, including its history, describing access to public services and its infrastructure; And finally share the map, data and results generated with the same community and the general public through an online platform.

More about the pilot project you can find here:

Location: El Chagualo, Medellín, Antioquia, 0500, Colombia

What happened to Potlatch 2 ?

Posted by Geofalke on 8 March 2017 in English (English)

ID or JOSM may be useful Map editor software, but I still prefer Potlatch 2 for "landscape painting". For me finding out and correcting the differences between aerial picture and state of the map is really great fun, as Potlatch 2 makes it possible to do the corrections with just a few mouse clicks.

For correcting the edge of a forest or a highway I used to highlight the way and the Shift + Click for a new waypoint at the correct place. Since a few days this no longer is possible, what a pity!

Is there a possibility to restore this feature?

In the current version the Shift + Click can lead to a marked rectangle, and then you cannot avoid zooming in, and later manually zooming out. Very annoying! "Mach's weg!" please!

Best whishes! Geofalke

Mapping coastal villages and wetlands in the Southern Caribbean (Turbo, Colombia) for resilience

Posted by MangleBlanco on 8 March 2017 in English (English)

Turbo is the Southern-most municipality in the Caribbean coast of Colombia, yet poorly known nation- and world-wide. Such invisibility contrasts with the beauty of tall mangroves in wild areas and with the numerous fishermen settled in small villages along a ca. 200km-coastline. In addition, the urban area of Turbo, with nearly 50,000 inhabitants, is sustained by both the services provided by mangroves in the proximity and afar, and most importantly by the small-scale fishery providing over 50 species of fish and shellfish. Turbo is a vibrant small city populated by african-descendants coming from the Pacific (Chocó) region of Colombia, amerindians from the Panamian Darién and the northern Andes, and mestizos from the european arrival. Fishermen and their families by far may account for a 1% of Turbo's population in both rural and urban area.

Despite the foundation nearly two centuries centuries ago, the urban area has sprawled since the 1970's as a consequence of peri-urban settlements promoted by migration from rural areas as a consequence of the armed conflict in Colombia (1,2). Such settlements occurred in lowlands, usually in the intertidal fringe, at expense of the native coastal wetlands (1, 2). Therefore, mangroves and freshwater grasslands and forests were decimated in the vicinity of Turbo. In contrasts, these types of wetlands remain as fringes or large patches in the rural areas, and coexist with small fishing villages.

Despite of this landscape mosaic, both urban and rural inhabitants in the coastal plain are subjected to natural hazards such as erosion, sea surges and flash floods, and are therefore vulnerable to climate variability (1). Indeed, in 2010-2011 this area was severely impacted by La Niña-triggered flooding in the coastal plain of Turbo river and numerous villagers, mostly fishermen and peasants were relocated in provisional shelters (3). After one year, they returned to their homes because permanent relocation plans did not translate into reality. Six years have passed by and both fishermen and city administration forgot about such event, particularly because the region experience a very strong and long drought related with El Niño 2014-2016. Nowadays, the return of La Niña is forecasted but little has been improved in terms of adaptation plans to cope with flooding hazard. Moreover, little has been discussed about the longterm consequences of sea level rise in the area, despite most people live between 0 and 2 m above sea level.

It is urgent to conduct high-resolution mapping with humanitarian objectives in this municipality. It is urgent to map flood-prone areas in both urban and rural settings. It is also urgent to map and assess the role of bioshields provided by mangroves and freshwater wetlands. It is also urgent to map mangroves to halt their destruction. Mangroves in the proximity of Turbo to the North (Bahía El Uno) are strongly impacted by illegal logging (4, 5), and although they have not been reduced in area, they stand as thin trees and their roles as bio-barriers, habitat for wildlife, and nursery for fishes could be compromised (6).

In conclusion, mangroves are key ecosystems for the entire Urabá region, and should be boldly placed on open-source maps. Mangroves should be highlighted as cornerstone to support coastal livelihoods by providing goods and services. Ultimately, coastal wetlands are key elements for the resilience of coupled social-ecological systems, and need to be included in adaptation plans to face climatic variability and climate change, particularly sea level rise (7).


  1. Blanco-Libreros, Juan F. Cambios globales en los manglares del golfo de Urabá (Colombia): entre la cambiante línea costera y la frontera agropecuaria en expansión. Actu Biol [online]. 2016, vol.38, n.104, pp.53-70.

  2. Blanco-Libreros, J.F.; Estrada-Urrea, E.A. Mangroves on the Edge: Anthrome-Dependent Fragmentation Influences Ecological Condition (Turbo, Colombia, Southern Caribbean). Diversity 2015, 7, 206-228. doi:10.3390/d7030206 (






See also popular articles about this region: Visión Total Caribe:

Location: El Chagualo, Medellín, Antioquia, 0500, Colombia

10 000th Changeset

Posted by gormur on 8 March 2017 in English (English)

Just did my 10000th changeset. Yay!

Location: 0.000, 0.000

better URL for updated imagery of Ashgabat

Posted by apm-wa on 8 March 2017 in English (English)

Yslam Karimow köçesi in Turkmenabat

Posted by apm-wa on 8 March 2017 in English (English)

I attended the unveiling of the monument to the late first president of Uzbekistan in Turkmenabat, Turkmenistan on March 7, and got a photo of the street sign attesting to renaming of Arkadag köçesi to Yslam Karimow köçesi.

Location: parahat kiçi etrapça, Üçpunkt etrapçasy, Turkmenabat, Lebap Region, 746100, Turkmenistan

Generating a list of all the cities in the world with Wikipedia links

Posted by PlaneMad on 8 March 2017 in English (English)

A small tutorial on how one can export a CSV of all the cities in the world with their associated Wikipedia and Wikidata pages. This is useful if you want to do some spreadsheet analysis of data from OpenStreetMap.

Overpass Turbo is a great way to quickly extract data from OpenStreetMap by querying tags. An easy way to generate the query is to type "city" or the specific tag "place=city" in the wizard. Since most cities are tagged as just a point node, we can remove the query for ways and relations.

Also instead of the default geojson output, you can use the CSV output format and specify the the data columns to export. The end query looks like this:


( node["place"="city"] ({{bbox}}); );

Try the live query (takes around 2 minutes to run) | View results

The same query with a geojson output gives the map view

You might also be interested in reading about how one can query a similar list from Wikidata.

Overpass queries I should turn into maproulette challenges

Posted by CloCkWeRX on 8 March 2017 in English (English)

Most Restaurants/Cafes & Shops; etc will have a web presence, sharing their address, opening hours, etc.

Named Restaurants/Cafes or Shops without a Website

Named Restaurants/Cafes or Shops with Website but no opening hours:

Named Restaurants/Cafes or Shops with Website but no street name:

Running for HOT Chair in 2017

Posted by mikelmaron on 7 March 2017 in English (English)

I'm running again for Chair of Voting Members for Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team.

My outlook on the role is similar to last year.

I've been busy with the Governance Working Group, and the Election Committee -- for both the new member nominations and Board / Chair elections. These seem to be going smoothly! Working on these has helped further refine our processes and documents. We now have a new member "Welcome Pack".

Happy to continue with this responsibility next year. Please get in touch if you have any questions or ideas for the role of the Chair.

import geonames data

Posted by mustafakamil on 7 March 2017 in English (English)

how to import geonames data to JOSM (SD.txt)

Location: Khartoum 3, نادي الاسرة, Khartoum, al-Khartum, 11114, Sudan

Mapathon to import height data for San Francisco buildings

Posted by Chetan_Gowda on 7 March 2017 in English (English)

Maptime SF/MaptimeOAK and Mapbox SF are hosting a Mapathon on March 14th, Tuesday at 6:30 pm PST to import building heights. Please RSVP to SF OpenStreetMap Community to be a part of this awesome project.

1200px-sanfrancisco_from_twinpeaks_dusk_mc Image from Wikipedia

San Francisco has building footprints, Points of Interest, and traffic signals for the entire city in OpenStreetMap. All these map features makes San Francisco as one of the well mapped cities on OpenStreetMap. In 2016, the San Francisco city Government published LiDAR-derived building footprints that include both geometry and height information. One of the goals of the SF OpenStreetMap community is to add height information to existing buildings in OpenStreetMap.

To jump in quickly into the project, do check the OpenStreetMap wiki to know more and talk to the community on Gitter to get involved. Also, make sure to create a dedicated OSM import account before jumping into the task and post it here.

Tasking manager link

Using a SmartPrime7 Smartphone for Tracking

Posted by alexkemp on 7 March 2017 in English (English)

It has been a year (or thereabouts) since I obtained a Vodaphone SmartFirst6 to replace my dearly-beloved Motorola L7 when it finally died after ~15 years due to the central bevel suddenly detaching. That caused me to come across OSM & OSMTracker & hence the last 12 months updating the map.

The Vodaphone SmartFirst6 was only £20 GBP together with a PAYG SIM. It was a good intro for an Android newbie who doesn't play games, although a little slow & with a limited camera. Although the SIM was locked to Vodaphone, the phone allowed a £25 GBP 64GB microSD card to be fitted (which could be mounted via USB connection to Linux/Windows) plus allowed .apk files to be transferred to the SD-Card & then installed into the phone. So, it would have been £100 GBP a couple of years ago and really, at £20, who can complain?

F-Droid supplied OSMTracker 0.6.11 FoC (2015-08-21 & still the latest ready-compiled version) (see the wiki for compile instructions on the latest update). I make use of the GPS breadcrumbs (basic tracker feature), voice-notes & photos, and that is it.

The SmartFirst6 runs Android 4.4.2 (custom Kit-Kat) and I was worried about the lack of security updates in addition to a lousy camera. The SmartPrime7 runs Android 6.0.1 (Marshmallow) and should be good for now (it was released last December 2016) (£65 GBP + £10 GBP for PAYG credit). Here are a couple of issues I've managed to overcome:–

  1. Unlocking Vodaphone Locked Phones
    No problem if using a phone on at least PAYG for at least 30 days. I got a code back the same day.
  2. Copy Contact details from old SIM to new SIM
    Fiddly, but possible (in short: export as a .vcf file; copy via computer to new phone; import .vcf file)
  3. Transfer files between Linux & Android-6
    This boils down to:– install gMTP under Debian & use MTP in the phone. My main problem was the very short (5 secs) time that the phone display was on before then cutting off my connection. The Android-4 method is much, much simpler, but this allows full access to the phone storage as well as the SD-Card.
  4. Parse error – there is a problem parsing the Package
    I'd lost the original OSMTracker APK used in my SmartFirst6. The site I re-downloaded it from turned out to have a badly-compiled download, and I only got clear of the error when I downloaded from F-Droid (links above).. I also needed to set:–

Settings | Security =
Unknown Sources, allows installation of apps from unknown sources

First photos (7 March 2017):

The SmartPrime7 camera is >2x the resolution of the SmartFirst6 (8MP cf 3MP). I'm using the camera in 16:9 (6MP) mode and here are 2 large buildings — new & old — from near the Nottingham City Centre to show how (to my eyes) the new camera is stunningly better than the old (cf any of my previous diary entries):–

Union State student accommodation:– Union State student accommodation

Christ-Citadel Christian Centre; former St. Catherine's Church:– Christ-Citadel Christian Centre

The one downside is that it now takes twice as long to upload the pictures (each is ~2MB). In addition, whilst the SmartPrime7 is able to both acquire & show the Heading (compass bearing) whilst tracking (the SmartFirst6 was unable to do either), it does NOT add that into the photo EXIF meta-data, which is damn annoying.

Contra-Indications 18 March 2017

The phone seemed good & I was pleased with it... until I used it in the rain.

The battery was bigger & thus I could track for longer (the SmartFirst6 only lasted for ~2 hours whilst tracking; tracking sucks the battery harder than any other activity with the phone). Only the 4th outing with the SmartPrime7 & the damn thing stopped taking photos & recording sound after 3 hours, the last 2 of which were hard rain. There was plenty of battery left but no notification of a problem. I found out only when I downloaded everything.

Life went downhill after that. Every function began behaving strangely. Taking the back off, it was wet inside. Now another problem became apparent...

The battery is non-user replaceable. A notice inside says that “This is a non-removable battery. Attempting to remove this battery will damage your device & invalidate your warranty.” The Internet says there are water-detection strips below, and I'm sure that the whole arrangement is to detect false warranty-claims for non-water damage after someone drops it in the bath. However, the danger with water is of thin-film transfer (the method by which water gets to the top of 250-foot trees) and a non-removable battery increases that enormously.

1 day of de-humidifying within a plastic takeaway box with rice (that is a cleaned-out box & fresh, uncooked rice, you understand) improved it a little, but not a lot. Another day of the same treatment almost completely fixed it. I'm giving it another 24 hours and then hopefully I'll get a fully functioning machine back.

A smartphone that cannot function in the rain is useless in England.

Slow Recovery 22 March 2017

An actual field test showed that it will work and produce useful results, but still has fundamental problems. These are mainly that the screen will not show at full brightness; clicking on functions is a guessing game. Trying to use the camera in daylight is an exercise in frustration since the preview is almost invisible.

I cannot find any examples of folks removing the battery for this model on YouTube, and am put off by clips of other non-removable batteries being removed! The brightness keeps flickering, and I'm convinced that the issue is of water trapped in thin-films that needs removing, so the camera is back within a sealed box with more rice. What a PITA.

Got a Replacement 25 March 2017

The key here was the Consumer Rights Act 2015 (a UK act governing rights on goods purchased), plus to take the smartphone back (with the receipt) within 30 days, which gives an automatic right to a refund on the purchase price (or, as I asked for, a new replacement - a bit of a faff to re-setup, but the original had an odd display problem — very dark in daylight; previous screens showing underneath as if the top screen had an alpha applied; OSMTracker stopped working at about 4,000 GPS tracks, whereas it easily went >10,000 on the SmartFirst6).

The techie at the store had verified the day before that the moisture meter had not been triggered (it is a very small circle in the plate above the battery, but below the external plastic back, which turns pink if water is detected). I did not even need to quote the legislation. I took in the phone together with original box & receipt & he immediately offered me a refund. Sorted, just as long as there is not an endemic issue with this model.


Vodafone are very naughty with their Data charges.

Settings | Data usage allows Mobile data to be switched OFF, which means zero high-charges for data (Vodafone charge £2 GBP per day per 50MB, although they offer monthly plans which are better value). However, just switching on the new phone with a SIM inside means that it will make contact with the internet & download 30MB, whether you want it to or not.

Leave the SIM out until you set it up with data switched OFF if you are as stingy as me.

Location: Lace Market, St Ann's, Nottingham, East Midlands, England, United Kingdom

Other world projections

Posted by giacomo faiella on 6 March 2017 in English (English)

Hi, my name is giacomo faiella.

I design peculiar maps of the world.

i would like to know if is possible to create a way to see different projections of the planet Earth? As a default map, OpenStreetMap has used the mercator projection, just like google maps. It would be interesting to have the opportunity to choose from maps with different projections, perhaps in the form of a list, and be able to make transitions between one map and another.

like this example

If this is possible, it would be fantastic to integrate "artistic" projections of the world as well; maps of parallel worlds to navigate your way around the planet. I would like to start a work team to create this possibility, in perfect creative-commons style. I have 4 world maps that I designed and that are the exact example of what i mean, and could make the base to start this project.

1) is the "Planisphere Palindrome" and is readable upside up or upside down, like an ambigram. You can see that land masses and oceans have exactly the same shape.

digital version

etching version

Corresponding Points:
Australia = Mediterranean Sea,
Africa = Pacific Ocean,
Asia = Indian Ocean,
America = Atlantic Ocean,
Antarctica = Arctic Ocean,
India = Bay of Bengal,
Indochina = Arabian Sea,
Sumatra = Caspian Sea,
Borneo = Black Sea,
Philippines = Red Sea,
New Zealand = Baltic and North Sea,
Japan = African Great Lakes,
Madagascar = Sea of Okhotsk,
Tasmania = Adriatic Sea,
Kamchatka = Mozambique Channel,
Sri Lanka = Ganges Delta,
Antille = Amazon River.

Two Focus or Fixed Points: One in India and the other in Venezuela

article about this map

2) "Fractaland" where every part of the world is made up of the entire world.


3) "Morph World" where the eastern hemisphere has the same shape as the western hemisphere.


Examples of Twinned Areas: Australia = Greenland, Africa = South America,
Europe = Central America,
Asia = North America,
Madagascar = Peninsula Antarctica,
New Zealand = United Kingdom,
Tasmania = Iceland,
Fenno-Scandinavia = Baja California Peninsula,
Turkey = Florida,
Italy = Yucatan Peninsula,
Greece = Mississipi River Delta,
Borneo = Baffin Island,
New Guinea = Ellesmere Island,
Japan = Victoria + Banks Islands,
Philippines = Sverdrup Islands,
Sumatra = Newfoundland,
Sicily + Sardinia + Corsica = Cuba + Hispaniola + Jamaica,
Strait of Gibraltar = Panama Canal.

4) is called Pangaeahedron - the dimensional drift and is still work in progress. This is a link to the version 1.0. It is my most recent work on a world map, with a similar logic behind it.


You can see when the map is closed, it is a smooth globe of an extreme pangaea, i.e. just a landmass without oceans. When you open the globe, the surface becomes an azhimutal projection with oceans, seas, rivers and also mountains (this is why "dimensional drift). A history of the Earth from a proto-globe without oceans to the present flat-map disposition of continents with seas.

The connecting thread between these maps is the coincidences that link two or more areas together, it would be nice to find a way to highlight these connections between two different points on the planet Earth. It could be a concrete cartographic concept to create a twinning effect between peoples that are generally distant and give us the chance to visualize new brotherhoods.

You can see all of these maps on [pata-atlas web site](

Thank you for your time, giacomo faiella

OSM & government, in Lithuania

Posted by joost schouppe on 6 March 2017 in English (English)

When OpenStreetMap started, open geodata was basically unavailable. Some governments were quicker than others to release their data. And so some places had huge imports from the start. Whether that was a good idea or not is slowly becoming irrelevant: the map is too full for big new imports anyway. Imports are ever more exercises in conflation: merging sources and using them to validate and improve existing OSM data. The good news is that it means that often the same tools for the "initial" import can be used for keeping the data up to date. Continues synchronization between datasets changes the relation between data provider and OSM.

For a government, a complete and reliable OSM becomes a more valid tool for their projects. The synchronization processes we set up, can form the basis for an extra quality assurance (QA) channel for governments. It might even convince some agencies that there is little to be won by managing some of their data on their own.

To try and capture this changing relation, I started a thread on the talk mailing list. Mikel suggested creating a Wiki page on the subject: here it is. Meanwhile, several people have improved upon it!

During the course of the research for that page, I met Tomas Straupis. I wanted to share what he told me about what they do exactly with government data, and what their relationship is with the government.

Interview with Tomas Straupis

Here's a general idea what we're doing in Lithuania.

Government has datasets d1, d2... dn. OSM has one big dataset O which could be split into datasets o1, o2... om. We take datasets dx and oy which could be mapped (have similar data, like placenames, roads, lakes, rivers, etc.)

Automated importing to either direction is impossible (or not wanted by both sides). Government datasets need strict accountability (sources, documents) and responsibility. OSM has different data and simply overwriting it with government data would be bad in a lot of ways.

So the way integration between OSM and government (and actually any other datasets) is done is by synchronisation - checking for differences and taking action (mostly manual) on them on both datasets. By doing a comparison both government and OSM datasets are improved. The point here is that government datasets usually use official (document) source to update data. OSM uses local knowledge to update data. None of these methods are perfect, so synchronisation/comparison helps to get most/best of both. (as a separate note: here comes OSM strength that everything is in one layer - it is much harder to have a road going through a lake or building or having a street A with address B along it. Government datasets are usually separate and controlled by different institutions, so doing such topology checks is much more difficult there)

For this to work government must open datasets and appoint a working contact point where information about problems in government dataset could be sent and there this information is ACTUALLY used and feedback given.

Do you have more info on the projects, and the software/queries you use?

All info is in Lithuanian... Maybe google translate can help with the links to Lithuanian blog site I will provide below (if not - just tell me I will write the general idea in English).

All OSM data is imported to postgresql database using osm2pgsql and that is used for comparison/synchronisation.

We're doing two types of comparison/synchronisation: 1. POI (point data, for some types of polygons centroid could be used) 2. Road (multi-vector data)

For POI synchronisation we have an ugly but functional universal comparison mechanism. We convert external data to xml file with lat, lon and some properties (or external source provides us information in xml for example via web-service). Then we provide mapping of this external data to OSM data. So having external data, mapping and OSM data we can create reports of differences.

Try automatic translating these two entries to get a general idea:

To compare road data, road shapes files are loaded to postgresql using shp2pgsql and then some queries are executed to find differences. Once again general idea is in this blog which you can try to translate:

So basically we use postgresql/postgis and php. If you have more specific questions - I'm ready to answer them or send the code, just it is a dirty code as I'm a google copy/paste "programmer"... :-)

Does the government use your input, and how? Is there something structural? Or just mailing them and hoping they care?

Lithuania is a small country, everybody knows everybody :) Now we occasionally drink beer with "government" guys working with gis data. So we know they do change the data. They also give us feedback which data sets are "more important" for them, so we can prioritise comparing those. This way both sides are happy and thankful for help.

Additionally each month we take new/updated government data and do new comparison, so we can see that data has actually been updated.

From more or less "legal" perspective. This central government agency for gis data allows submitting error reports online for registered users (registration is free and open to anybody - - created according to EU directive on spatial data). And they must check and give feedback in 20 days. We (OSM) are in somewhat different level - we mail directly to responsible group. One of the reasons for that is that they physically cannot fix all errors we report in 20 days, sometimes there are too many of problems, additionally they know report comes from a "trusted" source.

As per "structure". For point type geometry (for example place names) we currently create a google doc online, where both sides write comments and status of errors. When everything is fixed - we take new updated government data and recreate that google doc.

For roads it is per-case mailing of coordinates and notes... But there is no reason why that could not be done in more "structural" way...

Maybe important point here is that OSM data could have some "bad/incorrect" data entered by mappers with not enough experience. And we do not want to make government gis people to sort/filter out such errors. So we go through all errors ourselves and only send those, which we think are really errors. This is the main reason why we cannot simply "automatically" run queries and send result to government people. There are no "technical/IT" problems to send mismatches automatically.

About amount of work

Initial comparisons of a specific dataset usually produces a large number of differences. Some of those are due to actual differences, some are because of different ways of entering data. So initial amount of work is usually high: both for updating data as well as fine-tuning comparison rules. After that only small amount of work is anticipated, because comparison simply notifies one side about the change in another sides data.

A note from Andrius Balčiūnas, Head of IT departament at GIS-Centras

Georeferenced data is created from ortophoto, but data changes much more often (than ortophotograpy is updated, currently each 4 years in Lithuania). OSM community notices the changes much faster. Therefore collaboration with OSM and their data usage for error checking, allows us to achieve higher data quality and relevancy. As this data is later used in national registries, cadastres, information systems - OSM community helps not only to improve the specific data set, but the whole national spacial data infrastructure content quality. Important thing to note here is that such a collaboration means that even small road segment or other improvement of OSM data by a community member could later appear in official government data.

A note on the ODbL license, and dealing with it. Government can use our error reports to start their own mapping process, but they can't just copy our features. Do you know what they do at your government services?

Two points here:

  1. Government is not using/copying any features from OSM. They get reports about problems and this simply attracts their attention on specific features in their datasets. By using their own sources they fix the problem. It cannot be done in any other way, because all changes/all data in official dataset must have an approved/reliable source. OSM triggers the process, OSM does not give any data.

  2. Any database consists of numerous facts (features/records). Only the whole database can be protected by law. Single facts cannot be protected. If any database is publicly accessible, anybody can look at some facts (place name, street name, hotel name etc.) in that database. Then those facts become the facts they know/have in their brain. They can use it to update/insert such data in any other database irrespective of the permissions of original database. I'm not a lawyer. This is what I've heard from lawyers here in Lithuania. So in practice this means I can take this and that from ANY publicly accessible database (even google), until I do not take "too much" of the database that it is not just "some facts", but "a considerable part of the database". The big question here is only what is "considerable part of the database"...

P.S. 2nd point makes map "easter eggs" almost pointless...

OSM2go is still alive

Posted by Dakon on 5 March 2017 in English (English)

OSM2go has always been my favorite editor when I'm doing live mapping. Even if I have a Jolla 1 meanwhile I still carry around my N900 for the mapping things. There have been quite a few things that annoyed me nevertheless, like when I wanted to apply the tags of the last object to the current one it would ask if I want to overwrite the current tags. Even if there were none. So one day in April 2013 I sat down and hacked something together that would just fix that. Then I tried sending them to AMDmi3, who forked OSM2go on GitHub to give it some love. I failed to actually attach the patches, so nothing happened.

At the beginning of May 2016, I already had created an account on GitHub to throw some PRs on rurseekatze to beat OpenRailwayMap into shape. I found my old OSM2go patches on my disk and decided to finally get them upstream.

It took a few weeks before they were accepted, but then AMDmi3 probably feared that I would cause him more work with PRs, and he decided to just give me push access. Guess what, I did some commits.

Things have changed a bit since then: I have reworked the internal logic to use C++ instead of C. Using a std::map to map from an object id to it's contents is just way more efficient than have an unsorted single linked list of them, with an additional cache for faster lookup. Sometimes this also creates additional opportunities to improve code, especially as the original code was extremely inefficient and could have been reduced to only run one loop even with the old C code. Those changes reduced the memory usage by several MB on larger projects, which is a big win on a device with only 256 MiB of RAM like the N900. Rewriting the track parser to not keep the whole XML in memory while parsing a GPX track reduced the time to open one of my projects 223 to 24 seconds. The presets menu can now work with nested folder, the presets (derived from JOSM ones) have been updated, when defining the area for a project you can now see the areas of the other projects and so on: I'm quite happy with what I now have.

And 2 weeks ago I finally was able to solve a mystery that bugged me for quite a while: why did HDYC only show JOSM and Potlatch as the editors I used? A few years ago I did quite some changes directly from my N900 using OSM2go, so what was happening there? Turned out that this had been broken ever since OSM2go added support for API 0.6, but it's finally fixed and indeed HDYC now shows OSM2go again.

Just 2 questions remain: will I ever manage to build a Qt5 version of OSM2go so I can use it on my Jolla and do not need to carry around 2 phones all the time? And is anyone besides me actually using this?


Posted by Bri1542 on 4 March 2017 in English (English)

Hello I'm new

Copernicus Sentinel's TCI

Posted by AkuAnakTimur on 3 March 2017 in English (English)

... which stands for True Colour Imagery.

It's really wonderful! I used to download all separate three visible bands and took significant time to make them into RGB ones. Because I lack the hardware and skills to georeference them properly using suitable applications, I had to rely on Mapwarper('s precious bandwidth and storage). Very pleased with that: now I could use it, like, almost in an instant.

Now I can't wait for the launch of the second Sentinel 2 satellite l̶a̶u̶n̶c̶h̶, and I'm hoping it will be a̶ successful l̶a̶u̶n̶c̶h̶.

EDIT: OMG, my English; or what Malaysians would say, "oh my English"

Deteriorating Bing aerial imagery. - Mount Arrowsmith, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada

Posted by Robert Copithorne on 3 March 2017 in English (English)

Referring to the OSM map of part of BLK 1324S on Mt Arrowsmith / Mt Cokely at the location

Previous versions of Bing aerial imagery available through Java OSM editor clearly showed a harvested area and related roads surrounding the reference point, which were mapped and tagged as farmland. Tree farm that is, a concept with legal meaning in British Columbia.

Current available versions do not show the harvested area, indicating a change in the aerial photos, possibly to an earlier date.

Mapbox satellite views of the same area clearly show the harvested area.

What has happened? Why the change in Bing Satellite imagery? An explanation is desired, and a revision to Bing aerial imagery if necessary.

Geely calls for relaxation of China mapping laws

Posted by ika-chan! on 2 March 2017 in English (English)

In a bid to speed development of self-driving cars, Geely has called on the Chinese Government to relax strict laws on mapping (Reuters, 2 March 2017).

This is relevant to OpenStreetMap, because the Surveying and Mapping Law bans all private surveying and mapping activities in mainland China.

The law means that OpenStreetMap is illegal in mainland China, and there have been cases where casual mappers have been prosecuted (see WikiProject China on OpenStreetMap Wiki).

Location: Dongcheng, Dongcheng District, Beijing, 100010, China

this is interesting

Posted by FKC2004 on 2 March 2017 in English (English)

I didn't know you can do diary entries on here.....

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