Diary Entries in English

Recent diary entries

Taipei Meetup Results - PTX Public Transport Exchange Platfrom Linestring Transformed into Easily Handle GeoJson

Posted by Supaplex on 13 February 2018 in English (English)

Taiwan Department of Transport's public transport exchange platform PTX is quite good on public transport data. It integrates different transport authorities data, for example Taipei City Public Transport Office, New Taipei City Transportation Department, or Directorate General of Highways, bus stop and bus line data. But the export line data from PTX is using Microsoft oData LineString format, programmers.are not familiar with.

But in yesterday's Taipei Meetup, the keyholder of MozSpace Taipei MingTsay use his ability to help us. He lived deme writing code after discussing with him. He transform the LineString into GeoJson using PHP.

The record is written down on Hackpad]( The program that using PHP code is here

The next day I saw the JavaScript Version. MingTsay is quite good at coding. He worked very fast to rewrite to code into other language. Thanks to his effect of his time spending, we could use his program to view the bus line, and view the lineString. I could edit OpenStreetMap bus line at the same time, using the output LineString as GeoJson for reference.

Location: Dazhi, 永安里, Zhuzilin, Zhongshan District, Taipei, 10465, ROC


Posted by Horza on 12 February 2018 in English (English)

I've been outlining places that haven't been outlined before and tidying up work done by others where lines aren't straight or buildings aren't squared off where they should be. There's effectively an endless supply of both types of work.

What's it best to focus on? Do people have preferences? That said, doing more of both has definitely helped with my workflow and knowledge/aptitude with the tools available.

Also, is there a place for open questions like this? I have so many questions about best practice that the wiki doesn't answer or has ambiguous answers too.

Hospitals in Bosnia

Posted by michalfabik on 12 February 2018 in English (English)

The other day I noticed that there's an absurdly large number of hospitals mapped in certain countries, including doctors' offices, clinics, dentists' offices, nursing homes, research institutes, pharmacies, even vets' offices. Over the course of several days, I cleaned up Bosnia, leaving only true hospitals (i.e. provides inpatient care, consists of several specialized clinics, usually has the word "hospital" in the official name), and retagged everything else as appropriate. Here's an image of hospitals in the former Yugoslavia with Bosnia cleaned up and the rest left untouched:

comparison of hospital density in Bosnia and the rest of Yugoslavia(full size)

Location: Velika Broda, Zenica, City of Zenica, Zenica-Doboj Canton, 72260, B&H

Project-Idea : Custom data updater for mobile app

Posted by Shrini on 12 February 2018 in English (English) is a good mobile app (Free Software) for navigation and adding Places (POI – Point of Interest) to

It uses offline data, to provide smooth user experience. OsmContributor, OSMAnd are other few android app, to contribute to OSM by adding POI. But we can feel the lag on navigating the map as they fetch real time data on every move over the map. is super fast. But because it uses only offline data. The provides updates for the data once in a month or twice.

We can see the POIs added by us. But, when we run a mapathon kind of events, many volunteers will be roaming around a city. Sometimes, they come to a street, where the POIs are added by someone else already.

When you are using for adding POI, we can not get the POIs added by other volunteers immediately. We have to wait for the updates provided by the team.

This leads to repeated adding of same POI many times. Even verifying for the same POI using other app is boring.

Checked for the team for providing options to update the data whenever required. But it is not on their roadmap.

Discussed this with “OpenStreetMap Asia” telegram group. Erwin Olario replied with few ideas. uses mwm format for the data can export data in mwm format gives steps on how to download latest data and use with

All we need now, is a mobile app to download the desired data from hotosm and place in the proper path of

We can develop this as a separate mobile app and distribute to all.

If this is done, anyone using can click another app, and update the osm data whenever required.

Reply here / Contact me if you are interested in doing this as a Free/OpenSource Project.

My mail id –

Location: East Tambaram, Tambaram, Thiruvallur district, Tamil Nadu, 600059, India

My OSM Story

Posted by LindyT on 12 February 2018 in English (English)

I have had this account since 2015. Why so few edits in comparison?

I first heard about OSM from my geography advisor in 2015, so I created an account to see what it was. I went to an event to support aid efforts in Nepal. Then I left it alone for a year.

In 2016 I heard about State of the Map US, where I was formally introduced to OpenStreetMap. It was in Seattle near where I went to school, and I took the opportunity to volunteer. The first night I went to a social where the whiteboard said "Women in Technology" and the feeling was eerie. I wasn't in the Dept. of Engineering at UW, nor was I conditioned to see myself as a STEM major. I talked to the other women there and I was intimidated, to say the least. I spent the conference with an open mind. I managed some of the interactions on the SOTM-US Twitter account as part of my volunteer gig. Mostly I just listened and learned.

The following autumn I changed my geography track to GIS. I wanted to know more about it. There I was, building on GIS I had learned the previous year, finding my path, and designing projects of significance to me. I was finally one of those career woman who spent all night coding and lived on Starbucks. And that was all I could ever want. I was using OpenStreetMap's data for more of my projects. One in particular, I had to find accessible walkways on my campus and OSM had the best terrain maps for those. Still, I wasn't making edits like I should, and I wasn't getting involved out of intimidation.

When I won a scholarship to the next conference by writing about how I utilized OSM, I knew I had to get involved. I talked to more and more people, then I took the plunge and actually started editing on my own. It was great! I was contributing to a program I knew everything about!

Moral of the story: don't let your own imposter syndrome keep you from trying things out. You can know everything in theory, but the application is most important.

Running for OpenStreetMap US Board

Posted by iandees on 12 February 2018 in English (English)

I'm running for OpenStreetMap United States board in the upcoming board elections.

This past year the board worked with the local organizing team to put together a great State of the Map US in Boulder and made progress on hiring an executive director. But I was a little disappointed with how quiet we were in other aspects of the community.

This coming year, I'm looking forward to hiring an excellent executive director so we can rely on a full-time person to help us move forward with some of the tasks OpenStreetMap US has been working towards for years. Supporting and building a community of enthusiastic mappers requires a lot of time and the board has struggled to do it in recent years. As I mentioned in last year's statement, my hope is that by hiring and supporting a talented individual to help us we can look forward to a stronger community in a shorter amount of time.

I'm also looking forward to finishing off some other important pieces that the board has been working on for quite some time. We have a draft policy that makes our existing habit of supporting mapping parties through food and drink sponsorship clear. I'd like to see us get feedback from the community and vote that into a real policy with a clear way for community members to request reimbursement. We also have similar policies for reimbursing the cost of community tools like Meetup, and for travel to speak about OpenStreetMap at local events. I'd also like to see us revamp our website so that resources like this are more obvious to our community members.

My time on the OpenStreetMap US board has shown that it's easy to overestimate what we can get done as just the board. I think our job as the board should be to enable others to do the community building and to make it easier for others to participate and be excited about OpenStreetMap. The board itself doesn't have the time to do these things itself, but it does have time and resources to help others. I can help do that with the rest of OpenStreetMap US if you make sure you're a member and vote for me as a board member.

Location: Longfellow, Minneapolis, Hennepin County, Minnesota, 55406, United States of America

The Mysterious Bus

Posted by contrapunctus on 11 February 2018 in English (English)

Huh. Didn't realize I took a 7 day break from mapping. The notes in my OsmAnd [1] are piling up :)

Today I learned that I can map route relations for minibuses (like those Metro feeder buses!) and "share taxis" (or as they're locally called, "Gramin Seva"). These don't show up on Google Maps - I hope they give OSM something of an advantage.

It's funny how, even though public transport is one of my mapping interests, I've never yet done the "travel the whole of a bus route with GPS and maybe camera" dance - though of course I recognize that it's not only (probably) more efficient, but also inevitable. Currently I just map bus stops, note their listed routes in a note=, and add them to bus routes in JOSM. The few bus routes I've actually traveled on I mapped ages ago, and even those I cannot claim to know the entirety of. More recently, I've started noting down (in OsmAnd) what buses I've seen, what their boards say their destination is, and (if I'm near a turn) if or where they turn - this has enriched my work quite a bit.

There remain, of course, buses I've rarely if ever seen. The most notorious of these, I would say, is the "LTD". I have no memory of ever seeing one, and yet it is listed on bus stops all over the city! [2] Fortunately, each stop is little by little adding to its route. Here we are, with the result of adding 23 stops to one variant - screenshot of JOSM showing bus routes mapped so far in Delhi, with the incomplete route for the LTD highlighted. The route is taking shape.

[1] Local, deliberately not uploaded, with the intent of being added using JOSM later

[2] Maybe I shouldn't be adding it, then, if it's not visible on the ground?

Quick question about OSM and Discord

Posted by Yoshinion on 11 February 2018 in English (English)

Discord is a well-known community server platform. It's kinda like a newer, more souped-up version of IRC, and it claims itself as a replacement for Skype and TeamSpeak. Does OSM have a Discord server, official or otherwise?

Research within the HOT & MM community

Posted by Mandarine Coconia on 11 February 2018 in English (English)

I am carrying out my third year undergrad research project on the humanitarian OSM community. If you saw a questionnaire about motivations and contribution frequency, that was probably me!

I am in the process of writing up, but I am happy to share my data - it's all in a numbers/excel document so I can't attach it here but if you're interested I can email it. If you have any questions about my research please ask me - it's still quite vague, but it's basically about contributor motivations and communication between contributors and NGOs. As well as the questionnaire, I conducted some interviews with NGO workers that use OSM data, and I aim to see whether there is some kind of a disconnect between perceived and real effects of the data, as well as whether a potential lack of communication has an effect on mapping frequency (it doesn't seem to).

It's a 10 000 word project so I really don't have scope to include all my data, which is a shame, so if you want to do something with it please do!

Link to photo

Posted by deptho on 11 February 2018 in English (English)

Just added first link to Mapillary photo. Looks like it could be useful.

Location: Knights Wood, Sherwood, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, South East, England, TN2 3GS, United Kingdom

First foray into editing

Posted by geostatue on 10 February 2018 in English (English)

My first foray into editing was adding some house outlines in my neighborhood.

AI With Satellite Images for OpenStreetMap

Posted by jremillard on 10 February 2018 in English (English)

The AI/neural network/deep learning/machine learning wave is ready to touch OpenStreetMap. Modern machine learning algorithms require a lot of data, and we have lots of data. OSM is going to be a natural place that open source, machine learning algorithms development happens.

Exciting and useful machine learning projects are possible today, using only the OSM database. For example, statistical based editor presents, changeset anomaly detection, import changeset detection, and smart auto tag/value suggestions are possible with just the OSM database.

To open things up, we need additional data sources like overhead satellite images. However, satellites and airplanes are quite expensive. Microsoft/Bing and Mapbox purchase a license to use other companies images, such as DigitalGlobe. They are restricted by the upstream license on what they can offer to the OSM community. For example, when Facebook wanted to use machine learning to map all the roads in Thailand they had to purchase a license for the images. The license did allow them to share the images with anybody. The DeepOSM project handled the image issue by using public NAIP images. However, the NAIP images are not ideal for OSM, the resolution is only 1 meter, and coverage is just the US.

Over the past two months, both Microsoft/Bing and Mapbox have completed reviews of their satellite image licensing terms and determined that they are capable of offering their image layers for nonprofit machine learning projects whose goal is to improve OSM. The great news is that if they want to support Machine learning for OSM they can.

Microsoft/Bing has gone ahead and made it official with an email to the talk-us list.

Through one on one communications with Mapbox, they have asserted that their standard terms of service allow this use case as well. However, they are worried about the load on the servers, so for now, they would like to grant permission on a case by case basis. This is reasonable request given how data-intensive the algorithms are.

Today, there is no technical reason preventing the volunteer OSM community from utilizing machine learning to accelerate the project. Basically, anything that is visible in a satellite image is now going to be able to be identifiable via software at the same level of accuracy as an “armchair” mapper: baseball fields, tennis fields, basketball courts, soccer fields, football fields, bridges, solar panel farms, roads, driveways, parking lots, buildings, lakes, rivers, wetlands, rail roads, water tanks, gas stations, running tracks, vineyards, fields, forests, sand, jetties, lighthouses, airports, playgrounds, fences, wind turbines, pools, ski lift, road lanes, traffic lights, graveyard, power lines, etc.

Machine learning algorithms will obviously be used more often in future imports and automated edits. However, there are other high-value places that machine learning algorithms could be utilized by the project.

For example:

  • Maproulette tasks could be generated that highlight where older OSM data doesn’t match newer satellite images.
  • A changeset monitor could be written that compares real-time edits to satellite images and adds changeset comments for edits that look unusual.
  • OSM editors could suggest tags based satellite images.
  • OSM editors could suggest/snap geometries based on the satellite images.
  • OSM editors QA tools could integrate satellite images into the validation checks.
  • Satellite offsets could be determined automatically by using GPS traces.
  • Using previous DWG and community reverts and redactions, wildly bad changesets could be quickly noticed and reviewed by the community.
  • Overpass queries could include features extracted from satellite images.

It will take some time for all of this to get implemented, but I am sure that it will happen eventually. If you are a developer and this kind of thing interests you, the field is wide open!


RIPTA bus routes (entry 2)

Posted by azsr on 9 February 2018 in English (English)

I'm reposting this, since it's been a long time since I've updated the last one.

Probably fine

Still need bus stops and platforms.

Needs conversion

Most of these have the one relation running both ways.

Not done yet

  • Key Corridor (red): 20 Elmwood/Airport, 28 Broadway/Hartford, 31 Cranston Street, 56 Chalkstone Avenue, 67 Bellevue/Mansions/Salve Regina University
  • Local Bus (blue): 3 Warwick Avenue, 6 Prairie Avenue, 17 Dyer/Pocasset/Westminster, 18 Union Avenue, 19 Plainfield/Westminster, 21 Reservoir/Garden City/CCRI Warwick, 22 Pontiac Avenue, 30 Arlington/Oaklawn, 32 East Providence/Wampanoag Trail, 34 East Providence, 35 Rumford/Newport Avenue, 49 Camp Street, 51 Charles Street, 55 Admiral Street/Providence College, 57 Smith Street, 58 Mineral Spring/North Providence, 63 Broadway on Aquidneck, 71 Pawtucket Avenue/Broad Street, 72 Weeden Street, 73 Fairlawn/CCRI Lincoln/Twin River, 75 Dexter Street/Lincoln Mall, 76 Central Avenue, 78 Beverage Hill, 80 Armistice Boulevard, 87 Fairmount/Walnut Hill
  • Regional and Express (purple): 8x Jefferson Boulevard, 9x Pascoag, 10x North Scituate, 12x Arctic/Route 117, 54 Lincoln/Woonsocket, 59x North Smithfield/Lincoln, 60 Providence/Newport, 61x Tiverton/East Bay, 62 URI/Providence Station, 95x Westerly
  • URI Campus Routes: 69 URI Kingston Hillclimber, 70 URI Kingston Engineering, 211 Ram Line


Here's the Overpass QL script I'm using for getting these routes:

[timeout:25];(relation["route"="bus"]["operator"="RIPTA"];relation["route_master"="bus"]["operator"="RIPTA"]);out meta;>;out meta;

Previous entry

Mapping buildings with roofs at different levels from awkward angles

Posted by Horza on 9 February 2018 in English (English)

This building can only be seen in the Esri imagery and that is from an awkward angle. How do I mark out the outline of this building accurately?

Edit: Building at 53.46, -2.23. Corner of Burleigh Street and Denmark Road

2nd Edit. Guess I should have mentioned. The east half of the building is taller than the west half. That's where the problem is. Sorry.

Location: Curry Mile, Rusholme, Manchester, Greater Manchester, North West England, England, M14 5AN, United Kingdom

Recovering Royal Palm Boulevard Trees

Posted by Supaplex on 9 February 2018 in English (English)
Location: Jingmei, 景行里, Xizikou, Wenshan District, Taipei, 11670, ROC

OSMCha News - February/2018

Posted by wille on 9 February 2018 in English (English)

Hello! We just released a new version of OSMCha and we have some new features.

Changeset comments

Based off user feedback, we’ve made changeset comments from OSMCha more flexible.

discussions tab

You can choose to post comments before or after review the changeset, or not at all. You can also set comment templates, so you will have a base text that you can improve before posting. The Review Comment Templates can be edited in your OSMCha user page. We are working to improve this feature, adding the possibility to switch to the discussions tab right after the review is set.

user page

New Location filter

Now we have a new Location filter field. You can define your area of interest by searching for a place:

search place for location field

or drawing a polygon on the map:

draw polygon for location field

The Bounding Box (BBox) filter field is yet available. You can use the BBox size bound in combination with the Location or Bounding Box fields. For example, if you set the BBox size bound to 3, the search will return only changesets whose bbox area is not bigger than 3 times the area of the bbox or location geometry you set on your filter. That way you exclude very large edits that were not restricted to your area of interest.

Map style toogle

We fixed an old bug in the map style toggle. Now you can switch freely between the satellite, streets and dark imagery layers in the changeset visualization.

Roadmap and contact

We have published a roadmap for OSMCha. Do you have some new ideas for OSMCha? You can participate in the OSMCha development by subscribing to our mailing list or opening an issue or pull request in our repository.

Thank you, Amisha and Tridip for the support in this release!

Changeset viewer plugin for JOSM

Posted by Rub21 on 9 February 2018 in English (English)

A long time ago when I was starting the mapping in OpenStreetMap, I always wondered how I could see all the changes that have been made in a map in my area or another place where I worked, and have those changes in the JOSM background, and at the same time to make editions or verify according to the objects changed.

OSMCHA + Changeset-map are good tools to visualize the changeset, the plugin is consuming those API services to display the changesets. I am a fan of JOSM for faster editions with the high quality. Having these changesets in JOSM background helps to visualize the changes and edit the objects whether is necessary according to the made changes. image

How it works?

Set the map view in the place where you interest, pressed the button Get Changeset in the area, it will get the changeset, you can display more than one changeset.

If you want to display a particular changeset you can set the changeset id in the text field and pressed the button Display changeset

Check the Legend for each object!!



Any questions or suggestions just drop a ticket 👉

SMART bus stops

Posted by NixillUmbreon on 8 February 2018 in English (English)

I have just passed 1,000 bus stops (sitting at 1,001) mapped via a project I'm doing, so here's my first write-up.

What I'm doing

I'm taking a set of pre-planned bus rides to all of SMART's bus stops. Every last one of them. As I'm doing so, I'm using pen and printed maps to map out the locations of all of SMART's stops. Then when I get home, I'm doing all of the following:

  1. Creating public_transport=platforms for all of the bus stops
  2. Creating public_transport=stop_positions for all of the bus stops
  3. Adding those to the various route relations I created in the overhaul in December
  4. Also adding those to public_transport=stop_areas

What I've done so far

One thousand and one stops, including all stops on:

  • 125 Fort Street (North Terminal branch only)
  • 140 Southshore
  • 160 Downriver
  • 250 Ford Road
  • 275 Telegraph
  • 280 Middlebelt South
  • 330 Grand River / Beech Daly
  • 430 Main Street / Big Beaver

What's left to go

About 4,400 stops

Next update

Gonna update once every thousand stops

The origin of source=CZ:IPRPraha*

Posted by Matej Lieskovský on 7 February 2018 in English (English)


Prague Institute of Planning and Development is an organisation representing the city in spatial planning matters. They publish vast amounts of data through the website Geoportal under CC BY-SA 4.0, including regularly-updated high-resolution aerial imagery of the entire city.

Just over a year ago I noticed that there were some attempts to negotiate a permission to use their imagery for OSM, but the last news from that front was almost a year old. Being the sort of a person who tends to ask questions first and ask questions later, I decided to write them an email to find out what state were the negotiations in.

I listened to their reasons for keeping the data under CC BY-SA 4.0 and a few reassuring emails later I received an email containing the following:

"IPR Praha souhlasí s využíváním ortofotografií, které poskytuje prostřednictvím Geoportálu hl. m. Prahy, za účelem aktualizace a doplňování databáze OpenStreetMap, přičemž vzniklá vektorová data smí být vložena do OSM pod licencí ODbL za předpokladu, že IPR bude uveden v seznamu přispěvatelů do OSM a takto vzniklá data budou mít IPR uveden jako svůj zdroj."

A simplified translation for the non-Czech-speakers out there:

"[The Institute] agrees with the use of aerial imagery provided through [the website] for OSM. Resulting vector data may be published by OSM under ODbL provided that [the Institute] will be listed among the contributors to OSM and the data will list the appropriate source."

Needless to say I had the contributors wiki-page edited almost immediately. And so we got ourselves some very shiny imagery to use.

This January I had a look at the list of changesets and found that, in 2017 alone, at least 27 users used the imagery for a total of over 500 changesets and causing over 56 thousand map changes. When I wrote back to the Institute to share these stats with them, the resulting conversation ended with the granting of a general permission to use any of the CC BY-SA 4.0 data from the Geoportal website under the same conditions.

And that is the story of how OSM got its access to a lot of data for Prague.

I'd like to thank Prague Institute of Planning and Development for their generosity. We are grateful for this data and even I am curious as to what we can make with them.

Happy mapping!

Location: Florenc, Karlín, Prague, okres Hlavní město Praha, Hlavní město Praha, Prague, 1, Czechia

Show Chinas Map in Western Charakters?

Posted by FlorianG78 on 7 February 2018 in English (English)


I am located in china at present. I want to view the map from china. But it is only in chinese characters available. How to switch it into western characters?

Thank you!