SomeoneElse has commented on the following diary entries

Post When Comment
bus stops about 20 hours ago

@alan_gr Unfortunately, the wiki isn't always "authoritative". In I described a situation where I changed the wiki to reflect current practice, but it was changed back because current practice was "wrong". My options at this point were to get into a wiki edit war (I'd probably win that, since I am through historical accident a wiki admin, but it would (a) be a very silly waste of everyone's time and (b) something of an abuse of powers) or to get on with something more constructive, which is what I decided to do.

The best advice for new mappers is "stick with the editor presets", and follow the iD editor walkthrough, which is a great introduction to "how to map". In iD if you add a point and search for "bus stop", a highway=bus_stop is exactly what you will get.

bus stops 1 day ago

I believe that the "more simple tag" is "highway=bus_stop". In the UK it's 33 times more likely to be used that public_transport=stop_position.

More complicated tagging isn't "wrong" of course - but there's no need to make things more complicated than they need to be. The only roadside public transport infrastructure in most of the UK are bus stops, so it makes sense to just map those.

Creating a Map for a Garmin Edge 520 26 days ago

Thanks for writing this. There have been quite a few times over the years when people have asked how to get an OSM-based map onto a device with an unfeasibly small amount of storage, and there hasn't been a good answer to point people at before now.

Upcoming research on participation biases in OSM 29 days ago

Hi tigermilk and welcome to OSM!

Just in case you're not aware, the next East Midlands OSM meetup is in Nottingham on Tuesday Evening at the Lincolnshire Poacher up Mansfield Road. You're welcome to come along and say hello!

Best Regards,


OSM: Why can't contributors check/correct their own work! about 1 month ago

Maybe those comments weren't always polite :)

More seriously, a comment such as "you have broken a multipolygon here" will not communicate anything to someone who does not know what a multipolygon is.

Of course, there are genuine issues with e.g. MAPS.ME users not replying to comments. Part of that is because MAPS.ME users sometimes don't even know what OSM is, so to find it "talking to them" is very unexpected. Also matching the language of the comment to the language of the mapper is important (not everyone speaks English, and web translation these days is good enough that they'll at least get the sense of the problem, so there's no excuse not to).

OSM: Why can't contributors check/correct their own work! about 1 month ago

Actually, that editor that you don't know how to spell has the QA cues built into the UI, not as an afterthought at upload time - see for example , where the duplicate nodes appear as red pustules saying "fix me now!".

More seriously, the reasons why contributors don't correct their own work include:

  • They're new editors, still finding their way. Everyone needs to be allowed to get it wrong a few times as they learn how to edit OSM (whatever editor they are using).
  • No-one has actually told them that something is a problem. If people don't know about QA tools they won't know that they exist. The best way to get in contact with new mappers is to comment (politely!) in a changeset discussion. Anything that just sounds like "you're doing it wrong!" is unhelpful, even if they really are doing it wrong.
  • The QA tool is wrong. JOSM's validator is good, but still "cries wolf" quite a lot of the time, because not everywhere in the world is like Germany.
  • What's been uploaded is only the "first draft". For example, last night I uploaded this. It was important to upload it because it's a major change to the area, but it's far from complete, and there will be many things in there that need refining based on further survey. JOSM's validator there finds 1 error and 186 warnings, most of which are indications that further survey is needed (e.g. highway crossing building is obviously wrong, but which is in the right place?). Some of what JOSM's validator says there are just completely invalid, and it's up to the mapper to work out which and why.
Mapping Grenfell Tower about 1 month ago

It's not just "these estates" - some leafy suburbs also don't have as good a covering of local mappers as they might have either.

Take for example (Winchmore Hill). Basically schools yes, station and bus stops yes, pubs yes (but little detail), shops mostly no.

Balkan matters about 1 month ago

DWG here. Yes, drop us a mail (to ) and include any extra info you can as per the "I've seen a problem; what should I do?" section of .

With regard to bans, there's actually an OSMF policy on that - . I've been active in trying to calm down the "language wars" in Kosovo - trying to ensure that names used match names used locally and name:XX language names are available for use by anyone making maps. The "ban list" is at the top of , and most of those are vandals, spammers and fantasy mappers.

Usually with people making politically-motivated changes we change it back to a reasonable "on the ground, non-inflammatory" version and ensure that enough info is in there to allow everyone to make their map too. Occasionally this takes a bit of to and fro, and sometimes where the answer is less obvious we try and ask all interested parties to put their views forward and arbitrate on that (as we did with Western Sahara / Morocco / Spain last year).

A Map Legend 3 months ago

The "if you move away from it" issue is less of a problem with tabbed browsers everywhere these days; the bigger issue is that there is no one zoom level at which all of the map legend is sensibly visible! Another problem is agressive caching by e.g. mobile web browsers - it can be difficult to persuade an area to redisplay even if reendered on the server.

I'll probably end up with black boxes around groups of legend items with a label that appears at all zoom levels (saying "zoom in to see more" or similar). It might even be worth having special rendered map features just for the legend (rather than misusing place=locality for some of the names as now).

Even as it is though, it's hugely useful for QA - I spotted several errors such as "name not displayed" in the style only after I'd created the map legend. As it stands it's probably only about 20% complete (or maybe 40% complete of style-unique features).

Maps.Me loses OSM editing? 3 months ago

@Zverik Should that apply to notes too? has just been added and the MAPS.ME data that that user was seeing was from June last year.

Towards Creating General Melchett's Map 3 months ago

@philippec Yes, that;s the problem that this is designed to solve. I do now render maps of Great Britain and Ireland using the method above, but unfortunately not Belgium :(

OSM has failed me 3 months ago

"Having MAPS.ME show names as if the the phone language was language XX" sounds like a feature request to MAPS.ME to me (and one that I'd find useful, too!).

AAARGH !!! Those Spammers ! 3 months ago

The admins do tidy the diary entries periodically, but if you're reading the feed that won't help. You'd need to suggest to whoever runs the feed that they change the way it works - perhaps only posting after a period of time. I'm not sure who runs it, but if you ask in #osm-dev on IRC, someone may know.

The bike lanes: Broken! 3 months ago

The first thing I'd do is mention it (politely) to the other mapper - they won't know there's a problem otherwise. They've only been mapping for a few days, so be gentle :)

BOUNTY: identify changesets where street names were inserted 5 months ago

@jinalfoflia - OsmCha, while useful, doesn't actual do what is requested here, does it - "identify changesets where street names were inserted"?

If it does, perhaps you could explain how?

Potential contribution from ICT perspective 5 months ago

Re "we've done the quick fix for the app" can you confirm what changes you have made?

There are a number of issues. One is that the only changeset tag is typically "created_by" and is set to the mapper name, which is useless.

Another is that often the geometry of objects is implausible. Apparently is a >3 storey building with a shed on the roof, with a footprint that is less than a meter wide. This seems unlikely.

Still another is that all edits from the last day or so seem to have added the building type (typically "house") as either the name or the addr:housename or both.

Another is that some other tags seem to be unique within OSM. Where did you discuss the tagging scheme that you are using, and with whom? With imports there would be a step discussing the mapping of GIS attributes to OSM tags, and it seems only sensible to do the same here, especially where you are creating tags unique in OSM.

Potential contribution from ICT perspective 5 months ago

What'd be really helpful right now would be if you and the "great team who have got your back" could try and resolve some of the duplicates that are right now being added to the OSM database because of your buggy "geoMapTool" software.

It's easy to spot. All of the data has mistaggings. Much of it is duplicated - the same building uploaded in the same are over and over again.

It's not the fault of the users adding this data - they are presumably only doing what they were told to do, and are "trying to do the right thing" by adding valuable information in rural areas in Bangladesh. Unfortunately, the software that they have been given to use is letting them down.

Best Regards,


New edits not showing (yet again) 6 months ago

Yes - just to reiterate what has been said above - your edits are fine, and anyone using OSM data will see them. All the mobile apps that use OSM data will include them at the next upgrade cycle. The various third parties using data from e.g. Mapbox will see them; even the public transport infrastructure and the company printing maps that are displayed near supermarkets and railway stations local to me will see them too. They'll appear on the "standard" map at too, just a little slower for now.

New edits not showing (yet again) 6 months ago

It's a known problem - there's just been a discusson on IRC about it.

Dressed-up Notification Mails 6 months ago

I have one question - how do I turn it off?

The mails themselves do include a "text/plain" part, which is good, and it is often possible in view that by default in individual email clients, but not always (and it's cumbersome to have to do it many times).

Clearly some people actually like to read HTML formatted text (though I can't for the life of me think why). However the fact that this is still being adjusted to make it usable on mobile ( overlooks the fact that there's an excellent solution to "make a message readable everywhere" already - just make it available in plain text.

Was a profile option for "send always-legible notification emails" considered? How hard would it be to add?