Skippern's diary

Recent diary entries

OpenSeaMap, INT-1 and a new base layer map

Posted by Skippern on 23 November 2012 in English (English)

I am glad to announce that I have been accepted as a team member in OpenSeaMap's attempt in making a more nautical friendly base map. We are still just starting the process, but at least it is a start.

The team at the moment is myself, Dominik, who does the testing with mod_tile, and Yohan, who for some time have been developing a houseboating site.

The three of us have the common goal of making a base map where typical land features are toned down, or maybe even completely neglected, in favour of enhancing the viewability of features that have an importance on nautical navigation.

I will use my place on the team to get the base layer as much influenced on INT-1 symbols as possible, though we might do some priorities on the side of INT-1.

Since we are just about to start off, it is still too early to say anything about actual results yet. Also, it has to be noted that there are a faction within OpenSeaMap that want a combined nautical and land map. My message to them is to continue to use the Mapnik base map, but as mentioned, we are too early in the process to know what will be the outcome of this yet.

Location: Centro, Guarapari, Microrregião Guarapari, Greater Vitória, Mesorregião Central Espírito-Santense, Espírito Santo, Southeast Region, Brazil

INT 1 Tagging Preset and Documentation

Posted by Skippern on 26 October 2012 in English (English)

As a result of my reversed engineering of OpenSeaMap data model, I have gotten a lot further on both my tagging preset and my INT 1 documentation. I might need to do a cleanup in the tagging preset shortly, but at the moment, I'll focus on adding all the correct keys and values to the preset.

Next step on the preset will be to clean up the preset, getting the keys in logical order, with the values of combo and multiselect sorted in a logical manner (most used on top, the rest in alphabetical order?)

Some might have noticed that I create documentation pages for various keys and values as I continue on the documentation. That is because there are already usages of most of these, some times several thousands, and they are part of complicated schematics. I will try to make this as documented as possible. I hope that the team behind OpenSeaMap can go in and document some as well, that can help me go in the right direction both on the tagging preset and on the wiki documentation.

Location: Mesorregião Central Espírito-Santense, Espírito Santo, Southeast Region, Brazil

Reversed Engineering of Data Model

Posted by Skippern on 22 October 2012 in English (English)

It sounds strange, and should not have been necessary, but since the people behind OpenSeaMap havn't been much of a help of documenting their data model (a few scattered wiki pages with not much readable structure is not documenting). The result have been that I have looked through the tools they have provided (Harbor tagging preset for JOSM and OpenSeaMap Editor plugin also for JOSM), which have given me something more useful to work with, and than started to search for common values with taginfo. The result have been that I have managed to structure their data much better. Things I tag with my reverse engineered data model actually start showing up on OpenSeaMap, something that proves that I am getting closer to the data model.

There are still a lot of things that I cannot get around, though it might be missing from their data model altogether as well. Taginfo doesn't return to me commonly used combination to these tags, as they still havn't enough occurances in the database. That means it is hard to know how to distinguish different types of restricted areas from each other, for example.

Another thing I am wondering about is how to get notes on objects that can show up in separate information boxes depending on map presentation. At the moment I am using note=

My JOSM preset and MapCSS for INT-1 will be updated when I get a chance, probably in a months time (they have been heavily edited compared with the ones on my web page).

Location: P-50

How to Contribute to OpenStreetMap in 5 minutes

Posted by Skippern on 14 September 2012 in English (English)

Catchy title?

User wille have made a poster [1] which gives an introduction into how to contribute to OpenStreetMap in a few easy steps. The one finished (actually he is still polishing on it on inputs from the Brazilian mailing list) product is in Portuguese, but he have an .svg source where the text easilly can be translated to other languages. I think this is a good idea, and such posters can be set up on collages where "tech-savy" people might study.

The project of cleaning up IBGE imported highways are proceeding with great speed. Many from the Brazilian community as well as other people intersted in helping are daily doing improvements, not only to the roads in question, but also to the surrounding areas. See my previous post if you are interested in that project.

Today I also added some port details near Rio Grande, where I might need to visit a ship yard in the near future. The details I focused on was to put enough information on the map that I might be able to route to it with OsmAnd. I hope it is included in the map befire I actually need to go there, OsmAnd doesn't update their maps too often.

Looking around the map today I noticed brownish yellow spots around several places in Espírito Santo. Did I really add that many farmland patches? I think I might have had some help. Are people starting to map landuse? I see that at least one of the foreigners helping tagging are adding landuse=residential so we are starting to add color to the map. I wonder if IBGE might have some sources that can speed this process? Europe have come a long way with Corine landuse data, and the US with some (TIGER?) data, why not look into doing some imports in Brazil as well?

I am starting to realize the ironic in the offshore industry. A ship equiped with an expensive remotely operated vehicle (ROV) install a two dollar toilet brush in one of its arms to clean a petrolium well hub at almost 2000 meter water depth.


Location: Industrial Tamandaré, Sede, Rio Grande, Microrregião do Litoral Lagunar, Aglomeração Urbana do Sul, Mesorregião Sudeste Rio-Grandense, Rio Grande do Sul, South Region, 96204-040, Brazil

IBGE (Re)Mapaton

Posted by Skippern on 8 September 2012 in English (English)

Some years ago, I think it was in early 2009, user Claudomiro imported IBGE highway data under PD license. At that time the Brazilian map was mostly blank, and except for a few, relatively small geographical areas, no high resolution imagry available. The import was welcome by the Brazilian community as it helped connect the dots (the areas with highres and/or active mappers) into one grid.

Now, in 2012, a large portion of Brazil is covered by high res images from Bing, more detailed imports have been done, the community have grown, data quallity in general is getting better.

With this improved data it has been noted that the IBGE imported data is of very low resolution, and some places deviates from the actual path by quite a large distance, users have at random basis corrected these paths until resently, when another user, Vitor Sessak (vitor1234) took the initiative to create an extract with the unaltered nodes of Claudomiro's import [1], and by an idea spurred by me we have started a (Re)Mapaton in order to get these last roads aligned as best we can.

Of corse I started out in Northern Espírito Santo where Bing coverage is quite good (some holes still missing though), and some alignment already done by GPS and other sources. Litoral South Espírito Santo is already fully aligned. The Caparaó region of Espírito Santo will be tricky to align as highres imagry is almost completely missing, and few gps tracks available.

For other states I havn't turned my attention yet, but seeing on the archive [1] I see that Minas Gerais, São Paulo, and Goias among other have a lot of non-aligned data.

If there is anybody else out there wanting to take part in our IBGE (Re)Mapaton, download the mentioned file, open it as a background layer in your favourite editor (I use JOSM for this), browse to an area with non-edited points and compare it with Bing, readjust the road if nobody else already have done it and upload your changes.

Vitor have said on the mailing list that he will update the archive, though it is not confirmed how regularly he will do so. The suggestion was weekly updates.

As the road network of Espírito Santo is improving I am thinking about making a complete list of ES-roads on the wiki, and create relations for at least all long and important ones. A complete list of BR-roads in Espírito Santo, and as well all of Brazil already are on the wiki, and most relations already have been created.

If you find my location strange, I am on Roncador oil field in northern part of Campos Basin off the coast of Rio de Janeiro, in the visinity of FPSO Frade (Chevrron/Frade oil field), FPSO Brasil (SBM for Petrobras), FPSO Petrobras 52 and FPSO Petrobras 54


Location: P-52

Status update

Posted by Skippern on 8 August 2012 in English (English)

Its getting towards the end of my "offline" period, where I focus my attention on familly, and less on OpenStreetMap. I have during these few weeks witnessed the redaction bot (not many changes in my area), as well as been able to add a few objects through Mapzen POI collector (from my cell phone) and OpenPOI (from my iPad). The objects added is in Macae, Rio de Janeiro and Guarapari.

I also got a chance to try out routing with OsmAnd, and start to get results. Pedestrian routing worked fine in Rio de Janeiro, except that it didn't route me diagonally through squares, but along their edges. Don't know if this is a tagging or routing issue.

I will also familiarize myself with the access to some ship yards and other maritime structures, I was at Camorim yard and base on Sunday and Monday, and will in a few hours go to UTC yard, which will be introduced to the map during the following weeks.

Note: every time I sleep at a new hotel, or ieat at a new restaurant I try to add it to the map, though some might slip. Sometimes I add hotels and restaurants close to where I am, such as when I ate at Makoto restaurant, close to Praç XV, Rio de Janeiro, I also added two other restaurants next to it.

Location: Saara, Centro, Zona Central do Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Região Metropolitana do Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Southeast Region, 20061-021, Brazil

Comes to an end...

Posted by Skippern on 5 July 2012 in English (English)

My work period comes to an end, that means no more edit frenzies for some weeks as I have to spend time with my family.

For people reading here, and as a reminder for me for August/September:

  1. License Change Status around Vitória, ES, Brazil - Need to look into replacing a few nodes and roads. Roughly 20 objects need to be created.

  2. License Change Status around Cachoeira de Itapemirim, ES, Brazil One object affected, only the addition of one node in a road, I think we can survive if that node is deleted.

  3. Loads of Bing! coverage. Only the western most part of the south of Espírito Santo that really is in lack of coverage, though there are some holes and gaps around. Quite some cloud cover a few places, but anyway, some is better than none.

  4. Continue aligning my collection of Brazilian Hydrographic Maps, and maybe prepare for starting to trace this data.

  5. For the last few days my work have been focused on new Bing coverage, even though I have the source file for the Brazilian 2010 Census address data still laying around. More fun in tracing new roads than looking through the census data for street names. Though I can always fall back to that from time to time. Would probably be easier if I could arrange a paint style displaying street name and house number in each point.

  6. My INT-1 project are slowly progressing.

Location: Rua Maria Estela Barnase, Barra Seca, Jaguaré, Microrregião São Mateus, Mesorregião Litoral Norte Espírito-Santense, Espírito Santo, Southeast Region, Brazil

Gap in Minas Gerais

Posted by Skippern on 16 June 2012 in English (English)

Since I knew I would have problems accessing internet for a few days I downloaded all boundaries in Minas Gerais and did a little tidying on the border relations (created micro and meso region borders mainly), I discovered that there is a gap in the border between Ouro Preto and Mariana. Downloading the area with the gap, and there is certainly a gap, nothing connects or almost connects the two sides of the gaping boundary.

Somebody with access to the source data that can help fill in the gap?

Location: Morro São João, Ouro Preto, Microrregião Ouro Preto, Mesorregião Metropolitana de Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Southeast Region, 35400-000, Brazil

Editing before going to work

Posted by Skippern on 11 June 2012 in English (English)

The bad thing about editing on the map before going to work is that I forget the time. I have to exit JOSM and unplug my hard drive as I use a public computer. If I have edited a too large area or starts the upload too late I risk that I have to either come too late to work or leave my hard drive connected to the public computer. Thankfully we are limited to only 20 people accessing those public computers, but still, I have some private stuff on that drive....

After the stunt with border relations in Rio de Janeiro state, I am now back on IBGE Census data for Espirito Santo, hoping to complete those parts of Presidente Kennedy that is not covered by clouds. I think I have one or two more days to do that. The question will than be if I continue with Itapemirim or Mimisa do Sul, but I'll probably decide on that first edit session after completing Presidente Kennedy. Municipalities of Marataizes and Vitoria had no valuable census data to import, and there are some municipalities not covered by Bing, I need to correlate the census data to Bing, or other background data to get it on the map, a slow process.

I filtered some garbage from the census data set today, removed all addresses consisting of only "RUA PRINCIPAL", "AVENIDA PRINCIPAL" or "ESTRADA PRINCIPAL" (main road). Keeping only data that have a streetname that make sense reduces the time editing alot.

Location: Centro, Presidente Kennedy, Microrregião Itapemirim, Mesorregião Sul Espírito-Santense, Espírito Santo, Southeast Region, 29350-000, Brazil

Rio de Janeiro

Posted by Skippern on 9 June 2012 in English (English)

I suddenly got the idea to make border relations for all municipalities in Rio de Janeiro state. During this work I discovered some problems in the imported border ways, and cleaned up where I could understand the problems. Still, Sao Goncalo and Duque de Caixas municipality borders are broken relations (not forming complete circles) as there was lacking and conflicting data. Also it seems according to wikipedia that the municipality of Novo Iguacu have been divided into two municipalities, though I have no idea where the border goes.

There are some people importing IPP data for Rio de Janeiro, maybe they can look into this.

Also the border between Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo states need to be looked at as they are two sets of borders almost maching.

Location: Galo Branco, São Gonçalo, Rio de Janeiro, Região Metropolitana do Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Southeast Region, 24421-300, Brazil

Data imports

Posted by Skippern on 8 May 2012 in English (English)

Finally thhe Brazilian comunity have been able to extract address data from IBGE 2010 census data, covering millions of points all over Brazil. Following a discussion on the Brazilian mailing list, this data have been devided by states and voluntairs from different states have received their part of the data.

This data have a few limitations:

  • the data is mainly covering rural addresses

  • there are lots of duplication in the data

  • data sometimes refer to entrance of building, entrance to estate, and even center of building

With these limits the import of the data must be done with caution. The preferred way after the discussion is to use the IBGE data in a separate background layer, and compare it with already existing data and Bing overlay.

Further I have been in contact with VLIZ regarding importing their EEZ/Maritime boundary data. They like the initiative, but are uncertain of what impact it will have on their userbase. My plan as I states in my contact with them is to do a one time import of their data, or even part of their data if they are not willing to release it all. They have also responded that they have some other data packages under development and might be willing to share some or all of it with OSM. I will continue to playnthis ball to see if we can get some benefiting data out of it.

For the rest of May I do not know how much time I have for OSM. Generally when I am at home my time is limited to diary entries and mailing lists, and to some extent some gps surveying, though there is little I can survey anymore as most streets have been traced. If I had time to do some walking paper I could get some street names in place (where IBGE data doesn't cover it, i.e. urban parts of Guarapari.

Location: Centro, Guarapari, Microrregião Guarapari, Greater Vitória, Mesorregião Central Espírito-Santense, Espírito Santo, Southeast Region, Brazil

Bing tracing, INT-1 .svg, JOSM preset and mapcss

Posted by Skippern on 18 April 2012 in English (English)

The good thing about not having a specific project is that I can jump around on the map without feeling that I am delaying a specific import or project. This way I have now been able to add some residential roads in Marechal Floriano and Vila de Itapemirim, some random land cover in southern Espírito Santo, and gathered a bunch of SVG files I can use as base creating a complete collection of SVG icons for my INT-1 documentation.

The same SVGs are used in my INT-1 preset and mapcss for JOSM. I have by now all icons in chapter U according to British Admirality, US Hydrographic Institute, Brazilian Hydrographic Survey, French Maritime Administration, Canadian Coast Guard and Singapore Flag Administration. Mostly there are an agreement on usage of the INT-1 symbols from IHO, though there are some national variations. All national variations will be documented on the wiki, while I will chose the icons looking best for the preset and mapcss presentations.

In the future I will try to make a Mapnik style rendering based on INT-1 recomendations. I will follow the same base rule there as in my JOSM mapcss, chosing the icons looking the best.

At the moment I develop the preset and mapcss as well as edit new icons while at work (in my spare time) and upload changes while at home (due to somebody deciding to block ssh connections in the company firewalls). This makes for a long and slow debugging process, but hopefully the preset might be ready for an official listing in JOSM in not too long.

After completing the INT-1 preset I will start looking into making a Brazilian preset, where I collect tags and values agreed on by the Brazilian community, in order to assist in more consista t tagging in Brazil. This should IMO be done for several countries, not necessary to replace the default JOSM preset, but as an additional support to it.

All my .svg files are public domain, though some are derived from copyrighted material, all elements copied from other files are from PD licensed files, rest are drawed from scratch using only the copyrighted files as guide. No direct tracing of copyrighted files done.

Location: Centro, Guarapari, Microrregião Guarapari, Greater Vitória, Mesorregião Central Espírito-Santense, Espírito Santo, Southeast Region, Brazil


Posted by Skippern on 4 April 2012 in English (English)

Ok, so OSM is now under the new license, ODbL. Hopefully this doesn't mean much different for the contributors, and hopefully tha transaction to the new license havn't messed up too much.

In the last coupple of days I have gathered a few gpx tracks, and finally today got them uploaded to the server. I will within a couple of days look into getting some editing done, adding a few new features.

Among what have been explored is a german restaurant (Grossmutter), a tourist attraction (Fjordland) a zoo (didn't get the name) and a few roads. I also have the height warning of the viaduct in Linhares (the sign on the site says 5.20, but that is actually only valid for the lowest corner, I got to see more accurate measurements as it was in the process of approving a special road transport)

The tags I will use for the viaduct is maxheight=5.20 and maxheight:physical=5.20

With some of the roads I got around Pedra Azul I will be able to get a lot more out of Bing in the area, a large portion of one of the roads is so covered with trees that it is impossible to track from Bing. I hope the entire Rota de Largarta (thats the name of the road) can be traced now, previously only a few hundred meters have been traced.

Location: Praia Campista, Macaé, Microrregião Macaé, Mesorregião Norte Fluminense, Rio de Janeiro, Southeast Region, 27940-290, Brazil

Ideas for the future

Posted by Skippern on 29 March 2012 in English (English)

As the license change is approaching and I have had litttle time to do any editing for a while (though collected a tiny bit of data for future edits), I have done a little thinking.

I have now contributed to OpenStreetMap for more than 4 years, I am active in translating wiki pages to Portuguese (though not keeping them up to date unfortienately), I have now harvested a little data for and got some 3G coverage to Brazil.

An idea for cloudmade/other routing program: Use openBmap data to give warnings about lack in mobile coverage on routes. (I know data still is somewhat limited, but that is constantly improving)

Location: Centro, Guarapari, Microrregião Guarapari, Greater Vitória, Mesorregião Central Espírito-Santense, Espírito Santo, Southeast Region, Brazil

Sobre thoughts on the effects of Bing! and FourSquare on the Brazilian OSM community

Posted by Skippern on 8 March 2012 in English (English)

There have been some weeks now since Bing coverage of Brazil (and probably much more) have been extended, and many places in Brazil (and maybe elsewhere in the world) have turned into a editing frenzy. The map is improving quickly, some places so quickly that we start getting into conflicts because several users edits the same objects roughly at the same time. This is both a positive and negative thing. Positive because the map quickly improves, negative because it increases the possibility of having the same object duplicated sevaral times.

Another reasent development have been the switch of base map in FourSquare from google to OSM. At first several Brazilian cities turned into white spots in FourSquare, but some bright minds have taken unto them to correct this. At least one new active mapper have turned up because of this, helping putting more of Brazil on the map.

The effect this have had on the data is that the size of the XML files of Brazil have increased extremely. I am not able to do a check for all of Brazil (I neither have the bandwidth nor the discspace to do a comparison, nor have historical archives to show me the old sizes) but the state of Espírito Santo have close to doubled since chirstmas. If this is representative for the rest of Brazil than this might become challenging.

When that is said I have discovered another open project called openBmap (check out site) that collects harvested data regarding mobile phone (and wi-fi) coverage based on combining signal strengths with GPS possitions. I have installed their harvesting app on my mobile, and have collected a few points of ViVo coverage near Vitoria. I think I should have this logging running when driving around in the area, for the harvested ViVo data so far only shows 2G coverage, while there are quite lot of 3G coverage in the area. According to what I have read on the project it should be able to log 4G coverage, but to my knowledge this isn't available in Brazil yet.

Location: Centro, Região Administrativa I - Centro, Vitória, Microrregião Vitória, Greater Vitória, Mesorregião Central Espírito-Santense, Espírito Santo, Southeast Region, Brazil

More Bing! coverage

Posted by Skippern on 5 March 2012 in English (English)

I was positively surprised a little time ago when I opened my JOSM, and discovered that Bing! coverage had been greatly extended. I looked around Espírito Santo and saw that much of what I had been missing have been included, though there are still many areas of interest to me that are not yet included.

A mapping frenzie ensued from this discovery, and much have already been added to the map. I have come to a point where I soon cannot add much very useful information in my short edits anymore, but think I will look into polishing adjoining information as well as information within Espírito Santo (such as improving boundary relations around Brazil, such as municipalities in Rio de Janeiro state, and State and Federal highways in Espírito Santo.

It is desirable to see even further extension of Bing coverage, and guess that might be acomplished again next year (don't hand out too much candy at one time I guess). The map is slowly but surely improving, and already many places OSM shows much better map data then some comersial maps, and google.

Now, with the last improvement in coverage and resulting edit frenzie, the Brazil map is getting so big in OSMAND and other navigator software that maybe it is due time to cut it into state size portions. I browsed Geofabrik and CloudMade and noticed CloudMade already offer Brazilian states for Garmin and TomTom as well as state poli, shapefiles and osm extracts. OSMAND seems to base its chunks on Geofabrik who still only offer entire Brazil. Geofabrik seems to have daily updates while the last update of CloudMade seems to be 13th of December 2011, almost 3 months ago.

Location: Centro, Guarapari, Microrregião Guarapari, Greater Vitória, Mesorregião Central Espírito-Santense, Espírito Santo, Southeast Region, Brazil

Progress Note: Importing IBGE boundaries for Espírito Santo

Posted by Skippern on 22 January 2012 in English (English)

Finally last municipality in Espírito Santo have been imported, though the dataset might need some cleaning around.

It will be some work doing the cleaning, and with the limited time and internet connection I don't see that I can do that now. I hope to look into adding place= tags on those admin levels corresponding to a place=, but that will also have to wait for an opertunity of cleaning. Another option is that somebody else can do a cleaning though.....

[0] Last changeset
[1] Espírito Santo Collection Relation

Location: Vila Marinho, Água Doce do Norte, Microrregião Barra de São Francisco, Mesorregião Noroeste Espírito-Santense, Espírito Santo, Southeast Region, 29820-000, Brazil

Progress Note: Importing IBGE boundaries for Espírito Santo

Posted by Skippern on 12 January 2012 in English (English)

Good news: Internet is back, after the ship where I work have been without communication for a few days.

Bad news: Our internet line is so weak that I almost can connect to OSM. By almost I mean ALMOST, as in link timeouts and connection failures almost all the time.

This means there will be almost no more importation done this month. I have 18 municipalities left to close this import, but that might have to wait until March.

Another note of interest is that coming crew change will be in Belém or Fortaleza, and that my family are looking into coming to visit for the crew change. We don't get too much chance of being tourists in Brazil, and the northern regions is a little too far to do spontaneous trips.

The ship is working only 80 nautical miles from Cabo Orange, on the border towards French Guiana, I was almost hoping that we could visit Cayenne, but that would be too much to ask for as we are on contract with Petrobras.

Location: Amapá, North Region, Brazil

After the holidays

Posted by Skippern on 30 December 2011 in English (English)

I have returned home after a holiday in Portugal, and I managed to harvest some 12000 gpx points, though it seemed like most of it already was on the map. For certain I know yhere are 3 petrol stations and a restaurant to add, and maybe a hundred meter road. I might also be able to point out a post office and a grocery store (they called it a mini-market, a supermarket with two shelves....)

It looks like Portugal have done some imports in additional to maybe Bing data.

I will look at the data when I get time, for now, the GPX tracks are uploaded publicly...

Location: Pereiras, Santa Clara-a-Velha, Odemira, Beja, Alentejo Litoral, Alentejo, 7655-812, Portugal

Progress Note: Importing IBGE boundaries for Espírito Santo

Posted by Skippern on 19 December 2011 in English (English)

Counting down for the holidays meaning I soon will have to suspend the import of IBGE boundaries of Espírito Santo. There are about 20 municipalities where internal divisions have not been imported yet. With regards to the work load left, and time needed to actually do the import, than I need about 10 slow workdays to complete the import.

I will now (soon at least) go away for holidays, meaning that there will be a good 10 days where I am not able to do much work on the map. Hopefully I get the rest of the import completed soon after I get back to working on it.

If it hadn't been for the various setbacks I have had during the import, I would have been finished by now, but unfortunately setback is a part of reality, even for OSM contributors.

Going away for the holidays means I might gather some GPX tracks and some POIs with my mobile. I have already downloaded the maps of Portugal, and are trying to download the maps of Spain to my mobile, so that we are covered for driving. (Spain is only optional if time allows for us).

Colatina was the last of the complex municipalities in the import, I was fearing São Mateus to be complex, but turned out to only have district boundaries, no suburbs. All remaining municipalities are expected to only have district boundaries.

[x] Espírito Santo collection relation

Location: Ayrton Senna, Colatina, Microrregião Colatina, Mesorregião Noroeste Espírito-Santense, Espírito Santo, Southeast Region, 29705-555, Brazil