Reviewing, revising, polishing and providing helpful feedback are all parts of what someone validating a HOT task square has to do and that takes some experience.
But most of what validation ends up being about is typical HOT mapping: roads and buildings. This is mainly because most people who do validations do not want to mark task squares “Invalid”, I would much rather finish one up and then leave some good feedback for the good work that was done.
That is always, for me, the biggest use of my time and what slows down my validation process, mapping in missing features. So new mappers are really helpful to the validation process, directly and indirectly.
Directly, I encourage new mappers to get started in any HOT OSM Tasking Manager project by reading the instructions and then looking at 3 or 4 of the “Gold” colored task squares. They are “Completed” but not reviewed or “Validated” yet.
After you read the instructions, just review a “Completed” task square to see if anything is missing and if it is map it in. That is amazingly helpful to this whole process, just standard mapping in “Completed” task squares.
Do not try to make it over detailed, that is not the goal of most of our mapping. Our goal is roads that connect places and some of the most used roads, tracks or paths around those places.
And buildings, if the instructions call for buildings, we do want to get every one of those we possibly can. So fill in any buildings you see if the instructions call for buildings.
By reviewing a “Completed” task square will help you see how others are mapping an area and help you see where people miss things so your mapping will get better too.
If you do review a “Completed” task square and add buildings or roads, make sure you click “Unlock” to stop mapping, these squares still need to be reviewed by an experienced mapper or validator, so you should not use that button. Your additions have just made the validation much easier for those doing the validations. Try not to alter anything you are not sure about, just add in missing roads or buildings or whatever depending on the instructions.
To all new HOT / OSM mappers: Thank you for all your help, you are making a big difference.
Comment from joost schouppe on 14 November 2015 at 16:31
That makes a lot of sense. I too learned how to map things mostly by looking at how other people mapped similar things, long before I knew my way to places like wiki and mailing lists.
Thanks for sharing.
Comment from Raretrack on 31 January 2016 at 17:52
Just re-read this after a couple of months. Was really good advice when I started out validating HOT tasks!
Comment from Athalis on 29 May 2016 at 16:03
Additional to adding missing data (roads, buildings, ..) I think beginners should also use the “invalidate” button if they see many features missing in a “completed” task. In the recent Ecuador jobs there were lot of tiles marked as done, but only a few buildings had been mapped. Immediately after I invalidated these they had been picked up from other mappers and sometimes I couldn’t even lock the task again for splitting it.