Getting Started

Posted by edgehillnet on 21 November 2010 in English (English)

Well I discovered this a couple days ago and am having fun. I've done maps of the neighborhood over the last 21 years, for example this one with acrylic paint on canvas:

I have worked with custom google maps, and that's handy but not very good looking and all you can do is put those little balloon tacks on, no way to label anything. You can draw but no accessible attributes... OSM is better looking but very limited in what you can get to render, and there seems to be no way to add custom annotations, only standard geographic features.

I'm interested in mapping the parks, stairways, paths and natural areas. It would be great to map more of the land use also like the retail districts are highlighted, similar to the one I linked above. SFprospector has that zoning info, which I've done a map kind of like that before in AutoCAD years ago. Theoretically the city data might be made available for direct import. I would correct it to reflect actual conditions though, so the result would be something that gives you a picture of the texture of the landscape, whether an area is single family homes or big apartment blocks, industrial, etc. Same for open spaces; forest, brush, grassland, irrigated park, etc.

Comment from lyx on 21 November 2010 at 00:56

Hi, welcome to the crowd! One thing that might take a bit of getting used to: The collection of data and the map rendering are pretty independent things here, so not everything that is in the map data is shown on every version of the map. The good thing about this is that there are tools to create all kinds of renderings out of the map data as well as quite different stuff like traffic routing, load simulation on the power network (I made that one up, AFAIK no-one built this yet, but it would be possible IMHO), finding the next vietnamese restaurant and many more.

Comment from edgehillnet on 21 November 2010 at 02:55

Thanks, the only other view I found was the OpenCycleMap, which is cool, though I couldn't figure out much there... seems the committee or whatever has only agreed on showing major routes but I know there are a lot more bike lanes in my area, appearing weekly in fact, where I ride.

I understand it would theoretically be possible to make your own rendering page and I imagine there are university projects, etc but none of that exists as far as I can tell. I did actually take a week-long course at ESRI years ago so have some clue of the potential but I'm not much of a coder these days. It would be fantastic if I could set up my own projects for example natural areas in the city but it seems you've got to work within the rendering possibilities if you want to actually be able to see anything.

Ha, I know so little, like how to search the map... all I know is scrolling around and put it into edit mode to inspect the tags.

Comment from FraMauro on 21 November 2010 at 09:10

Other two views:

A quick way to make your rendering: try the style editor here


Comment from Sanderd17 on 21 November 2010 at 10:24

If you use linux (it doesn't work on windows or mac yet), you can make your owne rendering with mkgmap. It's settings are rather simple and thus the rendering is not that great. I've used it to highlight the boundaries af a village together with the major roads in a lesson.

If you want to go more advanced, you can set up an osmarenderer service, but this will require a lot of hours making config files to get the rendering correct.

about searching the map, someone is making a better search engine which might get implemented into the OSM front page in the future. Take a look here:

Comment from cambodia on 21 November 2010 at 11:04

To analyse the data behind the maps there are handy tools from a company called ITO - Try ...

Comment from edgehillnet on 21 November 2010 at 16:44

Thanks folks, I'm starting to get a clue. Wow, this one looks great:

Comment from Hawkeye on 21 November 2010 at 19:24

I like your map painting btw! I used a program called Kosmos for rendering one off maps, should also be able to add your own custom icons too. There is a newer version called Maperitive but I haven't tried that yet.

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