Mapper since:
September 14, 2012

What I do


I usually contribute in areas I am somewhat familiar with. By ‘somewhat familiar’ I mean having been there at least once but my main area of interest are the eastern austrian alps. Hence the following description of activities:

landuse from OGD

I primarily incorporate meadow, farmland, wineyard and scrub polygons from this austrian open goverment dataset into OSM where this kind of landuses/landcovers are either not mapped yet or are not mapped sufficient enough in comparison. For the latter I prefer to use the ‘replace geometry’ function of JOSM’s utilsplugin2 as much as I can to keep the history intact but naturally that’s not always feasable.

enhancing forest MPs

As a result of these landuse additions I also adopt the adjacent landuse polygons which are forest multipolygons most of the time. When doing that I also beautify these MPs by:

  • splitting MP ‘monsters’ into more handy, compact entities - not exceeding ~100 members as rule of thumb
  • splitting MPs in a way that they also reflect their topographic situation consulting this DEM
  • adopting the outer boundaries to natural, inert boundaries such as waterways, creeks, saddles and ridges in order to reduce randomly placed dead-straight boundaries which I assume mainly exist out of the efford to tame huge-grown forest MPs in the first place. (or even worse: they originate from ancient imports)
  • adding a description tag usually containing the name of the highest peak (e.g. description = Waldgebiet Almkogel)

Addendum: IMO the key ‘landuse’ is to be taken literally: No matter if recently planted, clear cut or successive vegetation after a windthrow: landuse is still forerst - in contrast to landcover which is refelected in the key natural=*.

on the relevance of micromapping and landuse

Contrary to the wide spread opinions that adding topgraphics on a small scale does not really enhance OSM and adding landuse is nothing more than a paintjob I’ve encountered numerous situations especially while off-trail hiking in which exactly those kind of mappings helped me out and therefore convinced me (and others) to contribute to OSM. Especially landuse, minor streams, minor powerlines etc. are standard features in official map products with the purpose to support orientation in terrain. With OSM beeing super portable and enabling a level of detail that has never been before, having these kind of things mapped is one of many aspects that makes OSM really stand out.

descriptive name tags

Whenever I encounter that kind of tags for example: building=yes name=Silo or sport=soccer name=Fußballplatz I either delete the name or repace it with a proper name if avaliable. You don’t name a child “child” but rather “Kevin” or “Jacqueline”, do you? :)

How I became

  • Born and raised in the alps; almost weekly hikes; always accompanied by BEV and AV maps.
  • Studied geography; then gis and cartography
  • Totally into OSM since FOSSGIS 2016
  • Working as cartographer