The Open Mapping Hub Asia-Pacific’s OSM Help Desk had got into a small break just one week after it had started due to international travel. Between 5 and 14 March 2022, the Hub gathered in Nepal for its first in-person gather for co-working sessions and meet-ups with the local OSM community. We were able to meet with enthusiastic student groups from the geomatics engineering departments of Kathmandu University and Tribhuvan University Western Regional College and conduct workshops and training sessions on field mapping tools, disaster management with InaSAFE, and JOSM troubleshooting on March 11 and March 14.

Although we didn’t organize an online Help Desk session after returning, there were still non-synchronous communication on OSM-related questions or issues from the community. Yes, I’m asking you to go ahead and book an online session here, but you can also get in touch with me via can.unen[at] or shoot a direct message here.

Discussion Topics:

  • Is there any way to download OSM data from past, for a certain area?

Yes, you can access and download the history dumps of OpenStreetMap via Planet OSM, going back until 2013. Similarly, GeoFabrik also has historical data.

If you are looking for a specific date interval, you can use Overpass queries for relatively smaller regions. You can build queries on timestamps: newer filter would enable to look for objects which have been changed since the given date, changed filter would allow you to query data between two specific timestamps. Alternative to the “changed” filter, you can run two “newer” queries and compare the differences.

Alternatively, Osmium would also allow you to query data for certain time intervals.

  • On Tasking Manager, when I click to map the task, the task area is not automatically downloaded in JOSM.

Based on my experience related with similar errors I can suggest you check the following issues: Is JOSM up-to-date? Sometimes you might be using an outdated version of the software. If that’s the case, update to the latest version and see if it’s working properly. Alternatively, remote control settings might have changed at one point during updating. So I suggest going through the remote control settings and make sure it’s configured properly. It might be related to your settings on the Tasking Manager as well, please go to your profile settings and make sure the preferred editor is JOSM on your profile. And sometimes the project managers in Tasking Manager might specify a default editor for the project. That might also be the case. So this time, before clicking map the task, you should go on and select the editor as JOSM manually. And I should have asked this first, and it is analogous to asking “Is it plugged? Is the power on?”. But you need to also make sure that you open JOSM first. The remote control function will work if JOSM is opened and active in the background. I hope one of these suggestions would be a helpful remark to address your issue.

Looking forward to next week’s discussion topics already.

Happy mapping.

Location: 34840, Küçükyalı Merkez Mahallesi, Maltepe, Istanbul, Marmara Region, Turkey


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