Monthly Archives: September 2009

OSM now in 26 more languages

  • El WikiMapaMundi libre
  • La wiki-mappa Libera del Mondo
  • Die freie Wiki-Weltkarte

OpenStreetMap now recognises a total of 51 languages for the main website and is available over at TranslateWiki if you want to help with the effort of refining those or adding more!

Check out the clear progress for each language and also chart of strings added per day.

As avar says, “with a week more of Translatewiki we should have as much translation activity as we’ve gotten in all the time since the site was made translatable in May”.

Flickr adds OpenStreetMap machine tag goodness

When you tag photos in flickr with OSM metadata like ‘osm:way=30089216’ the squirrels will busily work to figure out what you’re talking about and link over to OSM. See this example and scroll down to look at the machine tags and stuff on the right. It figured out the building from the road it’s on and the name of the photo. Magic.

Also, check out the flick blog post on the subject.

DeCarta support OSM

Woo! Check it out.

San Jose, California – September 16, 2009 – deCarta, the leading supplier of software and services for the Location-Based Services (LBS) industry, today announced the launch of its beta program supporting OpenStreetMap (OSM) data.

The beta program makes the OSM content available for selected cities around the world. A product release that will support the complete coverage of OSM is scheduled for October 2009.

EPIC FAIL from Joburg

Interesting article here:

The City of Johannesburg is closing off its GIS data in a ‘cost recovery’ move that other South African municipalities are set to follow. This, say some industry players, is not in keeping with Joburg’s plans to become ‘a world-class African city’.

Go to the City of Johannesburg’s ‘e-services’ online mapping site on a Mac or on a Firefox browser and you’ll be disappointed. In bold red letters, a notice reads: ‘PLEASE NOTE: The online map viewer is only compatible with Internet Explorer 6 or higher…’

The problems don’t end here. Further along in the process, you’ll see a ‘disclaimer’ that reads: ‘The contents may not be copied, reproduced, redistributed to third parties in any form for any purpose whatsoever, or applied to commercial use without the written consent of the Council.’

Google’s Data Liberation Front and aerial imagery

Data Liberation Front

Google have a couple of really enlightened guys called the “Data Liberation Front“. Their role is to make it easy for people to get their data out of Google – rather than it being locked in.

Usually, people are locked in by the lack of an export feature, or an obscure file format. In mapping, people are locked in by licences.

In Google Maps’ case, you can create your own work by tracing over aerial imagery. But you can’t use this work elsewhere, because of the licences and terms of use. (The phrase “derived work” usually crops up around now.)

At the Society of Cartographers’ Summer School last week, there was a great workshop on making a mashup from Google imagery – but when the question arose about taking the data out of Google and using it elsewhere… well, then things got a little hazy.

Google could fix this by saying that tracing from their imagery is ok – just like Yahoo have done. Or, alternatively, they could give us a clear “no”. Right now no-one really knows where they stand.

The Data Liberation Front ask people to vote for their favourite suggestions. We’ve added this as a suggestion and, at the time of writing, it has 585 votes – over four times the next most popular.

You can vote by going to OpenStreetMap has shown the way in liberating geodata – maybe it’s time that some of these other guys caught up.