Author Archives: HarryWood

About HarryWood

Posting mostly in a Communication Working Group capacity (and often with text written collaboratively among CWG and others) About me on the OSM wiki

1 million map contributors!

We passed a milestone recently which deserves some celebration: OpenStreetMap has now reached 1 million map contributors. Over the lifetime of our project, 1,000,000 different users have created a user account and made edits to the map! 1 million is a big number, and the growth of our community continues apace.

“At its core, OpenStreetMap is all about humans sharing knowledge about the places they visit, live and work in. Our fantastic project is only possible thanks to over a million individuals who generously volunteer their time to help others find their way in the world.”
Peter Barth – OSMF board

If you haven’t tried contributing to OpenStreetMap yet, it’s not too late to join a million others! sign up today and map your neighbourhood!

You may remember we celebrated 1 million users way back in 2013, but that was the count of signed up users — an impressive number, but not everyone who signed up has yet contributed to the map (Why have users signed up but not contributed? The reasons for this have been described in various ways over the years but similar participation patterns are seen in many online communities)

Simon Poole has been crunching the changeset logs and watching the count of map contributors tick past 1 million:

 

Read Simon’s diary entry for more analysis including a look at recent editor software usage trends. Of course we are tracking many other stats on our ‘stats’ page too.

So let’s celebrate! One million and still growing!

Welcome OpenStreetMap France

OpenStreetMap FranceWe’d like to welcome OpenStreetMap France (openstreetmap.fr) as an official OpenStreetMap Foundation Local Chapter.

OpenStreetMap France was established back in 2011 as an independent non-profit voluntary association, and over the years they have achieved great things, including organising hosting (with some funding and donated resources) of some important services, not just for the French users, but for the global OpenStreetMap ecosystem:

Of course they also host the openstreetmap.fr website, for which a new version is under development, and a French-speaking forum, and they support projects like OpenLevelUp, Caribe Wave/HAND, and Jungle Bus.

But beyond hosting things, they’re also a general advocacy organisation for OpenStreetMap in France, seeking to liaise with other associations, citizens, local governments, small and big companies, national mapping agency, postal services and anyone seeking an entry point within the OSM project and community.

A few months ago they were formally recognised as a OpenStreetMap Foundation Local Chapter.

Benoit Fournier is signing the Local Chapter agreement

Benoît Fournier of the OSM France and Ilya Zverev of the OSMF Board are signing the Local Chapters Agreement at FOSS4G Europe 2017 in Paris, photo by Jody Garnett with license CC-BY,

Additionally an OSMF Advisory Board seat was accepted by Christian Quest from OpenStreetMap France.

This makes five local chapters formally established by the foundation, and there are more to come!

If you’d like to know more about OpenStreetMap France, contact them directly or discuss with the community on the ‘talk-fr’ mailing list. Or if you’d like to meet face-to-face, check out the SotM-France local conference. Now in its 6th year, in 2018 it will be taking place in Bordeaux June 1st-3rd

Welcome OpenStreetMap UK

Catching up on news from SoTM in Japan, we have a couple of new local chapter announcements. Firstly, welcome OpenStreetMap United Kingdom!

Signing of the OSMUK Local Chapter Agreement at State Of The Map 2017 in Japan.
Left to right: Frederik Ramm, Ilya Zverev, Jon Harley, Rob Nickerson, Gregory Marler, Paul Norman, Martijn van Exel

This new local chapter organisation, like others, is a formal registered organisation (in this case a UK “Community Interest Company”) setting out with the mission to further the interests of OpenStreetMap, working with the OSMF, but focussed on this particular territory.

Their documented aims are to…

  • Increase the quality and quantity of data about the UK in OpenStreetMap.
  • Improve and increase the size, skills, toolsets and cohesion of the OpenStreetMap community in the United Kingdom.
  • Promote and facilitate the use of OpenStreetMap data by individuals and organisations in the United Kingdom.
  • Promote and facilitate the release by organisations in the United Kingdom of data that is suitable for use in OpenStreetMap.

The United Kingdom was the birthplace of the OpenStreetMap project, and has been home to a registered organisation for a long time now; the OpenStreetMap Foundation itself! But the OSMF is global in scope, and is these days very globally distributed in terms of membership, contributors, and resources. The UK community has also, for long time, had a dedicated mailing list, irc channel, and forum, but until recently, no formal organisation to support it. OSMUK is getting set-up with a web page (osmuk.org) and will be tackling the UK’s specific flavour of community building and government/industry engagement challenges. See also
Why our Local Chapter status matters
on the OSMUK blog.

If you’re in the UK OpenStreetMap community you should join OSM UK! and also join in with discussions happening on their new loomio group.

OSMUK was not the only local chapter to be formally signed on at the conference. Stay tuned for another announcement! If you’d like to know more about setting up local chapters, check out the Local Chapters page.

OpenStreetMap Awards

DINACon digital sustainability


The OpenStreetMap community recently received an award at the DINACon conference on digital sustainability.

OpenStreetMap is showing itself to be sustainable in various ways. Our database is available to download in its entirety, which helps to ensure the hard work of our contributors will always live on regardless, but our core servers keep humming thanks to many generous donations to OSMF over the years, as well as funding from our corporate membership programme. Most important of all, our community continues to thrive, attracting new members, while retaining wonderfully dedicated long-term contributors (to whom this award was dedicated). Thank you to everyone who helps make OpenStreetMap sustainable.

Thanks also to Simon Poole, Stefan Keller, and Michael Spreng who accepted the award, as well as running an OpenStreetMap session at this conference.

While we’re on the topic of awards…

OpenStreetMap Awards 2017

During our own conference, the international State Of the Map, in Japan back in August, we held the OpenStreetMap Awards ceremony. If you missed it, these are the results:

  • The Core Systems Award went to Kevin Bullock – For making available two new satellite imagery layers directly from DigitalGlobe, which drastically increased coverage in OSM editors
  • The Innovation Award went to Tobias Zwick – For the StreetComplete android application, which drives thousands of attribute edits to OSM
  • The Influential Writing Award went to Ramani Huria – Great blog posts about community, mapping, techniques for OpenStreetMap in Tanzania and Africa.
  • The Greatness in Mapping Award went to Jochen Topf – For the global polygon fixing effort, which updated all the old-style multipolygons and continues to fix thousands of errors every day
  • The Expanding the Community Award went to Pete Masters – For 4 years as Missing Maps project coordinator, introducing countless contributors to OSM, supporting communities in Bangladesh, DRC, CAR and many other countries. Remarkable outreach for humanitarian mapping & OSM in general.
  • The Improving Latin America Award went to GeoChicas – Working against sexism and making projects to integrate OSM’s users
  • The Improving Africa Award went to the State of the Map Africa Organising Team – For putting huge efforts into making SOTM happen in Africa for the very first time
  • The Improving Asia Award went to Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team Indonesia – For training disabled people and their carers to map the areas they live. A great example of how inclusivity and diversity can by both fostered and supported by OpenStreetMap
  • The Ulf Möller Memorial Award went to Martin Raifer – For the Overpass Turbo web based data mining tool.

The OSM awards website has a list of all nominees, and details of why they were nominated (also on this blog). Well worth a read. It’s a catalogue of spectacular individual contributions made to OpenStreetMap throughout the 2016/2017, and all of these nominees deserve our congratulations.

 

Thanks to the SoTM 2017 organisers

The international OpenStreetMap conference, State of the Map 2017, took place last weekend in Aizu Wakamatsu, Japan. Three fantastic days of talks and workshops on all things OpenStreetMap. Thanks to all those who attended!

Here’s the group photo (for those who got up early to be in it). There are many more photos to be found here on the facebook group (cc-by-sa-4.0)

Huge thanks also to the SOTM organising team. This team is made up of a group of long-term conference organising stars, and also the local team who this time were our wonderful hosts in Japan.

The folks handling the video recording have done a very speedy job of publishing all the recordings from the the two main rooms:

Session videos

 

As mentioned, there’s also a big collection of photos on a facebook group. Also check out the #sotm tweets, and a SOTM 2017 wiki page where we can link these things as well as blog write-ups etc.  We’ve shared so many ideas a this conference, let’s try to keep track of them all! Also stay tuned for more blog posts following-up on some conference themes.

OpenStreetMap Featured Images

Every week we choose a new OpenStreetMap “featured image”. Here’s our images of April, May and June:

2017 2017 2017 2017 2017 2017 2017 2017 2017 2017 2017 2017 2017

(click to view bigger images and explanations)

An OpenStreetMap Featured Image (otherwise known as “Image Of The Week”) is chosen each week. Recently we’ve been putting them out on twitter and facebook, so you’ll most likely have seen them there. We’re still a little behind on posting them, so consider this a preview! But featured images also appear each week on the wiki main page.

If you come across an image which you would like to put forward as image of the week (either your own image or somebody else’s), head over to “Featured image proposals” and edit that page to make your suggestion there. Anyone can join in with the process of investigating, improving and discussing the suggestions, and picking an OpenStreetMap image of the week each week. If wiki editing is difficult for you, just email CWG with your suggestions.

New and renewed corporate members

Last October we introduced the new OSMF Corporate Membership tiers. We’d like to thank the following organisations who have entered or renewed onto the new corporate membership tiers:

    

        

   

 

         

Toursprung         NextGIS

 

Your organization can become a Corporate Member for as little as €500 for ‘Supporter’ level, all the way up to €20,000 for ‘Platinum’ level. The above all opted for ‘Bronze’ level, except Toursprung and NextGIS who are ‘Supporters’. Coming soon we’ll bring you news of some new ‘Gold’ level members! Each level has different benefits but the biggest benefit of all is the knowledge that your organization is doing its part to support the growth and sustainability of the OpenStreetMap project. So thanks again to all our Corporate Members!

OpenStreetMap Featured Images

As well as putting out an April fools day joke, there’s another thing we should remember to do when we’re three months into the year. Every three months we roll over to a new page of our archive of OpenStreetMap “featured images”. Here’s our images of January, February and March:

Mabel laser cutter.jpg Pic4Carto mapstats.png OSM-in-German-Tech-Museum.jpg Osmviz.jpg Ateljekartan.com green paris poster.jpg Ramani Huria STEM boot camp school students.jpg OSMLanduse.png OSM Mapathon in Albania 07.jpg Lauri Vanhala Helsinki map.jpg Taipei meet-up Discussing notes.jpg Osm-in-opendataday-2017.jpg Noahmapping-statsimage.jpg FOSSGIS 2017 group photo.jpg

(click to view bigger images and explanations)

An OpenStreetMap Featured Image (otherwise known as “Image Of The Week”) is chosen each week. Recently we’ve been putting them out on twitter and facebook, so you’ll most likely have seen them there. Actually we’re a little behind on posting them, so consider this a preview! But featured images also appear each week on the wiki main page.

If you come across an image which you would like to put forward as image of the week (either your own image or somebody else’s), head over to “Featured image proposals” and edit that page to make your suggestion there. Anyone can join in with the process of investigating, improving and discussing the suggestions, and picking an OpenStreetMap image of the week each week. If wiki editing is difficult for you, just email CWG with your suggestions.

Version 2 of the iD editor

Version 2 of the “iD” editor recently went live. New features include better support for right-to-left languages, authenticated calls to OpenStreetMap servers, and an updated Mapillary viewer.

Viewing street-level Mapillary photos within the iD editor, also super hi-res imagery appearing by default in Cape Town

Viewing street-level Mapillary photos within the iD editor (also super-hi-res imagery appearing by default in Cape Town)

Behind the scenes the editor code has been made more modular, helping future development and customisation. Bryan Housel has been leading the development effort. Read more on his blog post here. Big thanks to him and all the developers involved.

iD is the default editor appearing on the OpenStreetMap website when you click ‘edit’. Never tried? You’ll need to get signed up and logged in first. Follow the ‘walkthrough’ to learn how ‘iD’ works. This is improving all the time, but there’s also a range of desktop or mobile app alternatives. See the list of editors.

New Local Chapter: Swiss OpenStreetMap Association

We’d like to welcome the Swiss OpenStreetMap Association (sosm.ch) as our latest official OpenStreetMap Foundation Local Chapter.

sosm-handshake

Paul Norman and Simon Poole (centre) officially finalising the paperwork for the new local chapter at the State Of The Map conference last month in Brussels

With this formal agreement SOSM and the OSM Foundation have declared that we “shall seek to mutually support the activities of the other”. It doesn’t entail any drastic changes, but from a practical standpoint, it does mean SOSM have “official” status which may help them in any dealings with government and political/advocacy groups. It also means they are formally permitted to use the OpenStreetMap trademarks.

Of course we hope to see other countries formalising their foundation status in this way. Switzerland may also serve as an inspirational example in the way this group has been established in support of the local community. As described on their about page “SOSM was created to further the goals of the OpenStreetMap movement, to strengthen the contacts with authorities and industry, to facilitate the activities of OSM community members in Switzerland and to represent the Swiss OSM community in other organisations … providing some structure when needed and remaining as lightweight and as unobstrusive as possible”, which seems like an excellent way to orientate a local OpenStreetMap organisation.

You can also read more about the Swiss OpenStreetMap community on this OpenCaged data interview with Simon Poole about OSM in Switzerland, and you can follow SwissOSM on twitter.