Author Archives: OpenStreetMap

About OpenStreetMap

Posts written "by OpenStreetMap" were written collaboratively by the Communication Working Group and/or other OpenStreetMap Foundation folks.

OSMF Microgrants Program: Congratulations to Selected Projects

After many weeks of examining the 48 submitted proposals for the OSMF Microgrants Program, the committee is pleased to announce the 12 projects which have been selected for funding. While the entire range of submissions included thoughtful proposals with potential for impact, a shortlist was formed to keep under the proposed budget of up to €5,000 per project, up to €50,000 total. The selected proposals represent the top tier of ideas that will help shape and impact the OpenStreetMap community in the coming year with microgrant funding.

The accepted proposals are:

  • Leaflets to Promote OSM
    A series of leaflets promoting OpenStreetMap aligned to our Local Chapter aims. Costs will cover the printing and distribution of the leaflets. Design work is expected to be covered by volunteer time.
OpenStreetMap Ireland board members during recent online meeting.
Tobias Zwick, developer of StreetComplete
  • Teaching and learning OSM in Albania through LibreTech School
    Organising teaching classes for local OpenStretMap contributors with less or without experience in editing and using OSM. Volunteer’teachers’ will organize online classes with under-represented groups in Albania using amongst others explanatory videos about getting started with OSM and the OSM community.
  • Mapping Villages and Settlements in Kosovo
    Twelve mapathons are planned to be organized with high school students to map their settlements. This will be done in cooperation with ASSET (an afterschool activity project that aims to develop employability and entrepreneurial skills in youth and a positive attitude to their future ASSET).
  • HIV facilities mapping in the Philippines on OpenStreetMap
    HIV has been very rampant in the country and PLHIV are at most vulnerable specially in times of disaster and outbreak. This project aims to map out and validate all HIV facilities’ location and contact details all over the Philippines on OSM.
MapUganda – some of the team members.
  • Road Completion project
    Process automatically the road networks official datasets and display the comparison in a way that will help the mappers to add or fix the road network in OpenStreetMap.
  • OpenStreetMap Calendar
    OpenStreetMap Calendar simplifies event organisation and staying up-to-date on nearby events.

All projects must conclude within 12 months from their start, and should show promising results as they commence in the near future. Next steps will include final funding agreements for accountability, disbursement of funds, and kicking off the accepted projects.

A total of €42,368 is authorized by the board for this round of microgrants, although some of this will be reduced due to savings on shared video chat infrastructure and other minimal adjustments. No projects were allowed to have their nature or content modified in order to facilitate selection, but were judged on the merit of their originally submitted format. Community endorsements were considered in the selection process, and input of the OSMF Board was provided in regards to the shortlisted projects. 

The Microgrants Committee includes Christopher Beddow, Janet Chapman, Geoffrey Kateregga, Clifford Snow, and Hanna Krüger. The committee wishes to profusely thank Joost Schouppe for his advising and refereeing during the process, as well as Craig Allan and Michael Collinson who served as neutral observers in the latter half of the committee proceedings. Finally, a profound thanks goes out to all who put in the effort to build a project proposal focused on improving OpenStreetMap, a dedication which does not always come with reward, but demonstrates the spirit of volunteerism and innovation that helps the OpenStreetMap project thrive. 

The OSMF Microgrants Committee

About the OSMF Microgrants: framework, committee minutes and timeline

About photos in this post: The twelve applicants were asked for photos. The post includes those received up to the time of publication.


Do you want to translate this and other blogposts in another language..? Please send an email to communication@osmfoundation.org with subject: Helping with translations in [language]

The OpenStreetMap Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation, formed to support the OpenStreetMap Project. It is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free geospatial data for anyone to use and share. The OpenStreetMap Foundation owns and maintains the infrastructure of the OpenStreetMap project, is financially supported by membership fees and donations, and organises the annual, international State of the Map conference. It has no full-time employees and it is supporting the OpenStreetMap project through the work of our volunteer Working Groups. Please consider becoming a member of the Foundation.

OpenStreetMap was founded in 2004 and is a international project to create a free map of the world. To do so, we, thousands of volunteers, collect data about roads, railways, rivers, forests, buildings and a lot more worldwide. Our map data can be downloaded for free by everyone and used for any purpose – including commercial usage. It is possible to produce your own maps which highlight certain features, to calculate routes etc. OpenStreetMap is increasingly used when one needs maps which can be very quickly, or easily, updated.

A new record for daily mappers and new users!

Number of daily mappers from mid-April to mid-May 2020 (left) and in recent years (right).
OpenStreetMap statistics on osmstats.neis-one.org © Pascal Neis. Screenshot supplied by Tobias Knerr. Map data © OpenStreetMap contributors.

OpenStreetMap has been breaking records in May – the record for the most daily mappers, the most newly registered mappers in a day, and the most newly active mappers have been broken numerous times. 

On May 12, a new record for daily mappers was set with 6,999, and then two days later, the record was beaten again with 7,209 mappers. There have also been records set for newly registered mappers, with 6,259 on May 14 as well as newly active mappers, 1,019 on the same day. You can see more trends from the OSM Stats site: http://osmstats.neis-one.org/?item=members

We were wondering if any of these numbers might be due to unusual activity of (e.g.) mappers who were normally mostly mapping during weekends and due to Covid-19 lockdown they now map during the week or due to increased organised editing in particular countries. For this reason, we contacted Pascal Neis and asked him whether he could provide some insight. Pascal was helpful, quickly researched the matter and provided his insights below (thanks!).

According to Pascal, the mentioned week in May had a high activity of members contributing in Peru, Botswana, Central African Republic and other countries. In particular, there was a high amount of newly registered members who started contributing to the Cusco region in Peru. It is also noticeable that the new mappers contributed mostly on weekdays.

OpenStreetMap changesets filtered by #mapimpacto. Data: 28 April – 16 June 2020.
OSM statistics on osmstats.neis-one.org © Pascal Neis.  Map data © OpenStreetMap contributors.

Pascal also took a close look at relevant hashtags and found some useful information: In Peru (not all, but) a significant amount of contributors utilized the #mapimpacto hashtag. Global Active Learning (GAL) School Peru, which received a 2020 HOT microgrant, co-ordinated HOT tasks there. In Botswana several mappers used the #COVBots hashtag. Besides this, we found that in India there was an effort by Educate Girls.

Going back to the newly registered accounts, this growth has been happening for some time — OSM has been growing for years, with about 1.5 million total contributors and more than 6.5 million registered users as of May 30. You can see detailed stats over time here.

It’s great to see new mappers joining our community. If you haven’t mapped in a while, why not take a look at your neighborhood, somewhere you’re familiar with, or somewhere new. You can see some options and learn more at https://wiki.openstreetmap.org. Also have a look at our good practice guide. And if you want to learn more about mapping with OpenStreetMap as an organization, check out the Welcome Mat at https://welcome.openstreetmap.org and remember to add any organised activities on the OSM wiki, according to the OSM organised editing guidelines.

Happy mapping!

Andrew and other CWG members, with input from Pascal Neis


Do you want to translate this and other blogposts in another language..? Please send an email to communication@osmfoundation.org with subject: Helping with translations in [language]

The OpenStreetMap Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation, formed to support the OpenStreetMap Project. It is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free geospatial data for anyone to use and share. The OpenStreetMap Foundation owns and maintains the infrastructure of the OpenStreetMap project, is financially supported by membership fees and donations, and organises the annual, international State of the Map conference. It has no full-time employees and it is supporting the OpenStreetMap project through the work of our volunteer Working Groups. Please consider becoming a member of the Foundation.

OpenStreetMap was founded in 2004 and is a international project to create a free map of the world. To do so, we, thousands of volunteers, collect data about roads, railways, rivers, forests, buildings and a lot more worldwide. Our map data can be downloaded for free by everyone and used for any purpose – including commercial usage. It is possible to produce your own maps which highlight certain features, to calculate routes etc. OpenStreetMap is increasingly used when one needs maps which can be very quickly, or easily, updated.

SotM 2020 is here, more ways to get involved!

Photo on the left by Manfred Stock. State of the Map 2020 logo by Ed Nicolai, CC-BY-SA 4.0

State of the Map 2020 is just a few weeks away and here are many ways you can still get involved, aside joining scheduled online sessions.

Lightning Talks

Do you want to hold a Lightning Talk during SotM 2020? Submit a pre-recorded 5 minutes video of your Lightning Talk on an OpenStreetMap related topic. Read the how to guide for pre-recorded SotM talks, upload your video here and add your session to this SotM 2020 Wikipage.

The deadline for lightning talk submissions is 28 June 2020.

Self Organized Sessions

Besides the main SotM programme we are offering space for self-organized sessions. If you have an idea for a panel or even a workshop, a self-organized session is the right place for that. The only requirement is that your topic has to be related to OpenStreetMap. We are using the SotM 2020 Wiki for the organization of such sessions so that everybody is able to jump in without any formal barrier.

Of course the Code of Conduct of SotM also applies to the self-organized sessions.

You can find more information on how to prepare and submit a self organized session for SotM 2020 here.

Volunteers

We are looking for volunteers to help in the following roles during SotM 2020:

  • Infodesk – To help answer questions on the SotM Telegram group, SotM Twitter and the IRC Channel.
  • Session Host – To announce the speakers before the talks and lead the Questions & Answers sessions after the talks.
  • Technical Assistant – To help the speaker and the session host with the video conference equipment. 
  • Broadcasting – To do the streaming during the conference. 

You can read more about these roles and add your name here if interested: https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/State_of_the_Map_2020/volunteers

Conference swag

This year everything is slightly different – including swag. Feel free to help yourself with the designs for t-shirts and stickers and don’t hesitate to share with us photos of your printed swags 🙂

The State of the Map Working Group

Do you want to translate this and other blogposts in another language..? Please send an email to communication@osmfoundation.org with subject: Helping with translations in [language]

The State of the Map conference is the annual, international conference of OpenStreetMap, organised by the OpenStreetMap Foundation. The OpenStreetMap Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation, formed in the UK to support the OpenStreetMap Project. It is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free geospatial data for anyone to use and share. The OpenStreetMap Foundation owns and maintains the infrastructure of the OpenStreetMap project and you can support it by becoming a member. The State of the Map Organising Committee is one of our volunteer Working Groups.

OpenStreetMap was founded in 2004 and is a international project to create a free map of the world. To do so, we, thousands of volunteers, collect data about roads, railways, rivers, forests, buildings and a lot more worldwide. Our map data can be downloaded for free by everyone and used for any purpose – including commercial usage. It is possible to produce your own maps which highlight certain features, to calculate routes etc. OpenStreetMap is increasingly used when one needs maps which can be very quickly, or easily, updated.

Toward resolution of controversies related to iD

The OpenStreetMap Foundation Board of Directors seeks to resolve controversies that have periodically arisen around updates of and enhancements to the iD editor. This request for comment is expected to lead to adoption of community structures that will not answer to the Board or be influenced by the Board, in keeping with the OSM philosophy that the Board supports OSM but does not tell anybody what to map or how to map. We ask that comments be made on the OSM-talk mailing list (register to OSM-talk) or -if you are an OSMF member- to the OSMF-talk mailing list discussion (register to OSMF-talk).

OSMF offers and recommendations for iD governance

iD is the simple, friendly, default web editor for OpenStreetMap, centrally important software for the project. There’s a lot of passion about its development, and that appears sometimes to become a problem.

The OSMF Board recently convened a small gathering to discuss how to improve the development environment for iD. While there have certainly been times when major and minor decisions in iD have triggered conflict, the vast majority of development discussions are non-polarizing and productive. The convening focused on the key areas where problems emerge (most often, though not only, tagging), and ways to allow for constructive disagreement and resolution, without their deteriorating into disputes that hurt the project.

Essentially, the maintainers of iD need a productive space to carry out their work; contributors, users and other interested parties need to be heard; the decision-making process needs to be understood and respected; and disputes need a way to escalate and resolve.

There’s no technical solution to this kind of situation. What’s required is process and organization. To that end, below are several offers and recommendations from the OSMF Board that the iD project may consider supporting and adopting. We hope that the iD project finds these suggestions helpful and looks forward to discussing what sounds workable and what does not.

OSMF will establish an appeal process

OSMF is seriously considering creating or identifying a body to adjudicate various kinds of technology disputes, capable of drawing on expertise ad hoc to determine the best path forward for the community. Software projects could opt-in into using this appeal process; it would not be required. This appeal process may simply involve arbitrating the disagreement between different parties or projects and helping to find agreement between them; or might involve making or overruling decisions. This mechanism is under early discussion, yet to be defined.

If disputed decisions cannot be resolved directly within the iD project by its maintainers and stakeholders, then the issue can be escalated to this appeal process.

The role of this group would certainly not be to force developers to add certain features. However, if issues are escalated to the group, it could verify that newly added features (e.g., presets, validation rules, or inclusion of external services) are in line with a consensus view.

If this sounds potentially helpful at this stage, OSMF asks iD to share input and expectations to make the process most effective.

OSMF will support development of better systems for tagging decisions; iD documents status quo and separation of concerns

The only way to assess the “correct” tags is a baroque evaluation of the various sources of OSM documentation – the wiki, tagging mailing list, taginfo. This leaves editing and consumption tools in the position to “decide” on what tags are appropriate or not for OpenStreetMap. When this turns contentious, at best this is an unwelcome distraction; and at worst, development can be blocked. To this end, the OSMF welcomes the development of better documentation, decision-making and a curation process for tags. Where needed, the OSMF is prepared to aid such efforts with infrastructure and other support. This would provide a greater degree of clarity for tool developers. If an action taken on presets in iD is contested, the issue could be escalated to the appeal process described above.

For iD’s part, while work on tagging systems is ongoing, we recommend now adding detail on the status quo approach iD takes to tagging decisions in CONTRIBUTING.md. It’s clear that iD aspires to refrain from making decisions on what tags are appropriate for OpenStreetMap; rather, iD aims to represent the consensus view on tags in presets. “Consensus” is currently subjective, and the iD project strongly (we believe, please say so if otherwise) supports efforts in OSM to bring more clarity to how tags are developed.

Presets can be requested in issues, and in PRs, as well as discussion in the issue/PR. The maintainer of iD reserves the right to include or exclude certain tags/presets on technical or usability grounds, though the goal is to avoid curating tags and making decisions on the merits of tags in general. If there seems to be consensus, based on evaluation of source documentation, and it meets a need for other users, presets will be accepted. If there is not clear consensus, the preset (or validation rule, etc.) won’t be accepted.

Institute quarterly planning meetings, and publish bi-weekly sync time and notes

OSMF recommends iD hold a quarterly (or so) video meeting with iD stakeholders. This meeting is a chance to step out of the everyday work of iD and make sure work is on the right path. The agenda would assess development over last quarter, discuss requirements and priority needs, and make plans for the next quarter and beyond. Additionally if any decisions or topics have proven difficult or disputed over the past quarter, this is a time for direct discussion. Notes will be taken and distributed.

Additionally, iD holds a bi-weekly sync, but it is not well known. iD could raise awareness of the bi-weekly sync by announcing it on additional channels, including https://ideditor.blog/; and make sure notes from the sync are visible and accessible.

iD can improve clarity on decision making and communication

We recommend that in CONTRIBUTING.md iD maintainers add a new section which explains how decisions are made in iD. Some points made here are contingent on adopting other recommendations. The new section would explain the following.

  • There are many places to discuss and input on iD development – GitHub issues and PRs, the monthly syncs, quarterly planning meeting, and in response to announcements on https://ideditor.blog/.
  • The developers of iD are committed to being responsive and transparent. By default, iDs maintainers determine the sequence and timing of fixes, changes and enhancements in order to optimize technical work.
  • Invite stakeholders to join an “acceptance testing” process, where feedback on releases is sought and handled for a time delimited period of time.
  • Ultimate decision on accepting PRs is with iD’s maintainer, Quincy Morgan.
  • If there is a dispute on a decision, that will be escalated to the quarterly planning meeting and/or an appeal process managed within the OSM Foundation.

Additionally, we recommend that iD publish a roadmap and regularly update status on major iD releases. iD3 plans were last shared at SotM US. The approach has changed, with more focus on updated UI, and more iterative efforts on componentization. It would be good to get a clear idea of where things are, and where things are going (as much as is clear now), and especially where help is needed in order to build momentum on this important effort.

Document how Code of Conduct is handled

iD has a Code of Conduct but it lacks details on how to report a harmful incident within the iD development environment, and how those reports are adjudicated. Previously Code of Conduct complaints were addressed openly by opening an issue on GitHub, but maintainers later directed people towards the private OSMUS committee. Clarity on process is just as important, if not more, in order for a CoC to be helpful to the project. If that process is not well defined, then thought is needed, perhaps within the quarterly planning meeting. Our recommendation is to add a section on CoC process.

Allan Mustard
Chairperson, OSMF Board of Directors

The OpenStreetMap Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation, formed to support the OpenStreetMap Project. It is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free geospatial data for anyone to use and share. The OpenStreetMap Foundation owns and maintains the infrastructure of the OpenStreetMap project, is financially supported by membership fees and donations, and organises the annual, international State of the Map conference. It has no full-time employees and it is supporting the OpenStreetMap project through the work of our volunteer Working Groups. Please consider becoming a member of the Foundation.

OpenStreetMap was founded in 2004 and is a international project to create a free map of the world. To do so, we, thousands of volunteers, collect data about roads, railways, rivers, forests, buildings and a lot more worldwide. Our map data can be downloaded for free by everyone and used for any purpose – including commercial usage. It is possible to produce your own maps which highlight certain features, to calculate routes etc. OpenStreetMap is increasingly used when one needs maps which can be very quickly, or easily, updated.

OSMF and GraphHopper joint press release: GraphHopper Routing Engine 1.0 Released

Note: The OpenStreetMap Foundation and GraphHopper publish this joint press release due to the Gold Corporate Membership of GraphHopper GmbH. If you want to be an OSMF Corporate Member too, you can join at https://join.osmfoundation.org/corporate-membership/

On 25th May the release of version 1.0 for the open source GraphHopper routing engine was announced. The first version 0.1 of the routing engine was released in 2013 and since then it has grown into a mature solution that is integrated on openstreetmap.org since late 2014 and is now used by thousands of companies around the world.

The new release contains a fast alternative routes feature, as well as a new customizable routing that allows people to modify the routing behaviour even without programming knowledge.

New feature of GraphHopper Routing Engine: Fast Alternative Routes
Customizable routing: Here the bike mode is forced to prefer official bike routes even though this means a big detour. Another use case would be a cargo bike where additional properties like road width are taken into account.


For a demo and more details about the new features you can read the full announcement at graphhopper.com

One key player in the GraphHopper community is the GraphHopper GmbH. The mission of the GraphHopper GmbH is to build the routing software stack of the future, with as many open source software as possible and also utilizing open data, like OpenStreetMap. The GraphHopper GmbH supports the OpenStreetMap project with sponsoring the routing service for openstreetmap.org, with using and improving the data as well as spreading the word. Since 2018 the GraphHopper GmbH is also a Gold Corporate Member of the OSMF.

What is GraphHopper
The GraphHopper Routing Engine is an open source software project started in 2012. The GraphHopper GmbH is a company founded in 2016 in Germany to support the development for its open source projects like the GraphHopper Routing Engine and jsprit. 

GraphHopper routing is integrated on www.openstreetmap.org, together with OSRM routing.

What is OpenStreetMap
OpenStreetMap was founded in 2004 and is a international project to create a free map of the world. To do so, we, thousands of volunteers, collect data about roads, railways, rivers, forests, buildings and a lot more worldwide. Our map data can be downloaded for free by everyone and used for any purpose – including commercial usage. It is possible to produce your own maps which highlight certain features, to calculate routes etc. OpenStreetMap is increasingly used when one needs maps which can be very quickly, or easily, updated.

What is the OpenStreetMap Foundation
The OpenStreetMap Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation, formed to support the OpenStreetMap Project. It is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free geospatial data for anyone to use and share. The OpenStreetMap Foundation owns and maintains the infrastructure of the OpenStreetMap project, is financially supported by membership fees and donations, and organises the annual, international State of the Map conference. It has no full-time employees and it is supporting the OpenStreetMap project through the work of our volunteer Working Groups. Please consider becoming a member of the Foundation.

State of the Map 2020 – Call for Posters

Submit a poster today!

Building on previous State of the Map culture, we love to hear what has been done with OpenStreetMap data, and as the motto for this year also implies too “Art of the Map” we would love to see more. Therefore, we invite you to participate in our poster exhibition for the virtual State of the Map 2020!

Your poster could show how well your home region is mapped, it could be a beautiful new style or map. It might focus on a community project or statistics, it might be a poster explaining and inviting people to OpenStreetMap. What’s important, is we want it to be about OSM. We’re also welcoming academic posters about research around OpenStreetMap data.

Need more inspiration? Take a look at the posters from 2019.

Rules for submission

  • Poster should be for A0 size (841×1189mm)
  • Poster should be related to OpenStreetMap
  • Poster should be open, innovative and transparent (no-copying)
  • Poster must be your own work (individual, team or institution)
  • Poster should be under open licence (CC-BY-SA 3.0 or later recommended or CC0 🙂 )
  • Maximum 2 entries per person, team or institution

How to enter

  • Upload your poster to OSM Wiki
  • File size maximum 30-40 MB
  • Format PDF
  • Please send an email to sotm@openstreetmap.org with a description of your poster, for example the background of the project or whatever you find important to mention in the context of the poster – all that you would tell people if you show them your poster. We will publish this text together with the poster on the SotM website https://2020.stateofthemap.org/calls/posters/
  • Please mention also the link of the uploaded poster in that email, so that we could know which of the uploaded posters is yours.

Timeline and Deadlines

  • Start: 10 May 2020
  • Deadline: 30 June 2020

The SotM team hopes to shortlist up to 20 posters that will be published on our website and some other SotM channels under CC BY SA 3.0 (or later)

The State of the Map Working Group


Do you want to translate this and other blogposts in your language..? Please send an email to communication@osmfoundation.org with subject: Helping with translations in [your language]

The State of the Map conference is the annual, international conference of OpenStreetMap, organised by the OpenStreetMap Foundation. The OpenStreetMap Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation, formed in the UK to support the OpenStreetMap Project. It is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free geospatial data for anyone to use and share. The OpenStreetMap Foundation owns and maintains the infrastructure of the OpenStreetMap project and you can support it by becoming a member. The State of the Map Organising Committee is one of our volunteer Working Groups.

OpenStreetMap was founded in 2004 and is a international project to create a free map of the world. To do so, we, thousands of volunteers, collect data about roads, railways, rivers, forests, buildings and a lot more worldwide. Our map data can be downloaded for free by everyone and used for any purpose – including commercial usage. It is possible to produce your own maps which highlight certain features, to calculate routes etc. OpenStreetMap is increasingly used when one needs maps which can be very quickly, or easily, updated.

Announcing the OSM Foundation’s Call for Microgrant Applications

2020 will be the first year that the OSM Foundation operates the new microgrants project. In the coming weeks, we hope to hear from you about a bold, community-driven, and impactive OpenStreetMap project idea that will benefit from a microgrant of up to 5000 euros. We welcome a broad range of projects, with the minimum requirement being a clear connection to OpenStreetMap.

What is a microgrant? In our case, it is a modest amount of funds awarded to applicants in order to fund direct expenses of a project. For an idea of successful projects, you can take a look at the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team’s 2019 microgrant awardees. Keep in mind that the OSM Foundation (OSMF) has a wider focus than the humanitarian sector, spanning our global community, and welcomes applications with any focus that relates to OpenStreetMap. We particularly encourage applicants to consider the core values from the OSMF’s mission statement and how any microgrant work can incorporate them.

The OSMF Microgrant Program focuses on simple grant proposals, and we will swiftly decide on what to fund. Our goal is to avoid a complicated and long application and decision process. You should submit a brief and concise proposal, and we plan to quickly announce the awardees.

We encourage submissions from individuals, groups, and organizations who have a clear idea they want to pursue. Each project should be completed within 12 months of the microgrant being awarded this spring. Microgrants are open to all OSMF members, and can be submitted in any language. If you are not yet a member of OSMF then you can apply to join up until the time you submit a microgrant application, and be eligible for an award. Please note there is an active contributor program that may allow you to join the OSMF at no cost. 

In light of the ongoing health crisis regarding COVID19, we will not be awarding microgrants for projects which require offline group gatherings and in person meetings, although these ideas are certainly valuable for future rounds.

Funding can be used for a variety of purposes. You may need tools and supplies for mapping activity, funds for training materials, technology expenses for a series of virtual mapathons, prizes for an online coding, mapping, or writing contest, and many more examples. Please embrace your own creativity and not feel limited by the range of examples.

We encourage you to consult with your local OpenStreetMap community when planning a microgrant application, and make sure you adhere to community guidelines in the scope of the project. If accepted for a microgrant, you will be responsible for reporting progress, signing a grant agreement, and making sure to follow the detailed microgrant rules. It is strongly suggested that your project uses the funding to enable volunteer work to have a wider and stronger impact than it would without funding.

The call for microgrants will open on April 19th, 2020 and we will continue to accept applications through May 10th, 2020. In order to submit,  visit the OSM Wiki page and click on “Start your application” to enter the template. When this is complete, send a message to microgrants at osmfoundation.org. We also encourage sharing your application on osmf-talk when it is submitted. If you need help with the submission process, please feel free to contact the Microgrants Committee for help. If you don’t have enough time to prepare your plan and application, please consider submitting it in a possible future round of microgrants.

Once the submission period closes on May 10th, we invite the community to review the complete list of submissions and provide feedback on the wiki page. We also will accept feedback by email to microgrants at osmfoundation.org and via osmf-talk

Complete timeline:

  • April 19: call for microgrant applications opens
  • May 10: final date for submission (23:59 Pacific Time Zone, USA). 
  • May 10-TBD: community feedback period
  • Late May: announcement of awards

For more details, see the complete rules and guidelines on the OSM wiki and contact us at microgrants at osmfoundation.org with any questions. This is the first time the OSMF is sponsoring such an activity, and we look forward to learning together about how this benefits our community and how to build a transparent, effective, and inclusive microgrants program for everyone involved. We are grateful for the opportunity to make funds available to the community and hope to hear your ideas in the coming weeks.

Chris Beddow, OSMF Microgrants Committee Chair

Do you want to translate this and other blogposts in your language..? Please send an email to communication@osmfoundation.org with subject: Helping with translations in [your language]

The OpenStreetMap Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation, formed to support the OpenStreetMap Project. It is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free geospatial data for anyone to use and share. The OpenStreetMap Foundation owns and maintains the infrastructure of the OpenStreetMap project, is financially supported by membership fees and donations, and organises the annual, international State of the Map conference. It has no full-time employees and it is supporting the OpenStreetMap project through the work of our volunteer Working Groups. Please consider becoming a member of the Foundation.

OpenStreetMap was founded in 2004 and is a international project to create a free map of the world. To do so, we, thousands of volunteers, collect data about roads, railways, rivers, forests, buildings and a lot more worldwide. Our map data can be downloaded for free by everyone and used for any purpose – including commercial usage. It is possible to produce your own maps which highlight certain features, to calculate routes etc. OpenStreetMap is increasingly used when one needs maps which can be very quickly, or easily, updated.

Thanks to our new tile cache and domain name sponsors

Content Delivery Network of tile delivery caching servers.

The OpenStreetMap Foundation Operations Working Group wants to thank all the recent donations of nodes for our tile cache CDN: 

Tile cache nodes allow us to serve all users by answering map tile requests closer to the user, giving a faster response time, reducing rendering server load, and saving international bandwidth.

Caches added in 2019

In 2019, thanks to sponsors, caches have been hosted in the following countries:

Australia

Brazil

France

Germany

New Zealand

Sweden

Switzerland

Ukraine

United States


Chinese Dragon by Nyo, public domain

OpenStreetMap has an internal server naming theme based on fictional dragons, as in “here be dragons“.

Full list of tile caches here and on a map.

Would you like to host a tile cache?

If you operate an internet exchange, host company, or otherwise have a site with good internet connectivity and high regional bandwidth, you can look at the tile CDN node requirements. We welcome hosting of tile caches elsewhere, and are particularly looking for tile caches in Africa and Asia. If you are interested, please contact us.

Domain name sponsoring by Gandi

Gandi, in addition to hosting the new tile cache server Gackelchen in Bissen, Luxembourg and supporting OpenStreetMap France (an OSM Foundation Local Chapter) are now very generously sponsoring many of our domain names. We would like to thank them for their support.

Operations Working Group

Do you want to translate this and other blogposts in your language..? Please send an email to communication@osmfoundation.org with subject: Helping with translations in [your language]

The OpenStreetMap Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation, formed to support the OpenStreetMap Project. It is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free geospatial data for anyone to use and share. The OpenStreetMap Foundation owns and maintains the infrastructure of the OpenStreetMap project, is financially supported by membership fees and donations, and organises the annual, international State of the Map conference. It has no full-time employees and it is supporting the OpenStreetMap project through the work of our volunteer Working Groups. Please consider becoming a member of the Foundation.

OpenStreetMap was founded in 2004 and is a international project to create a free map of the world. To do so, we, thousands of volunteers, collect data about roads, railways, rivers, forests, buildings and a lot more worldwide. Our map data can be downloaded for free by everyone and used for any purpose – including commercial usage. It is possible to produce your own maps which highlight certain features, to calculate routes etc. OpenStreetMap is increasingly used when one needs maps which can be very quickly, or easily, updated.

Request for feedback on proposal for OSMF membership based on sizeable contribution to the project

MWG logo based on the official OSM logo by Ken Vermette, CC-BY-SA 3.0 & trademarks apply. Figures by Pascal Neis, reproduced with permission.

Last December at the Annual General Meeting of the OpenStreetMap Foundation a proposal for membership in the foundation based solely on sizeable contribution was accepted with a very good result (91%):

The membership fee for associate membership, which normally is tied to the regular membership fee, may be waived if the person applying for membership can demonstrate that they have consistently made sizeable contributions to OpenStreetMap, for example by mapping.

The OSMF Membership Working Group will, together with the Board of Directors, define what counts as “sizeable contributions”.

Just like paid membership, membership under the membership fee waiver programme must be renewed annually.

Please read the rationale here.

In January, the Membership Working Group (MWG) discussed the implementation. Sorry for the long silence since; the MWG would now like to open the discussion and ask for your feedback and comments on the implementation of the new active contributor membership.

As described in the rationale for the vote, this is no charity. We want active contributors to be members of the OSMF and be able to vote for the benefit of the project. The membership fee should not be a barrier.

Our proposal is to automatically grant memberships to mappers who request it and who have contributed at least 42 calendar days in the last year (365 days).

Mapping days is not perfect, but we need a benchmark that is objective, easy to verify, and simple for us to measure and implement.

Why 42 days? If we measure contributions in mapping days by OSMF members who map (83%), roughly half of them map more than 42 days per year. We would expect a “slightly exceptional” contribution in terms of mapping days.

We also discussed abuse. You could of course make tiny contributions like wiggling a single node on 60 days, and maybe go undetected and get your membership. But that would be fraud, and the membership could be revoked if MWG finds out that the contributions are not meaningful.

On non-mapping contributions to the project

Not everyone contributes by mapping, and some of the most familiar names in our members list barely map. Some are very involved, for example, in organizing conferences. Those other forms of contribution should be recognised as well, and the board would take circular decisions on these applications.

Please share your thoughts

We would like to hear your thoughts on the proposal. You can:

Comments can be in any language you are comfortable with. We will make the best effort to have them translated.

Please share your thoughts before the 30th of April 2020.

Thank you.

Michael Spreng
Membership Working Group

Do you want to translate this and other blogposts in your language..? Please send us an email to communication@osmfoundation.org with subject: Helping with translations in [your language]

The OpenStreetMap Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation, formed to support the OpenStreetMap Project. It is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free geospatial data for anyone to use and share. The OpenStreetMap Foundation owns and maintains the infrastructure of the OpenStreetMap project, is financially supported by membership fees and donations, and organises the annual, international State of the Map conference. It has no full-time employees and it is supporting the OpenStreetMap project through the work of our volunteer Working Groups. Please consider becoming a member of the Foundation.

OpenStreetMap was founded in 2004 and is a international project to create a free map of the world. To do so, we, thousands of volunteers, collect data about roads, railways, rivers, forests, buildings and a lot more worldwide. Our map data can be downloaded for free by everyone and used for any purpose – including commercial usage. It is possible to produce your own maps which highlight certain features, to calculate routes etc. OpenStreetMap is increasingly used when one needs maps which can be very quickly, or easily, updated.

SotM 2020 will be a virtual conference

Photo on the left by Manfred Stock. State of the Map 2020 logo by Ed Nicolai, CC-BY-SA 4.0

Due to the high infection risk of SARS-COV-2 virus and all its consequences like travel restrictions, cancellation of physical meetings, “physical distancing”, and more, a physical SotM is not possible this year.

The local team – who have done great work preparing this conference so far – have suggested to change the physical conference to a virtual one. This wasn’t just an idle talk: they have already started a cool open source software project – https://gitlab.com/billowconf/billowconf for managing this! If you have any idea of how to make it better, please don’t hesitate to get on board.

So the State of the Map working group adopted the proposed plan, and agreed to have an online SotM conference this year instead of a physical one.

We know about your disappointment of not meeting each other physically this year (we are disappointed too), but after a few months of lockdown and “physical distancing” we are sure that we will all be excited to be reading and seeing each other in chats and videos. We will share more on the technical plans as the date comes closer.

The online conference will take place on 4-5 July 2020 (duration shortened to two days instead of three). We planned an extended Q&A session after each talk and plenty of free spaces for discussions. So that the OpenStreetMap community can have a great week-end together.

The State of the Map Working Group


English blogpost by Christine Karch, proofreading by Frederik Ramm

Interested to help the SotM Working Group..? We are looking for you.

The State of the Map conference is the annual, international conference of OpenStreetMap, organised by the OpenStreetMap Foundation. The OpenStreetMap Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation, formed in the UK to support the OpenStreetMap Project. It is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free geospatial data for anyone to use and share. The OpenStreetMap Foundation owns and maintains the infrastructure of the OpenStreetMap project and you can support it by becoming a member. The State of the Map Organising Committee is one of our volunteer Working Groups.

OpenStreetMap was founded in 2004 and is a international project to create a free map of the world. To do so, we, thousands of volunteers, collect data about roads, railways, rivers, forests, buildings and a lot more worldwide. Our map data can be downloaded for free by everyone and used for any purpose – including commercial usage. It is possible to produce your own maps which highlight certain features, to calculate routes etc. OpenStreetMap is increasingly used when one needs maps which can be very quickly, or easily, updated.

Do you want to translate this and other blogposts in your language..? Please send an email to communication@osmfoundation.org with subject: Helping with translations in [your language]