Author Archives: Steve Coast

OSMs first edit war

Live in a disputed area like the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus? How should you name your streets when major governments near you disagree on things like whether they exist?

Such is the dilemma facing David Janda on the talk mailing list:

I am one of two people who are making an effort to map northern Cyprus. For those who do not know, Cyprus is a divided island since 1974. There is the Republic of Cyprus which is internationally recognised in the south, and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus in the north, which is not. For a backgrounder do a timeline in Google.

The issue I have is regarding names of places.

Since 1974 places were renamed, and as an example, the village where I live, and where I have started the project is called Ozanköy (Turkish). Prior to 1974 it was called Kazaphani (Greek). Now, all signs for the past three decades have been in Turkish, and as OSM is used as a navigational aid I have used the Turkish names and Greek as a secondary where applicable. Example:


However, after a few days of editing I noticed that one user using Potlatch changed the tag to:


This has been going on for the past week, and it is taking up my time to correct them.

So, what to do? Is there some adjudication procedure with OSM?

Routable OSM

Routing is going to be the next big thing in OSM. It adds a huge amount of value to an already valuable dataset, and several methods are being explored over on the routing mailing list. Check out this video demo of pyroute:

AND donate entire Netherlands to OpenStreetMap

“Automotive Navigation Data” (AND) [since renamed GeoJunxion] is a leading provider of location, routing, mapping and address management are donating a street network of the entire Netherlands. Yes, an entire country.

This is basically phenomenal.

We’ll have our first country complete from this data, which AND and I want to work with the community to import. This is not least because fantastic work has already been done in Amsterdam and elsewhere by the Digital Pioneers supported openstreetmap netherlands community. AND will be at the State of the Map, and you should be too 🙂

Here’s the press release:

AND and OpenStreetMap join forces to create digital maps
Rotterdam – AND Automotive Navigation Data has agreed with the OpenStreetMap Foundation to donate digital maps of the Netherlands, China and India to the OpenStreetMap community. The aim is to create the most up-to-date map in the market. With this partnership AND recognizes the power of a community and the Web 2.0 developments.

OpenStreetMap gives the community the opportunity to create maps with up-to-date geo-data and shows the results immediately. Pure community collaboration at its best. “Overall we want to enable users of mapping data to also be contributors, from reporting errors to doing full surveys.” According to Steve Coast, one of the founders of the OpenStreetMap project.

“It is known that a small percentage of a map is not representing the present situation. With the help of the community AND aims to close this gap and be able to a deliver a map that is 100 % correct.” According to Maarten Oldenhof, CEO AND Automotive Navigation Data.

According to Wikipedia Web 2.0 refers to “a perceived second generation of web-based communities and hosted services – such as social-networking sites, wikis and folksonomies – which facilitate collaboration and sharing between users.” AND is busy today with the process of bringing maps online with the possibility of online user generated updating. “We think Web 2.0 will be the ultimate tool for map updates. With this partnership we work with the people that have a keen insight into how a community works around maps” according to Maarten Oldenhof.

Initially, AND will make its street level data of the Netherlands and the major road networks of China and India available to the OpenStreetMap community. “We are very happy with the map donation of AND. With this additional map data we hope to create a bigger mapping community and be able to cover more and more areas” according to Steve Coast.

[AND was since renamed GeoJunxion in 2020]