Mikel notes that geonames.org have combined a bunch of free data to make an aggregated geocoder for cities and postcodes. I’m not confident their UK postcode data is free, but it’s a fantastic idea and one worth charging for.
Author Archives: Steve Coast
Lots of people seem to want updates to freethepostcode like different countries supported, different coordinate systems. I’ve created a pledge which reads
“I will upgrade freethepostcode.org to allow postcodes from other countries, allow other coordinate systems (like National Grid) and write a europe-wide geocoder based on this Free data but only if 15 other people will enter 40 postcodes over the next year OR do the translations OR give 10 pounds.”
— Steve Coast, agitator
This is basically to ensure I’m not wasting my time doing the work.
The melting computer
Most of OSM’s computers are hosted at UCL, including dev the devloper machine. The other night Mikel noticed that dev was down. I called to make sure nobody had touched it and then called network operations to see if it was blocked for some reason. Neither was the case.
I asked someone to power cycle it but they said it was hot to the touch and smelt of burning plastic. I told them to leave it unplugged.
Went to the machine today, took the case off and found that the PSU fan had died. Took the PSU to various electronics shops but it turned out to be some strange mini atx PSU and nobody stocked them. So had to buy new case, PSU and a backing fan.
Then transplanted the machine from the old to new case (which took a while) and now the dev machine is back, alive and well.
Why Europe Needs to Provide its Own Public Geodata
Interesting INSPIRE centric article about how all the National Mapping Agencies will consolidate their holdings through EU Directive(s). I’m really still puzzling over why this is important. I think creating our own data is going to be better than political engagement on this, the NMAs are very well entrenched and we already hold the moral high ground.
I’ll be speaking about OSM at XTech 2006 on 16-19 May in Amsterdam
I’m speaking at LUGRadio Live 2006 on Sat 22nd and Sun 23rd July 2006 in Wolverhampton. This is at WV1 1LY and someone should add that to freethepostcode 🙂
Isle of Wight workshop
http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/index.php/OSM_Workshop What: Isle of Wight mapping workshop and general get together for OpenStreetMap.org fans where we plan to map the entire Isle using GPS on cars, cycling and by foot. This is our first official meetup and will result in a released map of the Isle of Wight. When: Friday 5th to Sunday 7th May. Cottage probably booked 30th April -> 7th May and all welcome at any point. Where: Isle of Wight, off the south English coast: http://www.openstreetmap.org/index.html?lat=50.688627413475814&lon=-1.376037&zoom=11 Who: You? I need 50 GBP non-refundable deposit per person for cottage by the 27th Feb ideally. Once booked we can add people an upgrade the cottage size. You can attend for free, of course, but without a cottage we have no base for things like computers so please stay with us :-) Final cost for accomodation likely to be between 60-100 GBP depending on sponsorship and numbers. Paypal steve at asklater.com with 4% added for paypal charges or email for bank or cheque details. People welcome to crash on the floor if space available. Sponsorship: I'm going to people asking for sponsorship of car rental, accomodation, food, GPS units etc. If you can provide sponsorship or know someone who can then get in touch. Details, details: Please update the wiki with travel info, offer lifts, equipment you'll be bringing, etc.
OSM has traditionaly run nearly everything off on one box. The wiki, mailing lists, source repository… everything. These little bits have now been moved to a VM machine donated by bytemark. Thus the wiki is now at wiki.openstreetmap.org, subversion source is at svn.openstreetmap.org, mailing lists are at lists.openstreetmap.org and the bug database trac is at trac.openstreetmap.org.
All this takes load off of the main machine and allows for easy migration in the future.
I’ve put together three map animations of progress in OpenStreetMap: London, Birmingham and the UK. Your browser might crop the timestamp at the top so it’s best to download and play it directly.
OpenStreetMap has had a couple of server problems over the past few days with a debian upgrade breaking the server. This is now fixed.