Category Archives: editors

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.

iD In-Browser Editor Now Default on OpenStreetMap

The State of the Map 2013 venue in the new iD editor

The State of the Map 2013 venue in the new iD editor

If you click the edit button today on OpenStreetMap, you will find a new, easier to use in-browser editor.

With OpenStreetMap rapidly becoming the go-to map for thousands of mobile apps and websites, more and more users are seeking an easy way to add their local knowledge to the map – without the technical background of OpenStreetMap’s early adopters. The new all open source web editor, named iD, was launched last May as an additional option to make the editing experience much easier for first-time mappers.

Since then, the iD developers have worked hard to close feature gaps and improve performance such that it can now take its place as the default editor for iD offers a walk-through tutorial for first-time users, inline documentation for tags, and a more comprehensive help system than previous in-browser editors.

Potlatch, the existing online editor, continues to be developed for intermediate-level users and will remain as an option in the edit dropdown. For a full list of available editors, take a look at our wiki. You can configure your personal default  in your user settings.

Head over to and give the new editor a spin.

JOSM Tutorials?

Over a year ago I did a handful of JOSM tutorials
( /wiki/JOSM ), for example this one on
making a simple edit for the first time using JOSM: , or this one on
merging two ways into one: . JOSM has changed
since then, and I should probably re-do those tutorials. What
tutorials do you think we need to have for JOSM? Are you having
trouble using JOSM? Ask questions in the comments below, and I’ll see
if I can record a video that answers your question.

JOSM goes multi data layer

The latest JOSM now supports multiple data layers again. This was requested since about the day after I removed the feature over a year ago ;-).

As another big data source hits the main database (AND’s netherland-parts-of-china-and-india map) the feature got more urgent. I think it is especally cool for people who want to compare two unrelated datasets ;-).

Every file open and every download opens the data into a new, seperate layer now. You can merge these layers using the merge button in the layer dialog. By selecting an layer in the layer dialog, you can switch the current editing dataset as needed.

Now for the bad news:

As the feature is a ground shaking one for the whole JOSM data holding structure, I expect many new bugs introduced :-(. If you run into problems that block you from mapping, please revert to the latest release from last week.

For Plugin writers:

Plugins, that used Main.ds could be affected as well. Main.ds now holds the dataset of the current editing layer rather than all the data together. If you are a plugin writer and your plugin is broken and you cannot fix it to work with josm-latest *and* the josm-1.5 release, please link a version which is working with the latest release at

New Release: JOSM 1.5 “Hits The Road”


after almost 9 months of more or less JOSM-coding, I finally announce a new JOSM release. In shortage of a better name and in spirit of the good old Sam & Max adventure game (which I finished yesterday.. Hurray!), I hereby call this release: “Hit The Road”. 😀

Before I get to the new features, I want to Frederick Ramm, Christof Dallermassl, Francisco R. Santos, Bruce Cowan, Thomas Walraet, Martijn van Oosterhout and all the other guys I forgot who send in patches, bug reports and ideas and who wrote plugins for the community. 🙂

Ok, now to the facts:

online-help: F1 (or

Some new features since the last release

  • 0.4 complaint. I bet you already noticed that in the latest beta 😉
  • Tons of new modes and tools as split / combine ways, reorder nodes in
    a line, reorder segments in a way, (un)select all…
  • Better support for plugins. There are over a dozen plugins
    already available. A basic plugin downloader has been integrated into
    JOSM to ease the plugin installation process. See for more
  • The MarkerLayer displaying annotations from gpx tracks.
  • More visualization options, e.g. drawing the segment ordering number
    or drawing boundary rectangles of all downloaded areas.
  • HCI improvements as one-time warnings, customization support for the
    toolbar on top (including annotation presets), detach the dialogs
    on the right, welcome screen, cuter images…
  • And of course: fixed tons of bugs.

I hope you enjoy the new release and good mapping.

Ciao, Imi.

JOSM goes Applet


Practically nobody knowed it, but JOSM had a possibility built in to be launched as an applet. This was implemented many month ago. Now I finally got myseld into fixing the last problems (including a bit of server hacking) and made a demonstration setup.

You can either use the standard login or create your own at Note, that this is currently a test server and so your entered data, including your account, is thrown away after some time (unless we decide otherwise). On the good news, feel free to browse around, it will not disturb the main server in any way (hopefully).

I also setup a Testserver API of the upcoming Version 0.4 (the Ruby on Rails thingie Steve is coding on). It runs in development mode, so a) data may be resetted frequently and b) it is not a clever target for doing benchmarks.

Testserver API (0.4):

Try it out! It won’t bite you.

Ciao, Imi.