Category Archives: Uncategorized

freethepostcode updates

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 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.

OSM decentralisation

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, subversion source is at, mailing lists are at and the bug database trac is at

All this takes load off of the main machine and allows for easy migration in the future.

UK Motorway Carriageways Complete!

Etienne Cherdlu writes:

I’m pleased to announce that the main carriageways of all mainland UK motorways have been completed. Over 3,000 km of roadway.

This does not include motorways in Northern Ireland nor does it include motorway sections of A roads, so there is still plenty of work to do.

Indeed, the user contributions are now outstripping the current editing software! In the works is functionality to classify the motorways so they can be rendered more effectively in our map drawing software and used effectively in any future routing algorithms.

Still, this is an excellent result, well done to the UK Motorways team, who could still use your help in adding/refining junctions and checking for consistency.

In other news, OpenStreetMap gained it’s 1000th registered user just before the new year.