weeklyOSM 482


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Proposed feature “Utility Markers” – voting until 2019-10-26 1 | © Pyrog – Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International


  • The MapRoulette team tweeted about improvements to documentation. They are also seeking feedback and volunteers to help.
  • Frederik Ramm asked for opinions on various areas mapped as parks (including “micro parks”). The issue arose as part of a dispute in the US which has been referred to the DWG.
  • Michael Brandtner’s proposal to add cash_withdrawal= automatically to a supermarket chain in Germany received mixed feedback on the German mailing list (automatic translation) and forum (automatic translation).
  • John Kennedy published a JOSM Plugin RelationDissolve to simplify creating new boundaries from those already in OpenStreetMap. When merging existing boundaries it automatically dissolves away any shared borders.
  • Voting for ChameleonScales’ proposal for amenity=toy_library has started, and ends on 27 October 2019. Toy libraries only lend games and toys, not books.
  • Fanfouer’s proposal for mapping markers for utility services, such as gas and water pipes, service valves, power lines, hydrants and many more, is up for voting until 26 October 2019.

OpenStreetMap Foundation

  • Michael Reichert asked the OSMF Board why Microgrants have been implemented without consulting the community and received an answer from Joost Schouppe.
  • Draft minutes for the Local Chapters Working Group meeting on 9 October 2019 have been made available on the OSMF wiki.


  • Ilya Zverev asks mappers to complete a questionnaire on regional mapping differences. He will present the outcome at the next local SotM conference on 25 to 27 October 2019 in Prizren, Kosovo.
  • Imagico wrote a detailed personal report about SotM 2019 with the following sections: venue, conference size, the talks, audience, scholarships, and the future of SotM.
  • On 29 October the 5th Vienna Geo Meetup will take (de) place. This Meetup is intended to enable interested people from the GIS sector to exchange information. Once more, scene-setting lectures are planned to stimulate further discussion.
  • On 12 October a “Missing Maps” mapathon was held (automatic translation) for the first time in Russia (Moscow). It was organised by “Doctors without borders” together with the “Greenhouse of social technologies”. MSF said that 36 participants in 2.5 hours drew 86% of the map of the Beitbridge area in the southern part of Zimbabwe.

Humanitarian OSM

  • At the celebrations of the International Day for #DisasterRiskReduction on 13 October, Heidelberg University’s GIScience Research Group posted a blog entry about the tools they have created for humanitarian aid during and before disasters and the resources they can provide for workshops, conferences and mapathons, or research projects and related activities.


  • kaggle.com offers a free course titled Geospatial Analysis. The five-hour course includes lessons about GeoPandas, which is a library for working with geospatial data in Python, coordinate systems, interactive maps, geospatial data manipulation and proximity analysis.


  • Maps exist for almost every need, so it goes without saying that there is a map highlighting motorcycle parking using OSM data.


  • 115.бел, a website for reporting issues with properties and public spaces, has been updated (automatic translation). Citizens and municipalities can report faults with roads, cycleways, street lighting, etc., and receive a response from the municipality or a property management office. OpenStreetMap is used as a background map, and address data appears to be OSM-derived. The main osm.org tile server is apparently used.


  • Facebook’s attribution of OSM data — or the lack of it — caused discussions on the OSMF mailing list. While some people want to see consequences for the ongoing violation of our terms, Frederik Ramm from the OSMF board as well as Simon Poole from the License Working Group are pointing to the drafted Attribution Guidelines, which should be agreed on, hopefully, soon.


  • Andreas Bürki asks (automatic translation), on the mailing list Talk-ch, why skuettel.ch sets a third party cookie on umap.osm.ch for site visitors. The reason is the example maps on the start page, which use third party sites for data, and do actually present a security problem.


  • Brian DeRocher suprised the OSM developers with a large pull request (i.e., 64 commits in total) to add “Microcosms” to OSM’s website. “Microcosms” are intended to become a feature to support local groups of mappers and the events they participate in.

Did you know …

OSM in the media

  • Pokémon Go couldn’t be played on the Greek island of Salamis. The whole island was tagged with natural=bay, so the game treated it as if it were seawater. While this has been corrected in OSM, Niantic (developer of Pokémon Go) has yet to import the data and continues to interpret it as water. Action from the developer following the Reddit thread that brought the issue to attention has given hopes for a fix (via Eurogamer).

Other “geo” things

  • The Guardian reported on a project which plans to scan all the dry land on Earth with aircraft-based LiDAR. The object is to preserve a record of the world’s cultural, environmental and geological treasures. The resulting 3D map, with a resolution of 20 cm, is estimated to cost $15 million.
  • In his paper Creating, Managing, and Maximising the Potential of Large Online Georeferenced Map Layers, Chris Fleet reports on the georeferencing program and the use of the historical map collection of the National Library of Scotland, which also makes its holdings available to the OSM community.
  • Geospatial World published an article about the evolution of Google Maps. Although the article goes back to 2005, when Google started its map service, detail is rather scanty.
  • Pacific Gas & Electric provided shapefiles instead of a functioning map for power shutdowns in advance of fire warnings in California. This has received criticism, but the San Francisco Chronicle has created a user-friendly slippy map with Leaflet. The power outages affected more than 1 million people, and follow last year’s fatal Camp Fire which was attributed to faults on power lines.
  • Pratyush Tripathy and Teja Malladi (Geospatial Lab, Indian Institute of Human Sciences) write, on the website Mongabay, about the use of Sentinel-1 satellite imagery for mapping the extent of recent floods in Assam and Bihar. The results, which were presented on, unattributed, OSM base maps, are intended to provide an example of how such mapping can help during rescue missions.
  • Geoscience Australia has announced that it will no longer print and sell topographic maps from December 2019. Production of paper maps has stopped due to budget cuts and a large decline in the demand for paper maps.
  • pocketnavigation.de reviewed (automatic translation) the Garmin Overlander, an “all-terrain” SatNav, which comes with OSM pre-installed.
  • Massey University Press have published We are Here: an atlas of Aotearoa by authors Chris McDowall and Tim Denee. The work is a thematic atlas of New Zealand (Māori: Aotearoa). Of particular interest to map enthusiasts is that some notes, data, code (Python, R) and style sheets (Mapnik) have been published on their GitHub site.

Upcoming Events

Where What When Country
Arlon Espace public numérique d’Arlon – Formation Contribuer à OpenStreetMap 2019-10-16 belgium
Berlin Missing Maps Mapathon – Putting the Wolds’s Vulnerable People on the Map 2019-10-17 germany
Vienna 63. Wiener Stammtisch 2019-10-17 austria
Karlsruhe Karlsruhe Hack Weekend 2019-10-19-2019-10-20 germany
Salt Lake City OSM Utah Mapping Night 2019-10-22 united states
Nottingham Nottingham pub meetup 2019-10-22 united kingdom
Žilina Missing Maps Mapathon Žilina #6 2019-10-22 slovakia
Arlon Espace public numérique d’Arlon – Formation Les itinéraires balisés et OpenStreetMap 2019-10-23 belgium
Lübeck Lübecker Mappertreffen 2019-10-24 germany
San José Civic Hack & Map Night 2019-10-24 united states
Prizren State of the Map Southeast Europe 2019-10-25-2019-10-27 kosovo
Rapperswil 11. Micro Mapping Party Rapperswil (OpenStreetMap Mapathon) 2019-10-25 switzerland
Yosano-chō 京都!街歩き!マッピングパーティ:第13回 ちりめん街道 2019-10-27 japan
Bremen Bremer Mappertreffen 2019-10-28 germany
Düsseldorf Stammtisch 2019-10-30 germany
Ulmer Alb Stammtisch Ulmer Alb 2019-10-31 germany
Dhaka State of the Map Asia 2019 2019-11-01-2019-11-02 bangladesh
Brno State of the Map CZ+SK 2019 2019-11-02-2019-11-03 czech republic
Stuttgart Stuttgarter Stammtisch 2019-11-06 germany
Wellington FOSS4G SotM Oceania 2019 2019-11-12-2019-11-15 new zealand
Encarnación State of the Map Latam 2019 2019-11-14 paraguay
Grand-Bassam State of the Map Africa 2019 2019-11-22-2019-11-24 ivory coast
Cape Town State of the Map 2020 2020-07-03-2020-07-05 south africa

Note: If you like to see your event here, please put it into the calendar. Only data which is there, will appear in weeklyOSM. Please check your event in our public calendar preview and correct it, where appropriate.

This weeklyOSM was produced by Elizabete, Nakaner, PierZen, Polyglot, Rogehm, SK53, SunCobalt, TheSwavu, YoViajo, derFred, geologist, jinalfoflia, anonymus.