(English) weeklyOSM 452

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OpenStreetMap protest against Art 13 of the EU Copyright Directive 1 | © OpenStreetMap

[Actual Category]

  • Michael Reichert suggests turning off OSM services or adding banners to protest against the EU plan to implement the new, controversial, Copyright Directive. However, the question remains as to why the protest against EU politics is more important than existing or proposed restrictions of freedom elsewhere.

About us

  • The transfer of weeklyOSM to the FOSSGIS server and the subsequent necessary maintenance work has been completed. Users might have noticed some minor interruptions in service last weekend whilst this was taking place. We would like to thank Peter Barth and Andreas Hubel for the transfer. We especially want to thank Anthony Bennett aka @internetgeog of www.internetgeography.net for many years of administration of the site, which he has maintained exemplarily since 2014.


  • Jan S proposes better differentiation between various kinds of police facilities. Jan has drafted a proposal and is seeking comments.
  • Members of the Polytechnic University of Milan (Politecnico di Milano) created a deforestation mapping wiki page to improve the understanding and mapping of land coverage to make analysis and visualisation of environmental issues such as deforestation easier.
  • Paul Allen asks whether superroutes are good, bad or ugly. In his post on the tagging mailing list he mentions some pros and cons of the controversial construct. During the discussion it was also asked whether relations of type=route containing child relations should be preferred over superrelations.
  • Antoine Riche pointed to undiscussed wiki changes about cycleway tagging which resulted in a long discussion about how to deal with oneway restrictions.
  • German mappers are voting on the deprecation of relations of type associatedStreet in Germany.



OpenStreetMap Foundation

  • The minutes of the OSMF Licence Working Group meeting of 14 February have been published.
  • The OSM Operations Team announced on Twitter that one of OSM’s tile caches received a Denial of Service attack by someone using Amazon servers and an Load Impact User-Agent.


  • The FOSS4G North America, an open geospatial technology and business conference, will take place from 15 to 18 April 2019 in San Diego, USA. The program is available on the conference’s homepage.
  • The next mapathon of MAMAPA will take place on 28 March at the Abendakademie in Mannheim. Beyond the humanitarian objective of the Mapathon, MAMAPA promotes the integration of new immigrants in Germany, in which locals and migrants map in tandem. Through the joint work prejudices and stereotypical thinking are reduced and mutual trust is strengthened.
  • The 7th (seventh!) annual conference organised by OpenStreetMap France will take place from 14 to 16 June in Montpellier (34), on the campus of the Paul Valéry University. Proposals for presentations in 5′, 25′, 55′ or even 2-hour workshops will be accepted until 15 April.

Humanitarian OSM

  • Russell Deffner calls for help with mapping flooded areas in Mozambique and Zimbabwe exacerbated by Cyclone Idai. More information about current tasks and how you can help can be found on the corresponding wiki page.
  • Nina Strochlic covers in National Geographic how the Bidibidi refugee camp in North Uganda is transforming into a permanent city. She points out how humanitarian mapping, HOT in particular, has helped in documenting the transformation and provided valuable data for planning and managing the quickly evolving area.
  • A story on MapGive, an initiative of the U.S. Department of State’s Humanitarian Information Unit, details how updated aerial imagery has helped crowdsourced humanitarian mapping. MapGive helped mapping efforts of Missing Maps in Uganda and Bangladesh by providing support with current imagery. The blog post shows differences in aerial imagery over the years and a before and after comparison of OSM data around refugee camps in Northern Uganda.

Open Data

  • The regional conference and conference on Latin American Open Data Abrelatam19 will be held at Quito from 28 to 30 August 2019.


  • TriMet in 2009 launched the open source trip planner “OpenTripPlanner” that combines public transport transit with walking and biking. The tool, which can use public transport data in General Transit Feed Specification “GTFS” format and is based on OSM data, gained some popularity within the OSM community. The company announced a new version of its tool that can also incorporate data from Uber, SHARE NOW (formerly car2go) and BIKETOWN and uses real-time locations of vehicles and bikes to calculate routes. A beta version with data for Portland, OR, USA is available.
  • The Android app OSMTracker, which is popular with OSM mappers, no longer shows maps as a background to tracks. OSMTracker uses the generic user-agent from the osmdroid library which was recently blocked by the OSM Operations Team. The tile usage policy requires application-specific user agents.
  • Fabian Kowatsch, of HeiGIT, announced that the HeiGIT Big Spatial Data team published a public world-wide instance of the ohsome OSM History Analysis Platform including an API, an updated dashboard and the beta prototype map interface ohsomeHEX (OSM History Explorer). All this allows you to analyse the evolution of any OSM tag for arbitrary regions and time periods in a simple way. Several examples are given in earlier blogs which now can be adapted for arbitrary regions around the world. Ideas for further enhancements are most welcome.


  • Version 5 of Openrouteservice was published. The service, developed by The Heidelberg Institute for Geoinformation Technology, bears the name of the Jupiter moon Io.

Did you know …

  • … the OSM Software Watchlist (release status) by Wambacher? It has been extended to cover another 15 OSM applications.
  • … the tagging of a centre turn lane? This is described using the tags lanes:both_ways= 1 and turn:both_ways = left.

Other “geo” things

  • Dr. Michele M Tobias asked #gischat on Twitter “Can you tell your GIS/mapping career story in one tweet?” Read the nice stories and please tell your OSM story as well. 😉
  • As Marius Watz has tweeted, the Norwegian municipality Trysil decided not to name streets but numbered thousands of cabin buildings instead. The website nrk.no reported that the step caused chaos for tourists, desperate cottage owners and emergency services.
  • Bryan Housel asks for help to “link branded businesses in OpenStreetMap to wikidata”.
  • The Guardian reports on desire lines: “illicit trails that defy the urban planners”. (Note: there is a small amount of data in OSM identifying such paths, see 1 and 2).
  • In an article on Medium, Caitlin Dewey covers the story of the Fruit Belt neighbourhood in Buffalo, New York which had been replaced on Google Maps by something called “Medical Park”. The article follows the residents and their investigation into how Google may have acquired inaccurate neighbourhood data from Pitney Bowes and how that came to be. She also points out how little control the community had over the mislabelling. In comparison, the neighbourhood had only been added to OSM a few days ago with plenty of room for map improvements in the area.
  • Jorge Andres, a volunteer cartographer for MapAction, discusses, on their corporate blog, how to most effectively represent topographical relief when mapping volcanic hazards. He suggests that 3D visualisations are more effective, and in 2D contour lines tend to obscure significant details.
  • Tom Lee, Mapbox’s lead on policy, testified before the US Senate Judiciary Committee regarding privacy law reform.

Upcoming Events

Greater Vancouver areaMetrotown mappy Hour2019-03-22canada
CorkMapping Party @ UCC2019-03-23ireland
BremenBremer Mappertreffen2019-03-25germany
Joué-lès-ToursRencontre Mensuelle2019-03-25france
GrazStammtisch Graz2019-03-25austria
PortmarnockErasmus+ EuYoutH_OSM Meeting2019-03-25-2019-03-29ireland
ZurichMissing Maps Mapathon Zurich2019-03-27switzerland
MontpellierRéunion mensuelle2019-03-27france
Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB)National Mapathon2019-03-27belgium
UCL Louvain-la-NeuveNational Mapathon2019-03-27belgium
KUL LeuvenNational Mapathon2019-03-27belgium
UMONS MonsNational Mapathon2019-03-27belgium
Montrougerencontre locale des contributeurs de Montrouge et alentours2019-03-27france
LübeckLübecker Mappertreffen2019-03-28germany
VUB BrusselNational Mapathon2019-03-28belgium
MannheimMannheimer Mapathons2019-03-28germany
ULIEGE LiègeNational Mapathon2019-03-28belgium
UNAMUR NamurNational Mapathon2019-03-28belgium
UGENT GentNational Mapathon2019-03-28belgium
UCL Louvain-la-NeuveNational Mapathon2019-03-30belgium
ULIEGE LiègeNational Mapathon2019-03-30belgium
BochumMappt die Innenstadt – Mappingtag für Einsteiger*innen und Fortgeschrittene2019-03-31germany
StuttgartStuttgarter Stammtisch2019-04-03germany
NantesRéunion mensuelle2019-04-04france
DresdenStammtisch Dresden2019-04-04germany
La RicheLa Riche (37)#Ateliers d’initiation à OpenStreetMap2019-04-06france
Kyotoお花見!オープンデータソン in 京都2019-04-07japan
RennesRéunion mensuelle2019-04-08france
BordeauxRéunion mensuelle2019-04-08france
TaipeiOSM x Wikidata #32019-04-08taiwan
LyonRencontre mensuelle pour tous2019-04-09france
MunichMünchner Stammtisch2019-04-09germany
Salt Lake CitySLC Mappy Hour2019-04-09united states
ViersenOSM Stammtisch Viersen2019-04-09germany
CologneKöln Stammtisch2019-04-10germany
MontpellierState of the Map France 20192019-06-14-2019-06-16france
Angra do HeroísmoErasmus+ EuYoutH_OSM Meeting2019-06-24-2019-06-29portugal
MinneapolisState of the Map US 20192019-09-06-2019-09-08united states
EdinburghFOSS4GUK 20192019-09-18-2019-09-21united kingdom
HeidelbergErasmus+ EuYoutH_OSM Meeting2019-09-18-2019-09-23germany
HeidelbergHOT Summit 20192019-09-19-2019-09-20germany
HeidelbergState of the Map 2019 (international conference)2019-09-21-2019-09-23germany
Grand-BassamState of the Map Africa 20192019-11-22-2019-11-24ivory coast

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 Nakaner, Polyglot, Rogehm, SK53, Softgrow, SunCobalt, TheSwavu, YoViajo, derFred, kartonage, muramototomoya.