(English) weeklyOSM 496

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OSM and the streets in my city 1 | © Leaflet | © map data OpenStreetMap contributors


  • Andy Mabbett noticed that JOSM flags building=disused were outdated but no alternative tags can be found in the OSM wiki. Kevin Kenny responded that JOSM uses the life cycle prefixes disused:building=* and abandoned:building=* instead.
  • The European Water Project is still actively contributing to the mapping of places with drinking water. Not just in terms of mapping but also by improving the tagging for such amenities. The project seeks the opinion of the community about the tagging of “seasonal” in conjunction with the combination of amenity=drinking_water or amenity=fountain and drinking_water=yes.
  • The European Water Project has drafted a proposal for the tagging of free_water=yes/no/customers and the specification free_water:container= and started the Request For Comments period.
  • The mapping of the eastern boundary of the Río de la Plata, i.e. defining where the river ends and the ocean begins, was the subject of an edit war.
  • Mapillary have made their map features available as a data layer in iD Editor. The layer contains point data which was extracted from imagery uploaded to Mapillary.


  • OpenStreetMap Ireland are pleased with progress of mapping buildings in Kilkenny. Nearly 70% of the task manager squares have been mapped. Other Irish counties are also showing good progress.
  • Tobias Knerr posted a reminder about the upcoming Google Summer of Code 2020 and asks the community to add project ideas to the OSM Wiki page.
  • Allan Mustard, one of the newly elected OSMF board members, has drafted a SWOT analysis and asks the community to add their perspective on the page in the OSM Wiki.
  • n76 blogged about the problems he faced when he tried to produce a map of trekking destinations in Nepal. The name tags in Nepal seem to break with OSM name conventions, specifically by using romanised/transliterated names in the main name= tags rather than local names.
  • OSM-UK have been using Loomio for collaborative work, but the removal of the free tier led to discussion as to what platform to use in the future. Harry Wood pointed to the existing United Kingdom sub-forum. The issue has been resolved temporarily for 2020 by continuing to use Loomio.
  • Samuel Darkwah Manu (Sammyhawkrad), a scholar from Ghana, shares his experience of participating in the State of the Map Africa 2019 and Understanding Risk – West and Central Africa conferences in Ivory Coast in a diary post.


  • Branko Kokanovic wrote about plans to import local boundaries (admin_level=9) in Serbia and tag these with ref:sr:maticni_broj=, a tag pointing to reference numbers similar to the UK ons_code= or the French ref_insee=. Another interesting news item is the availability of an open data portal provided by the Републички геодетски завод, the geodetic authority in Serbia.
  • CJ Malone announced his intention to update bus stop names on the Isle of Wight. He plans to use an open data set from local bus operator Southern Vectis.
  • An import of Swedish settlement names from Lantmäteriets GSD-Terrängkartan is currently being discussed (sv) (automatic translation) on the local mailing list. The project and its current progress are documented on the comprehensive page in the OSM Wiki.


  • Applications for scholarships for the upcoming State of the Map 2020, to be held in Cape Town in July 2020, can be submitted until 15 February 2020.

Humanitarian OSM

  • Harry Wood reminded us of the hundreds of mappers who spontaneously came together after the Haiti earthquake to rapidly produce a map for aid agencies. In response, Simon Poole observed that today’s HOT is not the same HOT that responded to the Haiti earthquake in 2010. Mikel Maron asks us to think about how we can help those who are still suffering in Haiti. He points out that, in some ways, HOT has benefited more than Haiti from the quake response.


  • [1] Andrei Kashcha announced a website which allows you to create, customise and export a map with all roads of a city and gave a brief introduction in a short video. He adds on Twitter that the data is licensed under ODbL and the source code is provided under a MIT license.


  • Thomas Gratier pointed to a publication of the Elysée Palace (seat of the French President). The Elysée Palace advertised (automatic translation) the exhibition “Fabriqué en France” and used an OSM map to show the origin of the products.


  • MapTiler, a company offering mapping products and services based on OSM data, achieved something that others have been working on for years: Within one day the company fixed the missing attribution.


  • Heidelberg University’s GIScience Research Group reports that NASA used the University’s OpenRouteService’s navigation service in a study of disaster response times.


  • Michal Migurski, following up on Andy Allan’s suggestion, had an in-depth look at testing the OSM Website Chef recipes with continuous integration tools. He wrote up his experiences as a diary post.
  • A forum user asked if it is possible, using OSRM, to create bicycle routes which avoid crossing busy roads. It turns out that this is missing functionality in OSRM. The discussion raises other use cases and possible ways to do this type of routing with existing software.


  • The OSM editor iD has been updated to version 2.17.1. The editor no longer supports Node 8 and requires at least Node 10 if you want to build the editor yourself. Other changes include the new ability to reorder fields with multiple values by drag-and-drop, usability improvements and many more.
  • OSMnx, a Python package to download, model, project, visualise, and analyse street networks with OSM data, has been upgraded to 0.11.3.

Did you know …

  • … MapRoulette is calling on mappers to nominate their favourite challenges so that they appear at the top of the Challenge list?
  • … the app Cartas Militares (pt), an all-terrain navigation app with military cartography? The app was created by the Geospatial Information Army Center (CIGeoE) of Portugal and it is available for Android and iOS devices.
  • … Bike Ottawa’s guide to tagging cycling infrastructure in OSM?

Other “geo” things

  • The United Kingdom has a bewildering complexity of administrative geographies. A new set of briefing papers from the Library of the House of Commons make comparisons between various geographies, showing how they overlap or have coterminous boundary segments. A deeper dive behind the history of these different geographies is also available.
  • Haikus created using OpenStreetMap data (as we reported earlier) are now also available (es) in Spanish.
  • The newspaper Heilbronner Stimme reports (de) (automatic translation) that a new pond created by a beaver dam near Adelshofen now appears on Google Maps (it also appears on OSM).
  • The Guardian features as one of their long reads an in-depth article about Strava.
  • The Green Car Congress blog reported on a recent paper which shows that newly developed street network patterns are reinforcing a trend towards urban sprawl. The open-access research, published in the journal PNAS, relied on OpenStreetMap and satellite data. The work was carried out by researchers from McGill University (Canada) and the University of California Santa Cruz.
  • Huawei have signed a deal with TomTom for maps and map services on their phones. New maps are needed because Huawei are no longer able to use Google Maps.
  • Business Insider profiled What3Words in their series on startups. With over 100 employees and major customers such as newly signed Mercedes, the firm is “working towards profitability”. It’s not clear precisely what this means as the filed accounts for 2018 showed losses of £11 million on a turnover of about £250,000.
  • This XKCD comic makes fun of the Mercator map projection by replacing every continent and island with South America.

Upcoming Events

IvreaIncontro mensile2020-01-25italy
RomeIncontro mensile Roma2020-01-27italy
PragueMissing Maps Mapathon Praha2020-01-28czech republic
ZurichMissing Maps Mapathon Zürich2020-01-29switzerland
DüsseldorfDüsseldorfer OSM-Stammtisch2020-01-29germany
HanoverOpenStreetMap Sprechstunde2020-01-29germany
BudapestBudapest gathering2020-02-03hungary
BerlinOSM-Verkehrswende #82020-02-04germany
LondonMissing Maps London2020-02-04united kingdom
StuttgartStuttgarter Stammtisch2020-02-05germany
RennesRéunion mensuelle2020-02-10france
GrenobleRencontre mensuelle2020-02-10france
TaipeiOSM x Wikidata #132020-02-10taiwan
TorontoToronto Mappy Hour2020-02-10canada
LyonRencontre mensuelle pour tous2020-02-11france
LondonMove 2020 (featuring OSMUK)2020-02-11-2020-02-12united kingdom
Zurich114. OSM Meetup Zurich2020-02-11switzerland
MunichMünchner Stammtisch2020-02-12germany
NantesRencontre mensuelle2020-02-13france
Berlin140. Berlin-Brandenburg Stammtisch2020-02-14germany
TurinFOSS4G-it/OSMit 20202020-02-18-2020-02-22italy
RigaState of the Map Baltics2020-03-06latvia
ChemnitzChemnitzer Linux-Tage2020-03-14-2020-03-15germany
ValceaEuYoutH OSM Meeting2020-04-27-2020-05-01romania
GuardaEuYoutH OSM Meeting2020-06-24-2020-06-28spain
Cape TownState of the Map 20202020-07-03-2020-07-05south africa

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This weeklyOSM was produced by NunoMASAzevedo, Polyglot, Rogehm, SK53, SunCobalt, TheSwavu, YoViajo, derFred.