[OSM-talk] map display www.openstreetmap.org
david at frankieandshadow.com
Mon Oct 13 19:29:51 BST 2008
On 13/10/2008 18:24, Frederik Ramm wrote:
>> Of course, sitting up you own slippy map is easier than setting up
>> Windows, almost anybody can do that. But a bunch of people each
>> settign up their own map that implements the feature they care most
>> about is not a very user friendly solution, either.
> This is something I constantly preach on talk-de: We aim to be the
> geodatabase to end all geodatabases. Not the web mapping platform to end
> all web mapping platforms.
> Everyone has different preferences, but it is just about conceivable
> that all of us together build a giant database with which everybody is
> more or less happy. - On the other hand, it would be absolutely
> impossible to create the web map that everybody likes.
> And we don't have to! We are NOT a web map. As soon as we're popular
> enough any many people have set up map displays of one kind or another,
> we just kill the www.openstreetmap.org map display and just do API. We
> don't need revenue, visits, user counters, advertising click-throughs on
> www.openstreetmap.org. As RichardF pointed out: Let us *encourage*
> people to make their own cool web map from our data instead of trying to
> impose one view onto all! This capability is one thing that sets us
> apart from the others.
We're not at that point yet though. And even if we were, it's much
easier to find openstreetmap than all its derivative projects.
I've always been a bit troubled by the inequity that is given to Mapnik
by the openstreetmap home page. In general people should be able to make
up their own mind between osmarender, cyclemap, mapnik and others. These
are examples of derivative projects. So is Potlatch for that matter. So
OTOH, the pictorial map gives the project a much more concrete feel. The
idea of abstract data is really hard for most people to grasp.
Perhaps, therefore, the home page should be more of an introduction to
the project with an index to applications using it. It needn't be as
bald as that in how it is presented, and the slippy maps can be
prominent. For people what it means is the pictorial map is one level
down, even though it may actually be hosted on another site. Or not.
This would allow a more obvious parity between applications, give us
more space to say what the project is about, give pointers to other
applications which don't have the privilege of sitting on the home page
at the moment or will arise in the future. It also means the projects
themselves can be individually controlled rather than everything having
to go through Tom. OSM's instance of Mapnik might "own" not just the
tiles, but the page in which they are showcased as well. Likewise
Potlatch, likewise Osmarender, likewise namefinder gazetteer. But we
provide a starting point to look at them.
So, how's that different in principle from the Wiki home page? Maybe it
isn't, except it can be more attractively presented, actively controlled
rather than being open to all comers to change, and is possibly more
consumer oriented (though would, of course, need to have links to
contributor projects as well).
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