[OSM-talk] Response to A critique of OpenStreetMap
richard at systemed.net
Thu Oct 14 18:47:21 BST 2010
Mike N. wrote:
> And along those lines, based on the constructive criticism, the default
> map shown on the main OSM page should be a "pretty map", using
> tiles from Mapquest, while mappers that have a need to view more
> details can select one of the existing map styles.
41latitude is a really interesting blog and I like it, including this latest
post. I think you could largely sum up his criticisms in two broad headings:
1. US OSM contributors need to get their shit together
2. European maps don't look like American ones
For 1 - seriously, you do. In the UK we don't have some roads tagged "A3400"
and others tagged "A-3400" and others tagged "CNSE" (Chipping Norton
Stratford Expressway, _obviously_): they're all tagged a la "A3400". Our
roads are coherently classified according to the UK highway system, even
though it might seem counterintuitive (we tag non-primary A roads as
"highway=primary" - well, so what). As a result our map looks lovely. If you
get your shit together than your map will look lovely too.
For 2 - right. That's why you're saying "use MapQuest tiles". But over here
we're used to the Ordnance Survey and its subtle use of colouring, and so
OSM looks just right and Google et al look spartan. It's no coincidence that
when Mary Spence of the British Cartographic Society was all over the
newspapers criticising Internet cartography, she qualified it with "but
OpenStreetMap looks lovely".
Now the way that Google and friends solve this is by having country-specific
rendering rules. They're all within a certain framework, of course, but it
means that Google US has shields and orange interstates, while Google UK has
boxes and blue motorways.
We really ought to do this. But AIUI there will need to be some
Mapnik/osm2pgsql patches before it can happen. svn is that way ----> :)
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