[OSM-dev] Simple app for "making contributions" (not to display maps)

Mikael Nordfeldth mmn at hethane.se
Wed Jun 29 15:04:35 UTC 2016

On 2016-06-29 14:04, Bjoern Hassler wrote:
> Is there interest in (or is anybody working on) creating an very
> simple-to-use app that allows "non-technical" users to contribute OSM
> information?

While I have to note that their web interface and processing backend is
proprietary (afaik), Mapillary is a great tool for contributing to OSM!
Especially to give "local knowledge" to remote mappers.

All the data available on their website (GPX tracks derived from app
recordings, the images themselves) are libre licensed and explicitly
there for using as a data source for the OSM database.

What their service does is, simplified:
   * users take photos along streets or highways
   * users upload photos to their service
   * photos are analyzed, connected and generates a 3d point cloud
   * connected photos can be "walked along" and used in JOSM, iD etc.

There is an app for Mapillary in iOS, Android and Windows mobile stores
(and a direct .apk download for Android on their website:
https://www.mapillary.com/ ) and it's extremely easy to get started
with. Register an account in-app and start taking pictures. When you're
at a wifi, choose to upload the images.

> E.g. a large red button for recording a trace with automatic
> upload (optimised for poorly internet connected environments, e.g. wait for
> wifi, upload in chunks etc; information submitted with GPS accuracy
> information).

Mapillary has upload resumption and things like image quality, photo
interval (timer or manual) can be set for smaller sized uploads.

Consequently you'll get street-level views along with a GPX trace.

Personally I combine it with OsmAnd or some other GPX recording program
so I track my whole bicycle ride and then bring out the camera to save
the "street view" when I am at a place with too many POIs/details to

Though as the zealot I am, I still feel somewhat uncomfortable using
their proprietary software but as mentioned, the resulting data is
available for OSM (or for replicating their service by downloading all
the images etc. if one were to write a libre software)

Mikael Nordfeldth
XMPP/mail: mmn at hethane.se
OpenPGP Fingerprint: AE68 9813 0B7C FCE3 B2FA  727B C7CE 635B B52E 9B31

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