[HOT] Mapping buildings something to think about

majka majka.zem+talk at gmail.com
Tue Apr 11 11:25:02 UTC 2017

I have to admit, I couldn't use iD for "bulk" mapping for the life of me. I
find it suitable for the one-off mapping / for doing corrections only. But
some mappers do and do well with this. You can find haphazardly mapped
buildings and untagged ways and nodes using JOSM for mapping as well, just
not as often.
A better "building tool" for iD would help some but not for all of it.

The fundamental problem is that some mappers fail to understand mapping
isn't a race. Somehow, the number of edits / added buildings /
changes became more important than precision. We are partly promoting this
by looking at the number of edits to declare a mapper as experienced.

I try to explain to the mappers that sometimes the work is done so badly
that it would be better to do only one tenth of it but to do so correctly.
As English is my third or fourth language, I struggle with the correct way
to explain this, to get the right mix of being diplomatic and to get
through - above all when I am shouting and swearing in my head at the
person who has done the mapping.

If I could wish for one thing only to start every new mapper with, it would
be this: Exact and precise mapping is more important than anything else. Do
not map for quantity but for quality. And if unsure about tagging, look for
help. In HOT tasks, read what is expected from you and do exactly so.

Here comes the importance of earliest possible validation - to stop the bad
habit from forming. New mappers (and old ones as well) would still make
mistakes but we shouldn't ignore the systematic ones just because it is a
new mapper and we don't want to be too hard on them.

Everything else comes with experience, the speed of work as well. It is not
a problem of HOT alone - locally, a new mapper without any experience has
uploaded more than 100 changesets within the first 24 hours after his
registration. Every single one of it has to be corrected somehow. Leave it
long enough uncorrected and the map quality will degrade with tons of
useless data obscuring the correct ones.

We should somehow try to promote the idea that mapping isn't a speed race.
There are not that many tasks really time critical and even then the real
usefulness of tasks mapped just for speed is somewhat suspect. I would say,
as there are more mappers available than validators, I cannot see any
reason for "wasting" validator's time on remapping tasks. And remapping is
what happens often when validation isn't done as soon as possible and
fundamental mistakes are not caught early. I am often commenting on half
finished tasks for this reason as well - no reason to leave the problems
untouched until validation.

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