[Tagging] R: Are we mapping ground on OSM?

Michael Montani michael.montani at un.org
Mon Jul 6 06:20:08 UTC 2020


> there is natural=bare_rock for some cases, generally I would go with landcover tags. Knowing the composition of the material would be interesting to understand what to expect when it is wet.

natural=bare_rock<https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:natural%3Dbare_rock> is about bedrock, not related at all with ground. landcover=*<https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Proposed_features/landcover> would fit for this purpose, but it is a proposal as well and the wikipage has been updated since long time. Furthermore I believe landcover=* would be a duplication of already existing tags (eg. natural=wood and landcover=trees).

> We have established and usually quite consistently used tags for a number of fairly specific natural or semi-natural non-vegetated surfaces - natural=bare_rock, natural=scree, natural=shingle, natural=sand and natural=mud and more specifically in coastal environments natural=beach, natural=shoal, natural=reef and natural=wetland + wetland=tidalflat.  It would therefore be rather counterproductive to introduce a new umbrella tag engrossing those like natural=bare_ground.

It seems to me that up to now there is a duality of tagging in OSM for landcover: basically there are some tags that refer to 'what's on the imagery' (eg. natural=sand, natural=rock ...) and others which focus on the geological meaning of the feature (natural=shingle, natural=scree ...). By the way it seems to me very strange that there is nothing there for a straightforward feature as ground: compacted soil with very few or no vegetation, which can be of mineral or organic nature. This, as I told you, would be super useful for off-road navigation (to know if your car/motorbike/tank will get stuck into the mud).

I agree by the way that dried lakes are mostly mapped with natural=wetland + intermittent=yes, which makes sense and again refers to the role that natural feature is playing in the environment. But a tag on ground will possibly cover all the other cases, as I find it's a huge gap in landcover tagging.

>The local, regional, or global Copernicus time series datasets are specifically meant to overcome this. https://land.copernicus.eu/global/products/
"The Water Bodies product detects the areas covered by inland water along the year providing the maximum and the minimum extent of the water surface as well as the seasonal dynamics. The area of water bodies is identified as an Essential Climate Variable (ECV) by the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS)."
The global ones are built of higher resolution datasets with variable accessibility. Like the JRC’s Global Surface Water (MWE-GSW) Dataset at  https://global-surface-water.appspot.com/map ... "...location and temporal distribution of water surfaces at the global scale over the past 3.6 decades, and provides statistics on their extent and change ..."

Open global coverage dataset can definetely help to map landcover and many ones are out there. The discussion is not about seasonality of lakes but generally on ground.

To me, a tag proposal natural=ground, ground:type=organic/mineral with the further possibility to specify soil type seems reasonable.

Thanks,

--
Michael Montani
GIS Consultant, Client Solutions Delivery Section
Service for Geospatial Information and Telecommunications Technologies
United Nations Global Service Centre
United Nations Department of Operational Support

Brindisi | Phone: +39 0831 056985 | Mobile: +39 3297193455 | Intermission: 158 6985
E-mail: michael.montani at un.org<mailto:mail at un.org> | www.ungsc.org<http://www.ungsc.org>

[cid:aecd50ec-b315-4265-bf62-424fec50adeb]
________________________________
Da: Michael Patrick <geodesy99 at gmail.com>
Inviato: domenica 5 luglio 2020 22:01
A: tagging at openstreetmap.org <tagging at openstreetmap.org>
Oggetto: Re: [Tagging] Are we mapping ground on OSM?


> Generally mapping bare ground beyond the specific established tags mentioned earlier is often hard without local knowledge.  Imagery taken during dry season will often read like bare ground while there is often fairly extensive plant growth (like natural=grassland) that dries up and looks indistinguishable from bare ground even on high resolution imagery.

The local, regional, or global Copernicus time series datasets are specifically meant to overcome this. https://land.copernicus.eu/global/products/

"The Water Bodies product detects the areas covered by inland water along the year providing the maximum and the minimum extent of the water surface as well as the seasonal dynamics. The area of water bodies is identified as an Essential Climate Variable (ECV) by the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS)."

The global ones are built of higher resolution datasets with variable accessibility. Like the JRC’s Global Surface Water (MWE-GSW) Dataset at  https://global-surface-water.appspot.com/map ... "...location and temporal distribution of water surfaces at the global scale over the past 3.6 decades, and provides statistics on their extent and change ..."

I did a cursory look-see at several places in the Western U.S. Basin and Range region using only the ROI preview capability in the portal , especially Sevier Lake in Utah ( most of these 'lakes' tend to be of a single type, though ) . In combination with other Copernicus and NASA datasets one can get a fair idea what's going on.

Your mileage may vary.

Michael Patrick


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