[Talk-GB] OS StreetView accuracy: caution!

Robert Scott lists at humanleg.org.uk
Fri Apr 9 18:40:24 BST 2010

On Thursday 08 April 2010, Phil Monger wrote:
> I'd echo that sentiment, and say this:
> Streetview is a product designed to show *streets. *Anything else is just
> detail to show these in context.
> It would be a huge mistake for anyone to trace topo details from StreetView
> into OSM, for these reasons and more!
> I do think though, that it is an excellent source of street and road
> information in areas that have not yet been traced ... as long as users
> don't get over zealous with it.

I'm not really sure about this whole attitude of "OS data is not perfect, so let's ignore the imperfect bits".

The reality is - for the majority of the data in, for example, StreetView, OSM's corresponding data is - nothing.

The huge majority of buildings in SV are just plain not there in OSM. Most rivers & streams in OSM around the country have, frankly, probably already been derived from an OOC OS source in the first place. Small placenames and farm names are generally not there, and again, have often previously come from OOC OS.

Hasn't one of OSM's (many) mantras been "doesn't matter if it's approximate: someone can always improve it later" or "rough is better than nothing"? Sure, some of the OS data is rough, but it is better than nothing, and quite good for a first pass. A lot of the features I myself put in over the years ( I don't have aerial imagery available for my area ) turn out to be much rougher than that in SV.

Again, I am not saying we should do a blanket countrywide import of anything, or even that we should decide what to merge until the OS is done releasing what it's going to release.


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