[Talk-GB] Import UK postcode data?

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Fri Oct 4 19:28:48 UTC 2019


On 10/4/19 20:51, Mark Goodge wrote:
> The reality is that people expect postcodes to be a functional search term on online mapping, at least in the UK,

You *are* ware that UK post codes are fully findable on the OSM website
and any site that runs the Nominatim geocoder? It must have been
mentioned somewhere in this thread. This means that our web site and
anything that uses Nominatim for geocoding already knows UK post codes
without importing them to OSM.

This discussion, therefore, is not about improving the OSM web site or
indeed most web sites that use OSM ("functional search term on online
mapping"), but only (quoting Richard) "Osmand and maps.me and Fred's
routing app and Jo's OSM-based game" insofar as these don't use
Nominatim or directly ingest the available open data.

> With an automated import, OSM can be
> as up to date as the latest release of CPO/ONSPD. And that's a positive
> selling point for our data.

The notion that automated imports could set OSM apart from the
competition flies in the face of what many of us believe to be OSM's
unique value proposition. We don't usually brand ourselves as "the
database with the better imports" and we're unlikely to ever be a match
to the giants on the field of engineering.

(Maybe you're right and Google have a glitch somehow that makes them
ingest new data with a delay but that sounds like an engineering problem
that can and will be fixed.)

Richard makes a good point (that if anything, a manual process that
allows our human editors with local knowledge - who are what really sets
us apart - to verify and improve the data would be preferable) but also
a questionable one (in suggesting that there are 195 countries in the
world having some form of post codes that is also available as open data
- the number is probably one-digit).

I would like to applaud Ken for his roll-up-sleeves approach. It
shouldn't be too hard to find one house for each of the post codes in
your local area and add the post code to that, which will ultimately
make every post code findable without actually having to add something
as synthetic as a centroid.


Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"

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