[Talk-GB] Map styles and rendering various things (was: Re: driveway-becomes-track)

Andy Townsend ajt1047 at gmail.com
Sat Dec 12 22:04:08 UTC 2020

On 12/12/2020 21:11, Martin Wynne wrote:
> On 12/12/2020 17:37, Andy Townsend wrote:
>> That allows maps such as 
>> https://map.atownsend.org.uk/maps/map/map.html#zoom=16&lat=52.28208&lon=-2.42987 
>> to display it as a public bridleway (in blue)
> Hi Andy,
> That's a great map! It seems you have already done what I would be 
> interested in doing - to provide a better map for walkers and others 
> showing footpaths, stiles and gates, etc. much more prominently.
> What I'm wondering is how the typical recreational country walker 
> would find that map, or get it on their mobile phone app in place of 
> the awful Google maps? It's a lot of work to create if no-one ever 
> uses it?

Well I use it :)

More seriously, it was designed more a s proof of concept map style than 
anything else - an answer to some people saying "it is not possible to 
do X in a map style".  If you leave aside the whole "presenting 
advertising to the viewer" and "data collection from the user" parts of 
Google Maps there are still things that it does that people would want 
"a map" to do, not least:

  * being able to search for things
  * being able to get directions to things via various modes of transport
  * being able to work offline (a little bit, in the case of Google Maps)

There are fully-fledged offline map apps out there that use OSM data - 
OsmAnd and MAPS.ME are a couple that spring to mind.  See also 
.  OsmAnd in particular offers a huge number of map styles (and can be 
customised too, although I wouldn't describe the process as "easy").

> One thing I would ask for is more prominent rendering of benches. They 
> appear only at maximum zoom on the OSM standard map, and only as a 
> very small symbol. I don't suppose younger OSM mappers roam the 
> countryside looking for somewhere to sit and eat their lunch, but at 
> 72 years of age I do (cheese & pickle sandwich and a hard-boiled egg, 
> since you ask)!

At the risk of stating the obvious you can find things like this using 
Overpass as a front-end for the main OSM site - for example, 
https://overpass-turbo.eu/s/118H will find you benches in a certain area.

shows benches a couple of zoom levels lower than the standard map, but 
the icon is still (deliberately) fairly small.

> Something I feel strongly about, and would be a prime motivation for 
> doing something about myself, is to map and provide rendering for the 
> area:highway tag:
>  https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Key:area:highway

You want something like 
https://osmapa.pl/#lat=52.24738&lon=20.98893&z=19&m=os for that...

If you look at the underlying data needed to support that, it's pretty 
complex though.

> Country walkers often need to include a stretch of public road in a 
> planned walk, and it is very difficult to discover whether a road will 
> be safe to walk along. Sometimes there are wide verges, but sometimes 
> high banks or close hedges with nowhere to leap to out of the way of 
> approaching traffic. It's necessary to look on Google Streetview 
> before setting out, but not all country roads are covered. At present 
> even apps which do render it (I believe OsmAnd) can't do much because 
> it is not commonly mapped between the hedgerows along country roads. 
> Legally the entire area between the property boundaries on each side 
> is the public highway.

shows verges (and "sidewalks" i.e. pavements)



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