[Talk-GB] Google maps added addresses!

Gregory Williams gregory at gregorywilliams.me.uk
Mon Dec 28 17:15:33 UTC 2020


Just following up on the StreetView hypothesis, I notice that there's a
house number showing up in a newly-built housing development that
hasn't had a StreetView pass made yet (or at least one doesn't show up
on the online imagery). The placement there is roughly correct,
suggesting some source other than StreetView for that.

Checking another fairly new development a few miles away, there aren't
any numbers showing up at all, despite having existed for longer. More
established housing nearby to that does have numbers showing, though I
can't say whether they're accurate (they do look to be sane, though).

So I do think that there's something to the hypthesis of at least some
of the data having been sourced from StreetView.

Gregory

On Mon, 2020-12-28 at 17:03 +0000, Gregory Williams wrote:
> At first though I thought that these may have been machine-read, too.
> I've taken a brief glance at the house numbering that they have near
> to
> me. Several of the numbers are completely wrong.
> 
> However, I've also spotted places where there are house numbers
> placed
> at a regular interval, but no houses actually exist there (nor ever
> did). The actual numbers listed reflect houses that are perhaps 100
> metres further along the road and on the other side. Further up the
> same road there's numbers at a different regular spacing. Those are
> situated roughly in the right area of the road, but spaced out
> perhaps
> 30% too much compared with the actual house spacing.
> 
> I'd hazard that these have perhaps come from some source where the
> extent of the house numbers for a span between junctions are known
> (e.g. perhaps the houses on the corners of the junctions), and
> linearly
> interpolated from that.
> 
> I also notice places where the houses are set back a bit further from
> the road centre-line, due to the nature of the junction there. The
> numbers for the houses have been projected onto the road's centre-
> line, 
> rather than on the buildings themselves. A few properties further
> along, where they're closer to the road, the numbers have been placed
> roughly near the properties instead of on the road centreline.
> 
> Gregory
> 
> On Mon, 2020-12-28 at 16:34 +0000, Jez Nicholson wrote:
> > Interesting....
> > 
> > My first guess is that house numbers are machine read from
> > StreetView
> > images.
> > 
> > The positioning of the numbers is slightly irratic. Some are on the
> > centre of houses, some near the front, some are outside. Maybe
> > indicating multiple sources.... Some houses have numbers twice.
> > 
> > On Mon, 28 Dec 2020, 16:24 Rob Nickerson, <
> > rob.j.nickerson at gmail.com>
> > wrote:
> > > Hi all,
> > > 
> > > I just spotted that Google Maps has added house numbers to their
> > > map of the UK. They are all over the place - does anyone
> > > recognise
> > > the source?
> > > 
> > > What can we do to improve coverage of addresses in OSM? I notice
> > > that we have some pretty good aerial imagery now. Should we see
> > > if
> > > we can get good building outline from an AI / machine learning
> > > approach? If the quality is good we can then use these to help
> > > add
> > > addresses. For example we can ask new mappers to add addresses
> > > using tools such as StreetComplete.
> > > 
> > > Any thoughts much appreciated. I have a feeling that if we can
> > > come
> > > up with a plan we may be able to get some help from several of
> > > the
> > > big tech companies now interested in the UK. It would be better
> > > if
> > > we were steering this rather than it happening to us.
> > > 
> > > Best wishes,
> > > Rob
> > > _______________________________________________
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> > > Talk-GB at openstreetmap.org
> > > https://lists.openstreetmap.org/listinfo/talk-gb
> > 
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