[Talk-us] tiff, dwg and nad83

Randal Hale rjhale at northrivergeographic.com
Sun Apr 15 20:53:11 BST 2012

So I missed the whole exchange - so I read what little I see below and 
here are my thoughts.....

I don't think it's too GIS geeky - it's too OSM geeky.  There are too 
many ways to get to a common goal - adding data. You can import, GPS, 
walk around, etc etc.

There almost needs to be a list serve or a forum for new people - 
somewhere you can walk people through editing woes and problems. I agree 
- this list does get too bogged down in details.

Don't take the following as a complaint -  but is someone says "So lets 
say that I ask for a sample GeoTIFF, which I assume is just a big 
graphic file similar to any other TIFF file (or jpg or whatever)" an 
answer of "For the first one you install gdal with python bindings, run 
gdal2tiles" (and it's a Excellent  answer and I'm going to try it myself 
on a geotiff I have here) but it's going to be too confusing for someone 
new especially someone in the potlatch arena or a new user just getting 

Don't assume a technical question needs a technical answer. Start Simple 
- build from there.


Randal Hale, GISP
North River Geographic Systems, Inc
423.653.3611 rjhale at northrivergeographic.com

On 4/15/2012 2:37 PM, Charlotte Wolter wrote:
> The exchange between Frank Cox and others about importing data is a 
> perfect example of an ongoing problem with this list: Many of the 
> discussions and "answers" are simply too GIS geeky for the vast 
> majority of us.
> Frank asked for a simple "do x then do y" kind of explanation. Several 
> members replied, but no one but Paul Norman tried to give him that 
> kind of answer. Unfortunately, Paul's answer contained a lot of GIS 
> technical language. Obviously, he's very knowlegeable, but he didn't 
> put the explanation at a level where Frank and the rest ofus could 
> understand it.
> That's why reading the list often is frustrating. There's a lot of 
> talk about technical issues and minutiae, but little guidance for 
> those of us who just want to map using Potlatch 2, which is most of 
> us. (By the way, what is a "network," and where is it in Potlatch 
> coding?) Also, sometimes there are snippy disputes about issues that 
> seem obscure, which makes the list occasionally unpleasant to read. 
> Again, for those of us who just want to map, this isn't helpful.
> What can be done to make Talk-US more useful for the average mapper?
> Charlotte
> At 04:59 PM 4/14/2012, you wrote:
>> > From: Frank Cox [mailto:theatre at melvilletheatre.com]
>> > Subject: Re: [Imports] tiff, dwg and nad83
>> >
>> > On Sat, 14 Apr 2012 15:34:49 -0700
>> > Paul Norman wrote:
>> >
>> > > What I would suggest is to start with the GeoTiffs and go from there.
>> >
>> > All righty, now we're getting somewhere.
>> >
>> > So lets say that I ask for a sample GeoTIFF, which I assume is just a
>> > big graphic file similar to any other TIFF file (or jpg or whatever).
>> > The engineering department has these things (we assume), so he gives me
>> > a copy of one of them.
>> >
>> > I carry this thing home on my trusty flash drive (or whatever), plug it
>> > into my computer, and now I have a graphic file on my computer that I
>> > didn't have before.
>> >
>> > What now?
>> Depending on how big it is, you can either tile it with gdal2tiles[1] or
>> serve it with mapserver[2].
>> For the first one you install gdal with python bindings, run 
>> gdal2tiles on
>> the geotiff, use a script (http://paste.ubuntu.com/928312/) to fix some
>> names, and serve that with apache. JOSM or Potlatch can then use it as a
>> background layer.
>> For the second one you install gdal and mapserver and tell it to 
>> serve the
>> geotiff and then you can add it as a background layer with JOSM or 
>> Potlatch.
>> I had a look at your town and given that it's a very small town and 
>> the bing
>> imagery is actually quite good, I don't know that it's worth doing 
>> any sort
>> of import. If you wanted street names you could get them from 
>> CanVec[3]. Of
>> course collecting street names also gives you a chance to tag businesses,
>> amenities, etc.
>> [1] http://gdal.org/
>> [2] http://mapserver.org/
>> [3] http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/CanVec
>> _______________________________________________
>> Imports mailing list
>> Imports at openstreetmap.org
>> http://lists.openstreetmap.org/listinfo/imports
> Charlotte Wolter
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