[Talk-us] suburban superblocks that nobody wants to survey

Martijn van Exel m at rtijn.org
Thu Mar 15 15:35:07 GMT 2012


On Thu, Mar 15, 2012 at 7:52 AM, Hillsman, Edward <hillsman at cutr.usf.edu>wrote:

> In the interest of figuring out how to attract more people to participate
> in OSM, I'd like to see some more discussion of this. Is it generally true
> that people who work on OSM don't like to map subdivisions? And, if so,
> why? Because these are home to so many people in the US, it raises a
> question about the viability of strategies that suggest people start in OSM
> by mapping their own neighborhoods.

It would be straightforward enough to do some analysis on this, and I
concur that it would be interesting, if only there was some geographical
demarcation file of these types of neighborhoods. Would it be possible to
define that?

Apart from that, I can see why these areas seem to have low priority. I am
going to make a lot of assumptions here, because that's all I can do
without having really investigated.
Subdivisions make for boring mapping. It is repetitive and there seems to
be no end to them. OSM contributors invest their free time in the project
and want to get something out of it: fun, a sense of accomplishment. So
they spend their time on fun mapping projects, not boring ones. Considering
that the US is horribly understaffed with contributors, subdivisions are
much less likely to be tended to, unless one of those sparse mappers has
some personal incentive.

I see two ways to break this: 1) attract more mappers. 2) make boring
projects fun. I see both tasks as core to growing OpenStreetMap in the US,
and they are related.

martijn van exel
geospatial omnivore
1109 1st ave #2
salt lake city, ut 84103
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