[Talk-us] Take another look at notes!

Alex Barth alex at mapbox.com
Fri May 31 18:57:35 UTC 2013

> Craigslist had added a feature to their OSM powered maps to submit map
problems back to OSM

Have you found that feature actually on craigslist?

On Thu, May 30, 2013 at 11:25 PM, Toby Murray <toby.murray at gmail.com> wrote:

> As I'm sure a lot of you are aware, osm.org has a new "notes" [1] feature
> (new as of a month ago) that allows anonymous users to submit random
> comments about our maps.
> Some of them will of course be unhelpful or silly but there have been many
> useful ones submitted since the feature went live. We actually have a bot
> in the #osm-us IRC channel that announces whenever a new note is posted
> anywhere in the US.
> Recently I noticed a pattern on some of the notes and guessed (correctly
> as it turns out) that Craigslist had added a feature to their OSM powered
> maps to submit map problems back to OSM. At first things were a little
> chaotic and we were getting notes about Craigslist page layout problems and
> such. But they have tweaked some things and the reports coming in now have
> a better signal-to-noise ratio. There does still seem to be a fairly common
> problem of people reporting geocoding related problems that don't affect
> OSM data. These usually say something about a city name being displayed
> incorrectly when osm.org either has the correct city name or there isn't
> a city label nearby. Not quite sure what is happening there.
> You can tell a Craigslist note by the fact that they start with the text
> "bounds:" followed by a pair of coordinates. This indicates the map view
> that the user was looking at when the note was submitted. As of a few hours
> ago they are also adding a URL that will open the map with a box on it to
> graphically display this bounds information. This is just useful to see if
> they were zoomed in really close or looking at a whole region. I think this
> might be the first example of a bug sumitted after this was added:
> http://www.openstreetmap.org/?note=5245
> But Craigslist isn't the only source of new notes and there are a lot of
> them waiting for resolution. So please, if you haven't taken a look
> recently, check the "Notes" box on the layer chooser on osm.org and see
> if there is anything near you that needs some attention. They should start
> showing up at zoom level 8 or 9, depending on the size of your browser
> window (the query is limited by geographic area, not by zoom level) Even if
> the note itself isn't entirely clear on what is wrong, a quick look at the
> area in an editor may well point out missing roads or crazy TIGER problems
> that might be easy to fix.
> If stats are your thing, Pascal Neis has made some notes statistics that
> are updated every hour: http://resultmaps.neis-one.org/osm-notes
> Keep in mind that not all notes are submitted by anonymous users and if
> you comment on a note that was submitted by an OSM user, they will be
> notified of your response. This allows for some discussion of the issue if
> need be.
> [1] http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Notes
> Toby
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