[Talk-us] Facts about the world

Greg Morgan dr.kludge.gm at gmail.com
Sat Apr 4 05:04:15 UTC 2015


On Fri, Apr 3, 2015 at 2:32 PM, Eleanor Tutt <eleanor.tutt at gmail.com> wrote:

> Side note relevant to this conversation: I would love to hear from mappers
> in the US who are collecting data "on the ground" - either by themselves or
> by organizing mapathons and building community.  I can think of quite a few
> examples, but I'm interested in hearing more about how and why people
> contribute to the map.  I am awful at documenting and sharing my own work
> (I'm trying to get better), and I imagine there are others like me who are
> mapping US towns & not talking about it yet.
>
> You can write me at eleanor at openstreetmap.us.  :)
>
> Eleanor,

This is a great question.
* I use a combination of approaches.   In my case, TIGER isn't all the that
bad.  Yes, I have done my share of TIGER fix-up.  I enjoy that the names
are already on the way.  I just needed to straighten the roads.
* I have used techniques like paper/pin and walking papers.  The thing that
I did not like about the paper method was how conspicuous the paper made me.
* Pictures have been a great tool also.  The pictures provide a great
perspective during a mapping session.  However, the picture taking can make
you conspicuous.
* My favorite application is keypad mapper2 and not version 3.  The tool
provides a GPS trace and .osm file.  Sure I pick up a few addresses but I
use the letters to mean something else.  "h" might be hydrant during one
walk.  "e" might be one of those blue emergency lights.  Search and replace
in JOSM lets me turn those addr:housenumber=* tags into other features.  In
some cases, I don't even get the data into OSM.  It is more important for
me to get out and walk.  What's great about keypad mapper2 is that I can
walk the same area over and over again and see something new--it reduces
the boredom. Keypad mapper2 is not over engineered.  I can keep the walking
pace up with this app verses waiting for several screens to load before I
have the right tag as I have experienced with other phone based apps.
Social engineering keeps a low profile.  I can walk by a house and say,
"Isn't the weather great."  The person may be left with the idea, "Oh yet
another one of those that can't walk and text at the same time."  ;-)
* I tossed the pawn shop Garmin GPS.  The Garmin was great for a bunch of
important roads in OSM.  What I found is that GPS has accuracy issues.  I
expected both the cell phone and the GPS to be close when used together.
But they were not.
* I am so thankful for all the imports.  I find things that I did not know
about the world.  The import data makes me want to go out and explore the
world.  I found an excuse to explore one of these nodes two months ago. I
picked up one of those Duro bike stations.  However, I was really
interested in a GNIS point that was imported [1][2].  I did not know the
significance of all of the dams in the metro Phoenix before I started
mapping in OSM.  Most of the dam POIs are easy to understand.  This node
was a real puzzler.  They actually had to build AZ LOOP 202 over the dam.
The contrast between living in a forest watershed and desert watershed has
been outstanding.  All the dams and storm improvements manage a watershed
that has nothing to hold back the moisture. [3]

I am so thankful for all choices that we have after 10 years of OSM.

[1] http://www.openstreetmap.org/node/359276489/history
[2] http://www.openstreetmap.org/way/328678925
[3]
https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=894&dat=19950209&id=gScOAAAAIBAJ&sjid=un0DAAAAIBAJ&pg=1793,1166620&hl=en
It looks like the flood control district site is down right now.  There was
some more interesting information there.
There is an interesting story behind the dam.  The name does not mean what
a modern interpretation brings.

Regards,
Greg
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