[Talk-us] (Second attempt) Potential data source: Adirondack Park Freshwater Wetlands

Elliott Plack elliott.plack at gmail.com
Sun Feb 28 23:52:59 UTC 2016

I would argue that importing land-use that is difficult or tedious to trace
would encourage local mapping for the following three reasons:

1. It shows others that an area of the map has received some attention.
2. It produces "gaps," i.e. places where there are no wetlands or water
thus leaving a gray "hole" on the map, thus a mapper might look there to
add something, such as a camp site or some unknown settlement.
3. It exposes inaccurate TIGER roads and tracks, as these typically are on
embankments through wetlands.

Importing landuse adds visual beauty to the map in places where it would
take hordes of volunteers to trace wetlands, and experts to determine the
wetland classification. I think this is a good idea.

I've fiddled around with NWI data and OSM and usually the result is great.
While I'd concede that landuses do change, so to do other features that are
imported often (buildings and such). A map is always a snapshot in time,
and for the most part land use within a protected area is not subject to
much in the way of change.

I too enjoy mapping things related to wilderness areas. I've done a lot of
work around my area mapping trails, park boundaries, and hydrology. I think
it makes for beautiful and useful maps.

Patapsco Valley Stake Park, Maryland:
Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge:
Martin National Wildlife Refuge:



On Sat, Feb 27, 2016 at 5:19 PM Frederik Ramm <frederik at remote.org> wrote:

> Kenny,
> On 02/27/2016 06:10 AM, Kevin Kenny wrote:
> > Given the
> > difficulties inherent in getting changes made by local mappers working
> > independently (the data are a bit difficult to verify in the field),
> > it's arguable that we should always use third-party sources to make
> > our maps and have it be Someone Else's Problem. That said, we
> > unquestionably do have hydrography in OSM, and it doesn't in fact
> > require a lot of updating - these natural features are quite stable,
> > particularly in a remote area such as I'm considering here.
> Is there not the danger though of the data rotting away in OSM,
> precisely for the reasons you outline - difficult to map in the first
> place, Adirondack being huge, and all this being a too big project for
> one or even a handful persons?
> IMHO you'd be scratching an itch for now and making it easier for people
> to make maps with OSM, but a few years down the line, people will again
> have to turn to the (regularly updated, presumably?) government data and
> say, just like you said, that OSM is "among the poorest of what I have
> available"?
> An import is great if it enables a community to go further, or forms the
> basis of solid work in the future. An import is great if it is one
> ingredient that makes OSM the best map of the region. But it sounds to
> me as if your proposed import is hardly more than a small time saver for
> people who want to make maps of the Adirondack - they *could* go to the
> original source at any time, and the likelihood of OSM hydrography being
> *better* than the official data is very low.
> In my view, a good import is a catalyst for future OSM data improvement.
> But you seem to say quite clearly that such is unlikely to happen with
> the data you are planning to import. Your main point is that it'll look
> better on the map, which for me isn't good enough.
> Can you point to areas where your import would encourage mappers,
> including yourself, to add more knowledge and surveyed data to OSM?
> Bye
> Frederik
> --
> Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"
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Elliott Plack
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