[OSM-talk] Fwd: [Geowanking] osm

Tom Carden tom at tom-carden.co.uk
Fri Apr 14 09:27:55 BST 2006


Kind words from Anselm.

Tom.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Anselm Hook <anselm at hook.org>
Date: Apr 13, 2006 5:21 PM
Subject: [Geowanking] osm
To: geowanking at lists.burri.to



I know this is preaching to the choir but I just wanted to mention how
increasingly impressed I am with the open street maps project.  Check out
just how amazingly gorgeous this example is - and think about what it
means to have collected and liberated all this data:

  http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/index.php/Sutton_Coldfield

So many things we do are so fleeting and ephemeral; often the challenge is
to find something of durable persistence; something that can be an anchor
for other projects, and an anchor to guide what we choose to do in our
lives.  OSM is clearly the first oscillation of the seismograph; if I were
NavTek I'd start to diversify right now.  It is one of those few durable
things that will be an anchor for future work by many other people.

In some ways this project is more vital than wikipedia because it connects
to our physicality in a much more intimate way.  It is not about the
abstract space but about connecting the web back to real space.  As I've
ranted about before... what we think of as government and mass media might
even becomes obsolete because we'll be able to directly see each other and
signal to each other without the need for intermediaries that we do not
control and that have separate agendas.  The role of government
increasingly may become like that of any deposed power structure - such as
say the monarchy; relegated to representing intangibles such as tradition
and propriety.

By way of an actual example; one can imagine in the near future driving
down a street, right past the big superstore with the neon lights, into a
suburban neighbourhood, stopping at a new friends house, and borrowing
their ladder... instead of having bought one.  It is a simple example but
by extension whole classes of behavior shift and this can mean cultural,
social economic and political change.  The need for dollars, our sense of
community, the power of advertising etcetera...  little shifts accumulate
and create a self induced criticality that leads our civilization in new
directions. It might even mean what we think of as national boundaries
start to dissolve; when we have a clear awareness of how much we are
intertwined...

Good work guys,

 - a


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