[OSM-talk] Mapping with no GPS data

Dan Karran dan at karran.net
Wed Mar 22 15:44:08 GMT 2006

Hi everyone,

I'm interested in a number of cities around the world that don't
currently have any GPS track data or users drawing roads in those
areas, but they do have easily discernable road patterns on the
Landsat imagery (for the larger roads at least).

I know the imagery has a relatively poor resolution and isn't
accurately rectified in some areas; and it isn't really suitable for
discerning smaller roads and typical inner city streets.

However, if main roads can be traced based on the Landsat imagery,
what are peoples opinions on using that as a starting point for the
creation of OSM data and allowing people to update that initial
attempt as and when real GPS data is uploaded into the system? Where
there are uncertanties about whether a structure is a road or not, it
could simply not be included in the initial dataset.

For an example of an area where main roads are relatively clear, see Kiev:

My feeling is that when people come to OSM and they see that there is
already some information for where they are, they'll be much more
inclined to join in with the project and help fix bits that don't look
right, etc. On the other hand, it's creating geodata based on a
not-so-accurate dataset. Perhaps it should all be tagged initially as
"source=landsat" or something?

Kind regards,

Dan Karran
dan at karran.net

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