[OSM-talk] Actually using OpenStreetMap - how to get vector data

Andy Robinson (blackadder-lists) ajrlists at googlemail.com
Mon Jul 28 23:46:21 BST 2008

Igor Brejc wrote:
>Sent: 28 July 2008 7:27 PM
>To: Simone Cortesi
>Cc: talk at openstreetmap.org
>Subject: Re: [OSM-talk] Actually using OpenStreetMap - how to get vector
>Simone Cortesi wrote:
>> On Mon, Jul 28, 2008 at 7:07 PM, Igor Brejc <igor.brejc at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> The problem is fetching the data - the only viable option I see is using
>>> OSMXAPI, but its server is overwhelmed and will limit the download size
>>> in the future (from what I read on this list). Using planet dumps seems
>>> to me a bit too unfriendly from the end-user perspective - they would
>>> have to download quite a large quantity of data.
>> still you can download data from some planet's country extract (italy
>> is 22mb at the moment).
>> find them on Geofabrik, cloudmade, etc...
>> -S
>Yes, that's an option - but still there are problems with this approach:
>- you don't know in advance the area covered by these extracts (some of
>- some countries are not covered (mine, for example) by some extracts
>- your software depends on the good will of people maintaining these
>extracts - people move on or they loose interest
>- some extracts are maintained on a regular basis, some are not
>Basically what I'm trying to say is that this is not a systematic
>approach. It would be more useful if these extracts were not
>country-based but tile-based instead (maybe this already exists, forgive
>my ignorance?)

I agree we certainly need to open up more methods of getting the data out of
OSM rather than relying upon a third party. Ultimately we will need services
like osmxapi and tile based data chunks to be part of OSM itself and
hopefully some of the ideas to get working demonstrations of these ideas off
the drawing board will make their way into OSM itself in the future. It's an
area I'm personally keen to encourage. The more methods and formats that we
can offer our data to users will ultimately set us apart from all the
alternative API's out there, whether free or commercial. 



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