What is the easiest way to contribute and map out these roads on OpenStreetMap? Before I've edited OpenStreetMap by hand by using a satellite imagery overlay.
Could I use a mapper app like this to automate the process, or will I be manually editing GPX uploads in the end anyways?
EDIT: Had to try it now. Simple and polished. I don't see a way to map out new roads, which is understandable (I don't think it's in the scope of this super simple app). I had some trouble understanding why the inner city of my town had no "quests". It turns out you have to go to the application menu and manually "Scan for Quests here". Some places might seem to have few quests. However, zooming in a lot revealed plenty of quests for most any urban area. Kudos for making it available via F-droid!
If the satellite imagery is not available (iD one or in JOSM - those are approved satellite sources, that we can use - you can't use googles). In iD you just click on 3D hamburger on the right and select the source.
Other option is to make a gps trace you can use any application and upload GPX it later on on the osm.org webpage or you can use OSMTracker for Android and make a trace and upload it directly from the phone.
I usually use MapsWithMe a lot so I add POIs all the time.
For paths I just use Vespuci on mobile.
Dunno about easiest, but the most effective is probably to just buy the detailed satellite/aerial imagery, (http://microsites.digitalglobe.com/30cm/) run some machine learning algorithms to identify roads, and upload that.
It looks though like Facebook beat me to the punch: http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/AI-Assisted_Road_Tracing
If it was that easy we'd already be doing that. 30cm imagery is still very low resolution for tasks like spotting dirt tracks under foliage, plus even the current state of the art in image recognition gives far too many false positives and negatives to be really useful without having someone manually double checking everything.
As far as "someone manually checking" - you'd need that in any case, but it is quicker than someone manually doing all the tracing work.
They also had an earlier attempt that was pretty messy.
The identification of roads works pretty good. Separating roads out into main roads and secondary roads and access roads works less well.
The actual issue for tracing paths is that they're hard to distinguish, even from hi-res aerial imagery; a bit of ground knowledge of the area helps a lot, so that you don't map nonexistent paths which are actually fences or such.
I work for Jawg, the startup behind it and we are very close to OSM France.
Feel free to try it and ask questions about Jawg if you are interested in maps, tile-server or something else. (https://www.jawg.io/)
Yeah, I think they could improve the UI by putting a single marker with a digit to indicate there's multiple quests to complete bundled together instead of displaying nothing at all.
Didn't know it wasn't allowed to retrieve information from google maps and compare it to other maps
Would "I looked at GMap/OSM comparison and then reused what I saw in OSM" be wrong in the context of law? Would that be considered copying from Google? IANAL, but it seems to me that Google's position would be stronger than yours - they do have a "no derivatives without written permission" clause in the ToS, and an automated check looks as a completely different intent than normal map use.
It is common for map makers to intentionally put a few errors on their maps, if those errors appear in someone else's map that is proof of a copyright violation. The location and names of roads is a fact that cannot by copyrighted, but errors are a creative work that is subject to copyright. I first heard about this in the 1980's when map meant paper, I suspect google is doing the same thing in some form.
(As for "why it's a bad idea" - it could tempt people to copy data from one to the other, which is definitely a Really Bad Idea)
So, i understand that i can't create an automated list that lists what are the differences between gmaps and osm.
Those rural areas probably don't have any other source of good mapping data so there is more incentive of people to map them. Popular areas with lots of tourists probably already have good maps from other sources so people don't feel the same need to create new maps over them. At least that seems a plausible theory.
I know that several NGOs and humanitarian aid groups use and maintain OSM as their primary source of maps for some of the remote areas they operate in.
Because the map "looks complete" Pretoria hasn't really attracted many mappers since his departure.
Cape Town has a much more vibrant community of mappers. I've also been able to get crazy high resolution aerial imagery for CT from the municipality which helps: http://coct.aerial.openstreetmap.org.za/
In my own neck of the woods, there’s an OSM group with frequent meetups to guide newbies through editing. I think the best way for interested people to get involved is by learning in the company of experienced mappers, not just all by themselves at home. If such a stringent perspective scares some people away, at least the contributions of those who do stick around will be much higher-quality.
There really aren't. OSM is very freeform, almost anarchistic, compared to Wikipedia; very few edits are reverted and very few editors are banned.
I'd say there are probably five rules:
1. Don't copy from other maps
2. Edits should be 'verifiable' and 'on the ground' - i.e. no subjective information
3. Be liberal in what you add, conservative in what you delete - someone else is interested in it even if you're not
4. There's a special process for imports and automated edits
5. Be prepared to engage with other contributors
There are well mapped areas where just barging in and changing things will cause some issues, but for most of the planet the bar for improving things is quite low.
However - there needs to be more "game". I've personally witnessed the obsessive nature of GPS-based mobile games (Ingress mainly). If we could harness some of that towards OSM it could be amazing.
Considering the amount of energy gamers put into customizing and modding - if the right game harnessed OSM data then you'd have a willing workforce on tap.
Edit: Apparently other editors exist for iOS: http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Apple_iOS#Editing_the_map