As to work in progress on detection of features and automatic conversion to maps, I've recently found the below website:
and Microsoft released 124 million buildings for contribution to OSM:
There's also been some work by individuals:
A key to the satellite imagery projects is that the imagery be suitably licensed.
It's a great data set, but it'll probably need some curation.
"This small lot has 3 200sqft buildings separated by a tree on it, but is supposed to have a 1200sqft ranch house... Maybe those 3 buildings define the bounding box of the house?"
Some sort of crowd sourced, geo database... ;)
I wonder how to get more people involved, and excited, about OSM? How do we make it the Wikipedia of digital maps?
And does Strava/Mapbox give back? When Strava identifies common bike routes, or perhaps trails, and when Mapbox determines that roads have changed is that given back to OSM in some capacity?
This seems to be the general sentiment of the OSM community, without evidence that merely adding more people will yield better results.
I personally was turned off from contributing due to the emphasis on "community", even at the expense of map quality. I blogged about this 7 years ago.
As with Wikipedia, and perhaps much more so, the community can be very fragmented (both online and, obviously, geographically), and the portion holding the real power is usually very insular.
This essay https://www.jofreeman.com/joreen/tyranny.htm recently popped up on HN in reference to Valve and "flat" or non-hierarchical companies like Valve, often with a caveat to ignore its focus on the feminist movement. However, in the case of another all-volunteer project, it may apply better without that caveat.
Mapbox also uses other data to find things to improve.
> I'm surprised by how much of it is
> done by very few people [...] How do
> we make it the Wikipedia of digital maps?
That vector tiles enable the representation of a subset of the data that a particular group care about (e.g. playgrounds) in order to encourage and enable contribution from a wider and more diverse community?
I'm talking about things like trees, garbage bins and industrial buildings.
Commercial maps has areas where they care deeply, and areas where there's zero care. OpenSteetMap cares about everything. If you are a hobbyst (of practically anything), sooner or later you'll find better representation of your narrow interests on OSM than on Google or Apple maps.
Google has awesome maps of shopping centers. OSM has awesome maps of tracks in woods and parks. You've got to choose your life style here.
OSM has all of that, it's great.
I haven't had time to really dig into OSM. One item that confuses me is the community-based editing which lends me to not wanting to touch it out of fear I'll cross someone (like Wikipedia). I do a lot of personal mapping on Google Earth of routes, points of interest, etc., just dumping GPS data out after walks. I would like to do the same on OSM, and store it as my own private overlay but I don't see how.
You could try http://umap.openstreetmap.fr/en/
As far as crossing someone, it certainly happens that people get territorial and there are lots of relatively pointless objections, but many people welcome improvements in the areas they pay attention to. And then a difference with Wikipedia is that in OSM, if you go look at something and establish ground truth, that's the gold standard.
You can look at http://resultmaps.neis-one.org/osm-discussions to see what a lot of interactions end up looking like. Usually polite and straightforward.
This is what drove me away 7 years ago (actually crossing someone, not just the fear). It's interesting to hear that this is still a relevant concern today.
> store it as my own private overlay but I don't see how.
I would expect this is possible with the right software, but it may mean actually keeping a synced, private copy of the entire OSM database, which could get cumbersome.
You might also check if there have been any projects that have succeeded in doing some kind of dynamic/living fork and what technology they use.
I think it differs from wikipedia in that I am usually adding to the map (mostly paths and buildings), rather then editing existing objects (except when they are out of date) - so conflicts are not likely to occur.
Possibly in regions where the map is already 'perfect' there might be conflicts, but you are less likely to be editing such areas, I expect.
It mentions "amusement_park" to tag areas with
"A venue with pay-to-play games, such as video games, driving simulators, pinball machines, merchandisers, etc."
If you can go look at it and it is relatively static, that's good enough.
So trees are much more accepted than say flowers.
So far only 1 has been mapped using the obvious tag:
I found the app the most accurate source. Though the other maps were better about displaying where guarded and unguarded mountain huts were.
I started trying to contribute to openstreetMAP, to be told that where I was going wrong is that I was thinking about openstreetMAP as a MAP. I am such a fool. It has become a community mantra, and it just sounds silly.
What's wrong with having layers on a digital map? I can see the problem of not having them.
I've added a major post office in the past. Not a new one either.
It's really hard to get enthusiastic about contributing to it when the data is just abysmal here. I hear about people adding hedges and just am baffled that their area is so well-covered that a hedge is a notable omission.
I know, I know, do it myself. Be the change you want to see. But man, without some sophisticated AR tech I don't know how Indianapolis can catch up.
There is an old proverb of "A journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step". Almost all contributions make a positive step for improving the map for everybody. In the time it took to write the comment you probably could have used your local knowledge and aerial imagery to add some details to the map.
I remember when I started adding data to the map in 2006 and it was almost all blank. I was happy to cycle around my local area with a GPS and spend time adding data locally to me. I did it partly because I was interested in the technology but I also had faith that when I needed to use the map someone else would have added the data that was local to them. As it turns out, this faith was justified and the OSM maps of the UK are great.
For OSM to continue to make progress there is an assumptions that there is a subset of the general population that are willing to contribute for the greater good. I know that isn't always the case, the argument of: "why bother when we all use Google maps" is common. As it turns out, what Google displays on the map and what they allow you to do with it is fairly limited.
As Doctor_Fegg argues, OSM is only just beginning on the journey to becoming an essential resource for worldwide geographic information. Right now things are still too focussed on providing a limited set of raster tiles which typically throw away half the data when choosing what can be displayed.
Vectors tiles are an obvious next step for expanding the visualization of the existing data and provide the client with greater access to the underlying data which might not be shown on a raster tile.
Another important point of open data is that it allows multiple sources to be combined together. OSM has never tried to collect everything. For example, SRTM is a better source of altitude information. There are other websites which provide open aerial imagery or street-view style videos. Openness of the raw data is the fundamental differentiator of OSM versus any alternative that I am aware of.
Just like open source software is increasingly relied upon by businesses and the internet as a whole. I believe that open data will also be seen as being a fundamental building block which will never decrease in value or adoption.
It's super easy and once you run out of tasks, you can dig in deeper with this one https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Vespucci or just through the browser.
Germany is quite well documented.
It really only requires a few people who want to stay busy doing something that doesn't require of thinking to finish their day. In the early days of OSM, I mapped hundreds of local hiking trails. I also aligned extremely inaccurate street vector lines to the underlying aerial images for tons of cities. It's a very satisfying activity once you're in the flow.
Similarly, some madman has walked all the streets in my city and annotated all houses with the correct house number.
One of the best parts of OSM is that it's gathering data that is largely static: street location, and names, and number don't really change over time. So you don't need a large number of volunteers to improve a local map in a meaningful way.
Be careful what you wish for. Once there's enough pre-existing data, or many contributors actively adding it, you'll have to worry about offending the "community".
Right now, you can be that community and add what you feel is important in the way and order you feel is important, at least locally.
Alternatively, you could try to ETL  the data from other sources, though free ones aren't always available, especially if something like building data hasn't been put into digital form by the government. Even then, you might be in for a fight to get it for a reasonable cost, even if freedom-of-information or public-records laws are technically on your side.
 certain computer skills are obviously very helpful, but expect to QA your own automation.
Here are some other similar projects:
Personally I would rather buy a $10 modules off eBay or a Chinese website which provides the GPS data in a standard NMEA serial stream.