This is an important takeaway.
One of the pain points in the OpenStreetMap experience has been lack of performance of the reverse geocoding engine (input lat/lon, get POIs/adress). Or so I hear/see.
It looks like they worked around this by only letting the user click on known POIs.
One small nitpick: I find the simplified polygons to be... too polygonal (forests, bodies of water, etc) at lower zoom levels. I don't know much about this field, but that's probably a result of not picking the right points when reducing the shape complexity? A bit like what bilinear/other filtering does for raster.
I don't see why vector tiles should lower the end result's quality. In the end this is strictly an aliasing issue.
Take those two zoom levels as an example. In the middle of the screen, a big portion of the forest is discarded:
This isn't a very good example because those polygons were likely distinct, but a better job could be done by joining them. I wonder what kind of data is available to the vector engine. Would the pruning/simplification be done server-side, or client-side (with the client only requesting parts of the dataset)? In the later case, I feel like a smarter ordering of the primitives, and maybe some hinting metadata, could make a visible difference already.
On the other hand, it seems that they went with splines instead of polygons for roads, which produces a smoothed-out result. I think they should probably do the same for water bodies and green areas at lower zoom levels.
What I am doing now is searching the location in Google, getting the coordinate and searching the coordinate in OSM for offline map. A pretty dumb workaround but nothing can beat Google's resources on refining their map.
If this project aimed to be the consumer version of openstreetmap, then I would claim that reversed geocoding is the first thing that need to be fixed.
> Mimirsbrunn (or simply Mimir) is the search engine of Qwant Maps. It allows to search for the following "punctual" geospatial objects: addresses, administrative areas and points of interest. It is a web service of geocoding (or more precisely geoparsing) that matches the user unstructured text query with a specific point (or area) on the map (i.e. a latitude and a longitude). The complexity of the problem is to disambiguate user requests. The roots of this ambiguity are numerous. First of all there are a large number of possible interpretations in the world for a given mention of a place: the difficulty is to choose the most "relevant" interpretation. Then there is the natural ambiguity due to the natural language: the user often looks for a place whose the exact spelling is not necessarily known.
Pelias is using its own gazeteer (https://whosonfirst.org/) to index locations and remarkable zones. Whereas Mimirsbrunn relies only on OSM data for this task using Cosmogony (https://github.com/osm-without-borders/cosmogony), a tool that extracts official administrative boundaries and other shapes from OSM data. But the world is a complicated place, and OSM tagging scheme doesn't always lend itself to geocoding purposes. So it comes with a lot a caveats which are still being working on :)
I wonder if there's an open catalog of boundary data analogous to https://openaddresses.io/
Reverse geocoding takes a location and returns an address.
Yes, this problem does exist. Ultimately, probably Google is the best entity in the world that can map search queries to the stuff you want, but qwant maps adopting mimirsbrunn seems like an improvement from my testing.
That is why Apple has now begun to collect geolocation data from even other apps ( https://thenextweb.com/apple/2019/06/10/ios-13-will-show-you... ) in the guise of "transparency" - the data is really to improve their own map apps
Baselessly claiming Apple silently uploads locally collected data is quite a leap of imagination on your end, do you have a source for the uploading part?
- Apple is collecting location data, but not YOUR location data
( https://www.techradar.com/news/phone-and-communications/mobi... ).
( https://www.imore.com/apple-posts-qa-location-data )
(Note the dates on these articles).
Moreover, all this "feature" of collecting data on app usage through "screen time" or the feature of getting location data from other apps to "inform" the user is just a very reasonable excuse by them to collect more data and profile you, in the guise of "transparency".
Having trusted Google once with a similar "Do No Evil" propaganda of how trustworthy they are, and ultimately been betrayed by them, I can recognize that Apple is following the same pattern as Google - collecting more and more data followed with a PR campaigns about how they "care" about a privacy. But despite all this PR about "transparency" note that there is no way to opt-out of any such data collection and sharing!
(No, I am not an Apple basher - I have and use their products and actually advocated for it a lot with others. Still do under some circumstances. But I am losing faith in them ... ).
I appreciate any work in this area. I like the idea of a self-hosted map, if indeed this is open source to that extent.
Is it just that it's not linked to an account? If so, openrouteservice fits the same bill: https://maps.openrouteservice.org/
The two seem to be quite complementary. Each seems to beat google maps in their own arena, at least where I live.
Projects like this are important not so much because of the service they provide, but for the software that's being open sourced.
For example I was able to set up a mapping server by compiling (only to get the latest versions) mapnik and osm2pgsql, downloading data from OSM, and voilà... Next step is way finding, and there are a few options available.
Now I have another one to look into ;-)
Qwant is not bad as a google alternative, but if this simple things are not polished and it's basically impossible to give them feedback, I'm not even gonna try.
I do hope they manage to stay afloat though, as I am happy about any Google challenger.
They are based on topographic map with very high accuracy - better for biking and walking in the forest. They search the route for road bike and mtb.
There is also an Android app.
I just tried a search, and it got a POI location (a Minneapolis park building) right even though I misspelled it, which is something other non-Google maps are weak on in my experience. But weirdly I couldn't get it find my home address (also Minneapolis), either with street number/name/direction, adding the zip code or in full.
obPlug: if you're after OSM-powered bike directions, I run https://cycle.travel/map
I’m unable to find addresses that it doesn’t think I mean Brooklyn or Queens instead of Manhattan. If I replace New York, NY with Manhattan, NY in the search, to try to stay out of Brooklyn or Queens, it ends up showing addresses in Europe instead.
144 W 48th St, Manhattan, NY
144 Rue Frédéric Manhès (Champ-sur-Drac)
If I try to find a hotel called “Grande Cloche” in Brussels, it’s the top result:
A la Grand Cloche
Of maps that work well for location finding, directions, and transit, in both Europe and America, Apple Maps seems relatively privacy preserving.
It should return: https://geocode.xyz/Bitzighoferstr%206+6060+Switzerland "6 Bitzighoferstrasse, Sarnen, Switzerland 6060 / 46.90353,8.2472 "
Even adding the latitude,longitude manually for reverse geocoding returns some strange results: https://www.qwant.com/maps/place/osm:node:1024510041@353_km#...
I'd love to be able to walk on water, but alas, I cannot.
Guess it's still very much Beta.
Perhaps there's a miscalculation for when to use ferries.
If I wanted to get from Canary Wharf to Euston without a car quickly, I would take the metro. If I want to walk, I don't want to use a ferry.
But of course, sometimes it's essential to use a ferry to get somewhere, like an island. Perhaps that's why walking directions include the possibility to use a ferry.
Anyway, my main takeaway is that they've made the OSM maps look really nice, I struggled with OSMAnd to replace GMaps.
Would be cool to see Android/iOS versions -- I rarely look at a map unless I'm navigating somewhere, usually in the car.
Based in Czechia:
2) Curation/Upvotes via transaction needs to be on chain.
- download everything about a large area: city or county or zipcode or similar
- do any kind of searching on the local machine within that data
This would be basically localized offline maps and would preserve privacy.