This remembers me of the well-versed critic at https://blog.emacsen.net/blog/2018/02/16/osm-is-in-trouble/
Some parts are on he available tools for OSM (geocoder, …), others are going into detail on the data model used by OSM. My fear is that without a serious redesign and (maybe impossible?) automatic conversion of the database the whole project will grind to halt at some point.
That was a great write-up. It nailed a lot of issues that I had to struggle with when working with OSM and much much more.
It’s a shame that OSM doesn’t seem able to overtake proprietary maps, just like Wikipedia did with proprietary encyclopedias.
One aspect of OSM that kind of disappoints me is the lack of global standardization for tags. OSM seems to be more meant for local maps, as mappers within a region will agree on methods for tagging features.
I agree, I think Wikidata has handled this much better. But to be fair, coming up with an universal ontology is a hard problem.
Yeah absolutely, I doubt we’d have as many different types of things mapped out if everyone had to agree to a universal standard.
I think we should all be happy for that. It’s just too bad that Google or Apple aren’t actually contributing to make this standard better.
I really liked how the container ecosystem structured itself around a Foundation of actors, trying to actually create a great basis and avoid having 5 different legacy with none actually solving correctly the problem space.
Standards with the contribution of large companies are only to ensure their lead, overly complicated, and usually are not new unified models, rather codification of their existing solutions.
Also the standard by these companies would probably be very anglo-centric. OSM is a global community, and it has its strength in that.
One critical difference is that the container ecosystem benefits greatly from having single standard. Map data doesn’t benefit in the same way since you can’t legally copy data across the different systems even if were technically feasible.
After reading this I looked around for an OSM app that would be a relatively decent replacement for Google Maps, it looks like OsmAnd Maps might do the trick. One thing that’s missing for me is public transit, but Citymapper does a good job of that. It’s just nice to flip between car/transit/bike/walk quickly to get a sense of how long each method will take.
For me Maps.me hits the spot. Have you tried it?
Not yet! It was also high on the list of OSM map apps, but I’m a bit worried that it was acquired by a Russian internet company.