Posts Tagged ‘usability’



In my Geofabrik work, I often process OSM data for clients in one way or the other. One thing we do is sell a standardised shape file export where we select the most common OSM features and sort them into a couple of thematic layers. We used to export the buildings as well – it wasn’t a lot of extra effort and some clients had use for it. But soon we’ll have to stop doing that, and instead provide the buildings only if someone explicitly asks for them.

The reason is that the amount of building data in OSM is exploding, mainly due to building imports.

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What is this “Usability”, anyway?

Once again, OpenStreetMap usability is all the rage. Or rather, its lack thereof. Development Seed, a US-based software development and consulting firm, have applied for a $500k grant to help them, among other things, make OpenStreetMap editing easier. This, and also some minor web design contributions from Development Seed employees that we’ve had in the run-up to their application, has prompted discussion – on twitter, on the blogs, and elsewhere – about how bad the “OSM UX” (for user experience) really is and what needs to be improved.

Of course, this is not new.

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