OSM


Podcasting as therapy in troubled times

At the end of last year Ed Freyfogle and I started talking about doing a Geomob podcast as a way of sharing Geomob with a bigger audience. Ed had done a couple of podcasts with another friend and had learnt the basics. It seemed like a fun idea, two friends who share a passion for geo chatting each week and interviewing past Geomob speakers. We recorded our first podcast at the end of January and […]


When politics meets maps – the movie

Last year, I wrote about some of the challenges of mapping political border disputes and mused on how things have changed with the advent of digital mapping. I have been busy doing some further research on the topic which included a couple of hours with Tom Harper at the British Library and presented on the topic at last week’s FOSS4G in Bonn. Spoiler warning: If you are attending the British Cartographic Society conference on 7th […]


GIS is not a profession (and other less controversial observations) 5

Today I did a Q&A with the Early Careers Network of the AGI. Much of it was fairly uncontroversial stuff about career plans in GI and some trends. My main focus was on choosing a good employer that provides opportunities, career progression and growth rather than being too worried about how much GI you were going to do. Somehow I slipped in the proposition that GI was not a profession and the future would be about […]


When politics meet maps there is no right 1

Old atlases are fun Old school atlases are fascinating, they reflect the ways we learned geography and how we were taught political geography. They are probably the reason that I hated geography at school and dropped it at the first opportunity only to rediscover a love for the digital version much later in life. When I was a kid a lot of the world was coloured pink, for my non Brit readers this was the colour […]


No more getting lost? That’s a shame 2

We recently did a road trip around California navigating around using the TeleNav Scout app and OpenStreetMap offline. Overall the app did very well, we didn’t get particularly lost, the directions were largely clear and understandable (more on that in a minute), we saved a fortune in data roaming charges (thank you OSM contributors) and we certainly didn’t follow any obscure tracks to the middle of nowhere like the picture below. All of which prompted a few disconnected […]


9 years 1

Give me a bit of slack with this post and I will try to contrive a link to geo before the end. Promise! Those of you who know me, follow this blog or my twitter stream will know that my passion for the Arsenal ranks up there with, or even in front of, my love of geo, things open and mistrust of conservative politics. Having  dined on caviar for a number of years, we Arsenal […]


Are you up for Maptember?

It’s the beginning of Maptember, who could have imagined this cacophony of mapping events in the UK over 30 days? Ken Field suggests in his blog that there may be too many events competing for the same audience, perhaps he is correct – even the most committed conference participants can’t attend all of these events. We will have to wait for Maptober to know which events flourished and if any struggled to fill their seats. […]


Opening up the cage

My friend Ed Freyfogle of Lokku, Nestoria and #geomob fame and I, have been talking for a while about business opportunities around OpenStreetMap. After all Nestoria have been using OSM in the background for a long time and at the end of 2011 they switched the mapping on their various web properties from Google to OSM with very successful results, they know the data pretty much back to front and they’ve got some hot engineering […]


An avalanche of Openness will be on display in Maptember

It has been ages since I last sat down to write a post. That is because I have been massively busy working on client stuff, particularly with the great team at Astun, and chairing FOSS4G has been a lot more work than I anticipated and a lot more fun and there have been a few other projects that I am involved with including OSM-GB and Taarifa [plug for my clients and projects over]. The common […]


A tale of 2 crowds at 2 conferences 3

An eventful week with both W3G “the unconference” and Everything Happens Somewhere (the National Land and Property Gazetteer Awards). W3G at the newish Google Campus near Silicon Roundabout, was loosely themed around the question “Is Open the New Black”  and a lot of the talks (including mine) were about open data. The presentation of the day for me was Lawrence Penney (@lorp) talking about 1 dimensional maps (or strip maps) with an enormous, amazing collection of […]


Waze to go 2

I was looking forward to hearing Uri Levene, the CEO of Waze, talking about Redefining Social Networks and Crowd Sourcing at the Innovate Israel event this morning. Waze provides real time traffic information from user/contributors who have also helped them to build a road network by contributing their GPS traces from their phones as they drive. He showed some very itoWorld like animations of contributions flashing up on the map and suggested that they had […]


Forget your Nike and Adidas, this year’s cool geobrand is Open 3

Open Source Geo and Open Geospatial Consortium Standards have been active for over a decade, OpenStreetMap since 2004 and OpenData is the new kid on the block. But something seems to have shifted, it seems that you can barely go for a day in the UK geoworld without stumbling on an event, an article, a vendor or consultant talking about Open something. Why has Open become the badge that everyone wants to flaunt? Not everyone […]