Hey there!

I'm a bit new to OSM (although I've been watching from the sidelines for quite a while now). I am working on my own site for collaborating on rock climbing routes (think mountainproject.com / thecrag.com but with a different focus), and I'm curious if there are best practices already established for syncing MY users' contributions to OSM.

Let me explain:

I will have users (a handful at first, but hopefully very many eventually) adding climbs and climbing areas to maps. The maps use a mapbox baselayer (which already has OSM data) and our own climbing-specific data layers on top.

This works perfectly well for me, but I can't help but feel that at least some of this is general purpose enough for OSM, and I'd love to give it back. Is there a history of others doing similar things?

Thanks in advance!

asked 07 Sep '15, 09:40

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mike-marcacci
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edited 07 Sep '15, 09:57

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SK53 ♦
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It is definitely possible. In Ireland, through the development of various tools and guides, we have expanded our townland mapping project (very complicated mapping) to such an extent that we took the ETA from 11 years down to 1 because new people had resources to learn from, tools to use and a visual way of seeing their progress.

What you need to do is something along the lines of

  • Figure out the tagging to be applied, your topic should be covered pretty well I would assume
  • Put together a complete SIMPLE TO UNDERSTAND guide for newcomers to participate (seriously, your gran should be able to follow it)
  • If there are tools to be used, explain in detail how to use them at specific points
  • Break everything up into bite sized chunks if you can (5 min videos)
  • Visual progress (stats, maps etc)

Check out the Irish Townland Mapping page for what we did, it may provide some inspiration

I should also add, if you have the skills, its possible to fork the default iD editor to simplify it so that only the tags needed are available. This was done and presented at the HOT Summit back in April for mapping logging roads in the Congo Basin

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answered 07 Sep '15, 15:55

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DaCor
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accept rate: 2%

edited 07 Sep '15, 22:07

Thanks so much for the reply! I looked through your excellent townland mapping project and just want to clarify: your contributors used their own OSM credentials, rather than contributing to your own dataset, correct? In a sense, that's probably the ideal solution, but rather difficult to implement while keeping it extremely simple, I imagine.

(08 Sep '15, 01:11) mike-marcacci

Yes they did it through their own logins

Thats honestly not that big of a deal. If you are asking people to identify, map and tag something very specific, signing up to a website should be the least of your/their worries

I did a bit of digging and there seems to be support for this type of mapping going back several years. How much traction it currently has, I dont know, but what I found is

  • the sport=climbing tag page. Actually, the German version (the English version was copied from it) is much more up to date and maintained regularly by the looks of it
  • the full proposal page to expand it further - note, these, by their very nature, often lead to adoption of the tagging schema even if the proposal becomes inactive simply because nothing better is ever proposed
  • a long and lengthy discussion on the finer points of the proposal. It might be worthwhile connecting with the people on that page as several seem to be very interested in the topic

Just FYI, there are close to 8,000 climbing references already in the database and maps created utilising this info already here and here for example. There looks to be the makings of a JOSM plugin too in the works which will make it a breeze to map this stuff.

Finally, I don't know where you are in the world, but I'd recommend reaching out to your local community to see if there are other people out there mapping these features. You never know who you might find and what help or support they may be able to give. Mailing lists for all regions are listed here.

I hope this has been useful to you and encourages you to think about getting your users to feed directly into OSM.

Simply put, the more they add, the more useful it will be for all climbers, them included.

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answered 08 Sep '15, 03:07

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DaCor
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question asked: 07 Sep '15, 09:40

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last updated: 08 Sep '15, 03:07

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