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I must be missing something here; this may be a stupid question, but why can't OSM import all the data from the Ordinance Survey OpenData? Things like OS Locator for street names, Land-Form PANORAMA for contours and MiniScale and OS Street View for road data would pretty much perfect the OSM UK maps.

asked 17 Sep '11, 15:51

tmanchester's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

This issue is frequently discussed on the talk-gb mailing list.

In general, OSM is considered by many to be a project where we survey the planet, and not a melting pot for other people's data. If someone wants to make a map from Ordnance Survey data, nothing keeps them from doing that; they don't need OpenStreetMap for that. OpenStreetMap, on the other hand, is very interested in having a community that cares for, and maintains, the data - this is something a data import does not give us. On the contrary, a data import signals to people on the ground that everything is done and no further work required!

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answered 17 Sep '11, 15:58

Frederik%20Ramm's gravatar image

Frederik Ramm ♦
accept rate: 23%


And where we have surveyed we have roads that aren't on Streetview, correct names, which isn't always the case in OS Locator, footpaths which aren't in any of the open datasets, verified bus stop locations, house numbers, shop details and many other things that aren't available from the OS OpenData. Having said that I have added things like coastlines and woodlands locally based on the OS OpenData Vectormap data, and it can be a useful additional source when used along with surveys and Bing imagery (for example).

(17 Sep '11, 16:38) EdLoach ♦

The OS OpenData is definitely not 'perfect'. It has loads of errors in it. eg OS Locator and OS StreetView have misspelled or just plain wrong streetnames, or streets that have been demolished years ago, or names that are not signed or used by anyone. And OS StreetView is fairly low resolution, so not really very accurate for positions of things like street lines. Its often possible to map streets more accurately with multiple GPS traces, plus aerial imagery.

The OS Locator data can be used with comparison tools (eg Musical Chairs), which can highlight possibly unmapped areas in OSM, or where there might be incorrect street names. Then these places can be surveyed and rechecked to correct this. But if all of the OS OpenData was imported, there would be no separate source to compare with to spot mistakes.

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answered 17 Sep '11, 16:35

Vclaw's gravatar image

accept rate: 22%

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question asked: 17 Sep '11, 15:51

question was seen: 5,407 times

last updated: 17 Sep '11, 16:38

NOTICE: is no longer in use from 1st March 2024. Please use the OpenStreetMap Community Forum