Monday, 31 May 2010

OS Locator validation mapping for UK OpenStreetMap data

ITO have produced a mapping layer which can be used within OpenStreetMap editors to check for differences between OpenStreetMap data and Ordnance Survey Locator (which has been released as Open Data).

Within the OpenStreetMap editor the new layer appears as a series of boxes with associated names for all streets that are in OS Locator but which are not in OSM within the same bounding box with a small buffer area added.

Normally a box in this layer indicates an error or omission in OSM, however there are also some errors in the OS data. The not:name can be added to the OSM data in these situations and the box will not appear in subsequent analyses and there is less risk that someone transcribing incorrect OS data into OSM at a later date.

An example of an error in OS Locator is the mispelling of Arthur's Terrace in Ipswich has been entered as 'Athurs Terrace'. I have added a tag 'not:name=Athurs Terrace' to the street and it now on longer shows on the analysis.

How many errors are there in OS Locator? I have been through data for Ipswich and have found 7 errors where OS Locator data does not match the relevant street sign. I have added not:name tags to all of these, follow the links to see how they work. It is also useful to add a 'note' field with a description of why the not:name tag has been added.
  1. Berry Road (should be Belfry Road)
  2. Gwendoline Road (should be Gwendoline Close)
  3. Lagonda Drlve (the 'i' in Drive has been replaced with a '1')
  4. The Garrods (should be Garrards)
  5. Inglelow Gardens (should be Ingelow Gardens)
  6. Athurs Terrace (should be Arthur's Terrance)
  7. Fen Bright Circle (it is actually Fen Bight Circles)
In addition to the above I am investigating a number of other potential errors at present which will probably add another 5 or so errors to the list creating a total of 12 out of some 3000 named road names in the town meaning that OS Locator is 99.7% accurate which isn't bad. This test does not of course show the streets which are in OSM but missing from OS but that is a separate test for another day and OSM should perform pretty well on that one.

To access the above mapping from Potlatch add the following string of text into the 'custom' layer box.!/!/!.png

As a technique I would recommend doing a first pass getting rid of the bigger and the less complicated boxes and then do a second pass on the remaining smaller ones as it can be difficult to make sense of multiple overlapping boxes in one pass.

The analysis is current run each night based on the Geofabrik GB data published earlier the same day so changes to OSM will show up in the map rendering not the next day but the day after that. You may therefor choose to do a pass across an area one day and then do a second pass a couple of days later.

Also, do note that the OS bounding boxes seem to have a small rounding error resulting in edges of the bounding box that do not always exactly match the end of the relevant street.

Saturday, 1 May 2010

'Airspace rebooted' animation hits 500,000 viewings

Only a week after ITO World Ltd published an animation showing flight movements over Europe in the period after the 2010 eruptions of Eyjafjallajökull the online plays have hit 500,000. We have had mentions in the online versions of the Economist, the Guardian and the Huffington Post and it was shown on Canada's Discovery television channel.

Airspace Rebooted from ItoWorld on Vimeo.

The animation is based on information collected by volunteers of the FlightRadar24 project who use VHF receivers to gather data from transmission from commercial planes. The base mapping is from OpenStreetMap.

On 17 April 2010 there were virtually no flights:

By 18 April 2010 there were a few more:

By 19 April 2010 there were more flights over mainland Europe but still none from United Kingdom airports:

From 20 April 2010 flights were pretty much back to normal (note that there is still no data for much of France and for some other parts of Europe).

As well as our original animation which we released using a creative commons share -alike license there is now a version set to music and one with an ash cloud overlay.

ITO World are experts at transport data presentation and Open Data. We have produced an animation for Sir Tim Berners Lee which he showed at TED of edits to OpenStreetMap during 2009 and our 'OSM 2008: A Year of Edits' animation has been viewed 145,000 times online and shown at numerous conferences.

ITO have also been documenting the creative ways people used social media to get home after the flight disruptions as part of Ideas in Transit.