Wednesday, July 12, 2017

OpenStreetMap Around the World

OpenStreetMap user Martin Raifer has released his annual visualization of OpenStreetMap Node Density. The map shows the number of OSM-nodes per square metre on the ground. In other words it provides a visual guide to the amount of OSM data around the world.

The node density is worked out at the end of June each year and the OpenStreetMap Node Density map includes layers to show the node density for previous years. You can switch between the different years to get a sense of where in the world the most editing of OSM has taken place. Alternatively you can view the 'difference' layers to see where major editing of OSM has happened in the past year.

OpenStreetMap is of course an ongoing project to map the world. The world is always changing and OSM needs to constantly update to reflect those changes. Therefore dedicated volunteers around the world are always working to improve the map.

OSMlab's Show Me The Way provides a real-time view of OpenStreetMap's contributors in action. Using satellite imagery from Bing Maps 'Show Me The Way' provides a captivating visualization of the ever improving OSM project, as it actually happens.

You can get a great sense of how all these individual edits to OpenStreetMap has slowly built an incredibly detailed map of the world on Mapbox's Ten Years of OpenStreetMap. Mapbox created this animated map back in 2015 to mark the tenth anniversary of OSM.

The map shows how OpenStreetMap grew in its first ten years from a map of a few London streets to one of the most detailed maps of the world. The animated map reveals how OSM developed from what was at first largely a map of the United States and Europe into a truly global map.
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