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Route Planning Where to go, when, what are the interesting places to see
Photo by Ellen Delis, Lagunas Ojos del Campo, Antofalla, Catamarca

I haven't been everywhere...
but it's on my list!


Photo by Ellen Delis,
Lagunas Ojos del Campo,
Antofalla, Catamarca



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  #1  
Old 15 Jan 2015
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Open Street Map for Overlanders

Navigation for Overlanders
We just completed a one-year overland trip from the Netherlands via the Middle East to South Africa. We intend to continue the trip in a few months. For almost the entire trip we had at least five map sources: a country and a region paper map and three digital maps: Open Street Map (OSM), Google Maps and Tracks for Africa (T4A). None of them was perfect and the relative quality differed a lot per country, but overall Open Street Map has been the most valuable for us. We use an Android tablet that is mounted on an overhead rack above the windscreen for navigation (see pictures). Because so many people work on OSM I expect that it eventually will replace many specialized maps.

Open Street Map
OSM can be compared with Wikipedia. It is an open global map database that is filled by volunteers with aid of satellite images (Bing), aerial photographs, GPS uploads and local knowledge. A number of free apps are available for navigation with OSM, for Android a.o. OsmAnd+, MapsWithMe, Navigator and OruxMaps.

In some countries in Africa, for example parts of Rwanda, maps are available up to building level while in rural parts of other countries, for example Uganda, only the main roads have been mapped. However, OSM is expanding very quickly. HOT (Humanitarian Open Street Map Team) coordinates African mapping projects in which people from anywhere can participate. Objective is to create maps for local support organizations such as the Red Cross and Médecins sans Frontières. Amongst the many projects that are presently in progress is mapping in ebola infected countries in West Africa, completing the Lesotho OSM and mapping Africa's National Parks. Such maps are of course very useful for overlanders too.

Camping
Apart from mapping roads and rivers also points-of-interest (POI) are defined in OSM. For overlanders campings are amongst the most interesting POIs. Like all overlanders during our trip we maintained lists of potential accommodation, retrieved from various internet sites and blogs of other travellers, but it would be much easier if there were one database holding most of the sites. Unfortunately in OSM the camping "keys" (defining characteristics of a camping) are more geared towards campings in western countries than to camping possibilities in developing countries where camping can be at full facility campsites, but also at the courtyard of a hotel (with a room key for shower and toilet), a beach with public toilet and beach shower or a bush camp with no facilities at all.

A few years ago a German group has worked on a proposal for the OSM camping definition, but mainly with European campings in mind.

OSM by overlanders

Uploading GPS tracks
Almost all overlanders store GPS tracks. Because for many roads few local people collect tracks these tracks are valuable to improve the OSM roads, mainly to validate against satellite data. For many of the road sections that we drove our track was the only one in OSM, especially in East Africa and the Middle East. Overlanders can help by uploading their tracks and POIs. Uploading POIs can be done easily with OsmAnd+ or with OsmTracker.
.

Map creation
I am currently making our trip again on OSM, checking roads and POIs against the GPS data we collected and the things we have seen. In this way I want to improve OSM. The more overlanders do the same the better OSM will be for all of us. See the Beginners Guide to get started.

POI definition
If other overlanders are involved in map creation I would like to get in contact to make a joint camping definition that is suitable for overlanders to propose to OSM.

Please contact me if you are interested in any of these topics.

Last edited by Jan van Bekkum; 18 Jan 2015 at 08:26.
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  #2  
Old 15 Jan 2015
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Apps are good?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jan van Bekkum View Post
A number of free apps are available for navigation with OSM, for Android a.o. OsmAnd+, MapsWithMe, Navigator and OruxMaps.
That is a thoughtful and useful summary concerning the status of OSM and how the maps are built from the data of the users.

Regarding the android apps that you list, as above, most of them are identified within the thread that I link below but by no means all of them have received comment about how they work in practice.
Also, the comment that does exist about many of the apps is not in any great detail.
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...in-et-63191-22

Perhaps you would like to contribute your knowledge about how the apps that you used perform in the real world while you travelled.
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  #3  
Old 16 Jan 2015
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Hi Walkabout,

Thanks for your reply.

I put a summary of my navigation tool experience on our website www.DeEinderVoorbij.nl. I have added the text of it to the post you refer to.

For the images and links to apps and sources please visit our website.
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Old 28 Jan 2015
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Tool for easy upload of overlander info to OSM

I made a prototype of an android tool for easy upload of overlander information (mainly camping) to OSM.

Please have a look here.

Sample pages:


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Old 10 Feb 2015
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Camping for overlanders commented in OSM wiki

I made an overview of camping needs for overlanders on the campsite wiki pake of OSM. It is here. Useful for people who want to do some camping uploading themselves.
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Old 10 Feb 2015
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jan van Bekkum View Post
I made an overview of camping needs for overlanders on the campsite wiki pake of OSM. It is here. Useful for people who want to do some camping uploading themselves.

Some of your suggested tags won't work. Some are manipulations of already existing tags ... just use the existing tags! The people who produce the end maps use the existing tags .. they won't adapt to your suggestions .. particularly when there are already existing ones in use.

Some of your suggested tags .. well 'hot shower' does not exist .. it is simply shower .. I'm presently trying to add the tag 'temperature' .. for use with showers, baths, water_taps etc. That is presently open for comments .. will move to voting and hopefully be voted 'in'. Then there have to be enough people using it and then enough features with that tag for the renderers (the end map makers) to think it is worth adding. Not easy to add new features .. harder still to change existing tags to some thing else.

If you have an interest in adding things or changing things in OSM tags then join the tagging talk group .. I'm active there at the moment .. 'temperature', 'reception_desk' and a 'new' grouping of 'waste_collection' ... once those are finished .. well I might move on 'tents=yes/no/number'? But consider joining ... https://lists.openstreetmap.org/listinfo/tagging

=========================================
OSM campsite tags..
The page https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/...sm%3Dcamp_site
shows the documented tags .. in blue! The tags in red are undocumented .. and may change.... I'm for changing 3 of them, removing one .. and adding another.. but it takes time. If you want to add data (tags) to OSM camp sites .. use the blue tags on that page and they may appear on the OSM maps.. use something else and that reduces any chance of the information appearing on an OSM map. The data is there .. but won't appear.
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Old 11 Feb 2015
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See response on OSM wiki talk page

Thanks for your quick and extensive comments. I have copied them to the OSM wiki talk page and replied there in order to keep the discussion at one place.
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Old 16 Feb 2015
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The comments have resulted in a substantial update of the tagging proposal.
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camping, navigation, open street map, osm, poi


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