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...five-minute jobs that help OpenStreetMap

If it's raining outside, your GPS is broken, you're waiting for a delivery, you're sitting at a station/airport and your service is delayed... then don't just compulsively read crap on the Internet - do something useful for OpenStreetMap!

Here's a few suggestions - and if there's something you'd like done, post it here.

Refining ways

Sometimes people trace roads from GPX traces very roughly, resulting in an angular-looking map. Why not redraw some of these and help our map become more accurate?

  • [1] (Cumbria, UK)
  • (post URLs here)

Tracing from other sources

Our editors allow you to trace from some other sources, like aerial imagery and out-of-copyright maps - a great activity for a rainy day.

Tracing city streets is a little controversial and can reduce the fun for those who actually go out and map them, so avoid that if there are mappers active in the area (besides, you can't get the street names).

But rivers and landuse areas (such as woodland or lakes) are really difficult to survey by hand - and can make the map look a lot better. Why not spend half-an-hour tracing a river? Or add ten village names to the map from an out-of-copyright source?

  • [2] Drains and rivers of the Middle Level, UK
  • (post features you'd like traced here)

Cleaning up Ugly areas

Some areas of the map are somewhat ugly for various reasons. If you know of one, you can add it here.

  • Most of Massachusetts roads were imported as seperate towns. at town boundaries, this means that there are many nodes which the validator can find as duplicates. Cleaning these up usually just involves opening the validator in JOSM and having it 'fix all duplicate nodes'.
  • The braintree area here was imported later than most other road data, and may have some overlaps with other nearby features.


Or you could:

  • Tidy and rationalise this wiki (it desperately needs it)
  • Do some simple coding and help to close some outstanding trac tickets
  • Do some more involved coding - like these Things To Do
  • Start a flamewar on the mailing lists
  • Start a fake blog