Berkeley BioGeo data

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On a Berkeley server it is possible to download roads, rail roads and so called mask coverage files for free for a number of countries, the so called gData set. I am not able at the moment to confirm that "free" statement and certainly am unsure whether we can just add this data to the OSM. A contact person, R. Hijmans, is mentioned on the site. Needs to be looked upon by our legal people

This data set uses a blanket CC-BY-NC-SA. The NC part makes it incompatible with OSM. Individual parts of the database have additional restrictions. We may need to look at purging them. Chriscf 09:10, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
I'll try to get authorization to use the administrative boundary data in OSM for the countries covered by the CC license. Seems to be worth the effort :) Source of data: [1] --Fsteggink 16:33, 14 February 2009 (UTC)

Contents of the files

Each ZIP file contains 4 files:

  • .dbf file
  • .prj file
  • .shp file
  • .shx file

It is stated on the site that the vector data is in the ESRI format. The shape file contains nodes and ways (and hence interesting surfaces). Hints on decoding the data are given here.

Mapnik can handle and render ESRI datasets, but the conversion towards OSM xml format is to be done differently.

Since I'm only a newbie on this, I'd like to see feedback on this data as follows:

  • Can and may we use it?
  • How to decode it into OSM?
  • What is it worth?