Garmin Project

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What is planned?/Was ist geplant?

We're having an OSM Garmin hack weekend in Essen, Germany, on 1-3 February 2013.

Am 1.-3. Februar 2013 findet in Essen ein OpenStreetMap Garmin Hack Weekend statt.


Started as Feedback to the OpenStreetMap-booth at the GeoGames Event, the Garmin Project was started on the mailing list talk-de.

Goal was to find a way to make the various Garmin maps generated out of OSM data more accessible to interested people. This explicitly includes non-mappers and otherwise non-tech-savvy people.

Geocachers and other people approaching the booth often didn't know where to look for maps, knew only one map provider or had no idea (and no interest) about the wiki. While using their GPS on a daily basis, they were often inexpirenced with searching the web for information, navigating wikis and downloading from ftp servers or raw http listings.

The desire was expressed to build a central, easy to find information hub where even those user could get easy access to pre-built maps. (Because they one day still could become mappers, or at least help the project in another way.)


Several options were discussed on the mailing list. They involved roughly two concepts:

  • Generate a well sorted, well described and easy to use website, which allows the preselection of map variants through various criteria such as mode of transportation, routability or coverage. Then present the prebuilt maps with detailed description, screenshots and how-to-use manual.
    • Pros: Easy and reasonably fast to implement, no big technical requirements
    • Cons: We can't use deep links without permission of the original map provider (both missing and to much traffic, missing ads, missing donation button etc.) Without deep links we can't provide the comfort of a single-site map source we were aiming at.

  • Build a map generation server, which builds own Garmin maps with the styles of the existing maps, but under own control. Make them available through a well sorted, well described website or generate them on demand.
    • Pros: Full control over map generation and presentation. Will also provide a safe haven for abandoned maps, widen the scope of existing maps.
    • Cons: Very complex to build and maintain. Powerful and pricy hardware needed. Need full cooperation of external map providers to open source their tool chains, settings and styles.

Both ideas also suffer from the problem of deprecation and (quite probably) missing maintenance. Also both versions will not be able to list ALL maps and might focus the attention away from other niché-maps available elsewhere.

It was mentioned that the FOSSGIS e.V. could possibly provide both some resources as well as initial funding to a project like this. (Especially needed for option 2).

The topic was suggested to be part of the next Hacking Weekend. Both map providers and programmers should meet to brainstorm about the possibilities.

Location/Der Ort

We meet at the Linuxhotel in Essen. With the support of the FOSSGIS e.V, the participants cost amounts for the three days (breakfast and accommodation) to a maximum of 30 euros.

Das Hack-Weekend findet im Linuxhotel statt. Dank der Unterstützung durch den FOSSGIS e.V. belaufen sich die Teilnehmerkosten für die drei Tage ( d.h. Frühstück und Übernachtung) auf maximal 30 Euro.

Address: Villa Vogelsang Antonienallee 1, 45279 Essen-Horst


Friday 1.2.2013

  • Arrival from ca. 18:00
  • Acquaintance with beer and pizza

Saturday 2.2.2013

  • common breakfast 9:00-10:00
  • Introduction
  • Determination of issues
  • Distribution of topics to small groups or for joint plenary
  • Lunch 13:30 - 14:15

Sunday 3.2.

  • common breakfast 9:00-10:00
  • further work - 16:00
  • Check out the afternoon / evening


Who From x Room
Lars Lingner Berlin Fr-Su DZ
Marc Gehling Dortmund Fr-Su DZ
Steve Ratcliffe Fr-Su EZ
Johannes Formann Essen Fr-Su -
Wolfram Schneider Berlin Fr-Su DZ
Carsten Frankfurt Fr-Su EZ
Stefan Erfurt (late)Fr-Su DZ
Manfred Heilbronn Fr-Su DZ
WanMil Sa no
Robert Joop Berlin Fr-Su DZ
Michael Weidemann Wuppertal Fr-Su DZ

Plan and next steps

Despite having not reached a consensus about the best approach, there are common task to do:

  • collect existing Garmin map providers on this wiki page (and try to find a contact address)
  • approach the providers, explain the project, point to this site and ask about permission for deep links and willingness to share their tool chain
  • invite them to the hacking weekend
  • report back any information to this site, generate sub-sites for specific map informations like tool chain description, option files etc.
  • design and build a website on which users can select their map according to given criteria (this is needed for both approaches)

Despite having no real clue about server side software development, User:Chaos99 has started to build a small scale sample application for the map generation management of option 2. It can be found on GitHub. Help is welcome.

Maps and their creators

Map Creator informed? permissions / statements interested in the Hacking Weekend notes
mkgmap Programmer Steve / User:AcousticNewt yes email yes
User:Computerteddy Carsten / User:Computerteddy yes via Talk-de Deeplinks allowed yes paticipates in talk-de discussion
link to style file
link to typ file
RadReiseKarte Henning User:aighes yes via Talk-de tool chain under CC-BY 2.0 yes, but no time paticipates in talk-de discussion
link to complete tool chain
Reit- und Wanderkarte User:Nop yes via Talk-de paticipates in talk-de discussion User:Lambertus yes email versatile download site
All_in_one_Garmin_Map Christoph User:Master yes email Felix Hartmann User:Extremecarver yes email yes, but no time no gmapsupp.img, but installer, style-file available Felix Hartmann User:Extremecarver yes email yes, but no time no gmapsupp.img, but installer, style-file available Torsten Teubert yes email based on Geofabrik extracts Ralf Kleineisel User:R_kleineisel yes email Florian Jesse yes email Minko ligfietser yes email Johannes Formann yes email yes
LKW Karte 40t Marko User:Win32netsky yes via mail yes whole directory "garmin" with gmapsupp.img torrent and direct download Klaus Tockloth yes email yes, but no time
µMap User:Speedpilgrim yes email Michael Wößner yes email
France Maps Frédéric Bonifas yes email
Garmin Maps User:Kukuk yes email yes, but no time
alternativaslibres User:Carluti yes via mkgmap-dev yes Based on Geofabrik and own extracts

Invitation to a Hacking Weekend

The grant application request for funding is subsidized by FOSSGIS. Added request to free weekend in the Linux Hotel.