Munich-based cartographer and GIS professional, open-source and cycling enthusiast. See the following pages for mapping activities:
I started mapping for OSM at university and then continuously in my free time. At first only using the iD editor but now I am also using JOSM and Vespucci depending on where I am and how complex the mapping task is. When I stumble across shortcomings of the map data or new data that has not been added to OSM yet, I try to get on my bicycle and explore it on-site if the relevant spots are somewhere near. Occasionally, I collect GPS tracks on my bicycle commutes and bike or hike tours, using my Garmin Oregon 300 GPS device or my Samsung Android phone.
With my background in cartography, I am not only setting a high value on the accuracy and correctness of the data of OSM. I am also conscientious about little details and a pleasing visual appearance of the map whenever I think that it adds significant value to the map (regardless of which map renderer is used). I am also convinced that a good map should always include field work to collect reliable data. For this reason, I try to verify what I map by on-site observations as often as possible. The provided aerial imagery is great but your own perception of a place always accounts for a more accurate mapping. And finally, doing this has changed the way I look at familiar and new places that I visit as I became more conscious about little details of any place I come across.
I am also convinced that one important part of contributing to OSM is not only adding new or more data whenever possible, but also to cultivate and verify existing data. It is important to care for existing data as well and improve, update or sometimes even delete it if something changed significantly or has become obsolete. In this article about the future of OSM, possible scenarios for the data quality are proposed. To me the idea of "map gardening" is a crucial task for OSM-mappers that everyone should take part in from time to time. A map to which only more and more data is added becomes worthless at some point if the existing information is not also maintained properly.
When I record GPS-Tracks, I usually use my Garmin Oregon 300 featuring:
I also use the following apps on my Android phone:
And last but not least:
- Pencil and paper
I am constantly trying to improve data (doing some "gardening", see 'About me') in the area which I can check regularly e.g. on daily commutes. Furthermore I am always trying to add and improve data at places where I have been to e.g. on vacation. Normally, I am only adding information to OSM from places that I have visited in person.
Areas of activity
Most of my edits take place in the South of Munich and the Bavarian Oberland (between Munich and the Alps).
Whenever I am in the mountains, I am collecting GPS data to improve tracks and information about ways and POIs. However, I also really like do some armchair mapping regarding landcover areas (e.g. forests, scrub and scree areas) from aerial imagery. This is some quite relaxing activity that (in my humble opinion) adds a lot of value to the visual appearance of the map but is also reasonably useful for on site orientation.
In general, I map whatever I come across. This includes, roads, foot- and cycleways, POIs and their data, buildings and all that small and medium scale stuff that is relevant for OSM.
Parks in Munich
Green areas, especially parks is something that I put more effort into than other places. Adding correct data, e.g. for ways or wood outlines is highly important to me at this places as they are usually visited by a lot of people and potential OSM data users. I also often check that there is no landuse=forest or other wrong tagging in these areas for example.
Aside from my main activity area, this is where I add data that can be derived from aerial photography from time to time. This includes mostly building outlines at places that I visit occasionally and where I recognize that a lot of buildings are still missing. Where it makes sense, I am also creating multipolygons for more complex buildings or update their tagging for correct rendering.
When adding buildings, I am trying to add as much data for a proper 3D rendering as possible based on the Simple 3D buildings scheme. I also try to improve the 3D data on existing buildings. To view the results of the 3D rendering, I recommend the F4 Demo Map and OSMBuildings which are both updated frequently and also the OpenScienceMap which is not updated as fast as the others unfortunately.
The school building in Fürstenried-West is a nice example of a building with 3D data that I have added.
"A good map will always get you where you want to go." (MacGyver)