I am based at MIT, in Cambridge Masssachusetts.
I have mapped some trails in public open space around Lexington. A goal would be to have all trails and openspaces available in OSM. The MassGIS data openspace layer would probably fulfill at least the first part of this.
I think OSM is a great project.
I have two specific areas of interest.
Connecting the green
Green space is important. It is good for people.
I think it is important to connect up little green spaces into big networks.
I have found that public natural spaces of often most useful when connected together. You can hike, run, or bike further. You can access a great trail from your home without having to get in a car, or go through places which are less pleasant. You can make a loop instead of having gto come back the way you went.
On a large scale, green connections are known as "Greenways". There should be a wiki somewhere about how to make them and examples of them.
But I am interested more broadly in connecting green into a dense network. Greenways, like commuter bike paths, form a great value in making the long arterial connections. But also a simple public access provision between two houses nto the green space behind can make a huge difference to the distance to the nearest green space for many people. It can allow a 10km route to be made up out little bits.
See for example in this area
* East Coast Greenway * Western Greenway around Waltham * West Lexington Greenway project in Lexington west of 128
2009-01-05: Very happy to see CRShcmidt's import of the MassGIS open space layer. Massachusetts becomes green. This is a great resource. Now everyone map the trails, OK?
This is great data, and huge. However, map data is only part of all the free data there should out there. So connecting to the semantic web standards is important.
Actually, this isn't so difficult. The key names map more or less to RDF property and class names.
Every feature, way, node should have a URI which, when I look it up, returns information about it in RDF/XML (or N3). That information should give the properties and relations, and relations should use similar URIs of the thing related, which I can in turn look up. Where relevant, the data should me URIs which are in other linked data systems such as Geonames and dbpedia, etc.
My own linked data URI is http://www.w3.org/People/Berners-Lee/card#i
It would be great to replace the map view in Tabulator with OpenLayers, and so be able to switch seamlessly between geospatial, timeline, and generic data views.
Connecting green, connecting data ... maybe there is a common theme.