The OSM Contributor Activity Report – Edition 2014

The OpenStreetMap (OSM) project celebrated its 10th anniversary in August 2014. For almost 10 years it has increased its number of registered members. Even though some contributors stopped their contributions to the project, each day new mappers start collecting features for the free wiki world map (aka database).

In my last contributor report in 2013, the OSM project had a total of 1.3 Mio registered members. For July 2014 this number has increased to almost 1.6 Mio registered members. Similarly to last year, I checked how many contributors created one or more than ten changesets or performed more than 10 map edits. This information can be retrieved from the changeset dump.

NewContributorsPerMonth.201408

The figure above reveals a similar trend to the ones we saw in the past few years: Less than 1/3 of the 1.6 Mio registered members actively contribute to the project (450,000 members). Furthermore, only a small group of 16% (270,000) or respectively 6% (100,000) of the contributors performed more than 10 edits or 10 changesets.

The Average Age of OpenStreetMap Objects

Joseph Reeves asked me on twitter the other day if “anyone knows the average age of @openstreetmap objects?“. Here we go: Based on the complete OSM data history file from here (June 14th, 2014) and some additional lines of code, I conducted a simple analysis.

Overall 400,000 mappers of the more than 1.7 million registered members contributed to the OSM project. Almost 375,000 contributors created at least one Node, 325,000 one Way and 70,000 one Relation object. In total the contributors collected more than 2.7 billion Nodes, 263 million Ways and 3 million relations. The percentage of newly created OSM objects (Nodes, Ways & Relations) has been more or less at the same level for the past few years (2010 to 2014): with17% to 20%. The following diagram shows the percentage of each created OSM object type.

created_objects

A précis: Where are the US mappers at?

This blog post is a summary of Dennis’ and my State of the Map (SotM) United States presentation. Maybe some of you already know about our publication: “Comparison of Volunteered Geographic Information Data Contributions and Community Development for Selected World Regions”. From the abstract: “Our findings showed significantly different results in data collection efforts and local OSM community sizes. European cities provide quantitatively larger amounts of geodata and number of contributors in OSM …”. “Furthermore, the results showed significant data contributions by members whose main territory of interest lies more than one thousand kilometers from the tested areas.” Especially the last finding is quite interesting when considering “arm-chair-mapping” in OSM.

However, for our SotM US session we repeated some of the conducted analyses for 50 urban areas in the United States to see whether similar patterns could be determined. You can find the session abstract here; additionally the ppt slides and also a video are online. The following animation shows the number of contributor’s evolution in the US from 2007 to 2014.

Filtering OpenStreetMap Changesets by a Specific Comment

In my last blog post I showed that OpenStreetMap (OSM) changesets offer a great opportunity to visualize the latest changes to the OSM map or to compute some up to date descriptive statistics of a particular region (Typhoon Haiyan OSM Response Map). Oftentimes OSM contributors use tags, comments or hashtags in their changesets to provide additional information about the features they mapped. For example it is quite common to add a specific hashtag, such as #notlm (Night of the living maps), to the changeset comment to link to a mapping party or another event. To filter or collect changesets with these notations, I developed a new webpage: http://resultmaps.neis-one.org/osm-changesets

osm-changesets

Typhoon Haiyan OSM Response Map

As you may know by now, the Philippines have been struck by one of the largest Super Typhoons ever recorded. Many casualties are expected (especially in Tacloban) and even more people are in need of help. While some of us have been busy working with the “Stand By Task Force” to analyze and geolocate tweets with useful information, the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) has been making progress as well.
I have spent some time to develop a website that visualizes the latest changes to the OSM map (utilizing changesets) in the Philippines and hope that it helps to determine areas that might be already worked on, while other areas are lacking any new information. You can find the map here: http://resultmaps.neis-one.org/osm-typhoon-haiyan-2013

osm-activities

Additional information can also be found in the OSM Wiki and for all German fellows at the Wochennotiz blog, in case you are interested in actively contributing and helping the disaster response teams. Any mapping efforts are much appreciated!

It’s about time – OpenStreetMap Contributor Activity Report 2013

One and a half years ago (end of 2011), one of my open access publications (“Analyzing the Contributor Activity of a Volunteered Geographic Information Project — The Case of OpenStreetMap“) was published. It contained several interesting findings about the contributions made by the community of the OSM project. The results showed that the community follows a particular pattern that many other online community based projects tend to struggle with too. Only a small number of the members really contribute in a meaningful way to the project. Additionally, the publication illustrated how many contributors are located in Europe and other areas of the world and how and where mappers contribute data over a certain period time.

The State of the Map. United States. Street Network. 2013

Last year we wrote a journal paper in which we analyzed the OpenStreetMap (OSM) dataset of the United States which was published on May 28th, 2013 in the Transactions in GIS Journal. You can download a free pre-print version here. This paper has been published just on time to add to the discussion at the upcoming State of the Map United States conference which will take place in San Francisco and includes some presentations about data imports to OSM. Unfortunately, Dennis and I cannot attend the conference this year, so we decided to write a blog post with some additional and up-to-date numbers.

Add a Note in OSM … Stats & Personal Profiles

Since April 23th, 2013 each visitor, user or contributor of the OpenStreetMap (OSM) project can “add a note” to the map in order to easily mark an error or missing object in the map data. You can find more information about this new feature in the OSM wiki. It is a great new way for people to contribute to the project by improving the data in a simple way. To provide a better overview I created a new webpage which shows some statistics about the new feature. You can find it here: resultmaps.neis-one.org/osm-notes

Besides some general information the webpage also shows the overall, opened and closed number of notes per country. The second table illustrates the OSM contributors who already opened, commented or closed a note. All tables on the page are sortable by clicking on the column headers.

Introducing OpenStreetMap Contributor Activity Areas

One month ago I wrote a blog post about a new website which allows you to see other OpenStreetMap contributors in your area. Overall the feedback was very positive, thank you very much for that! However, now it is time for a new extension to the “How did you contribute to OpenStreetMap?” (HDYC) webpage. As I mentioned in my last blog post, I used an algorithm (which is described in a paper that I wrote here) to compute and determine the activity area of a contributor based on her/his changeset centers. The following figure shows the new function that was added to the HDYC website visualizing the activity area of a contributor! Sorry Harry, as always you have to be our guinea pig, but you have a really awesome activity area :)

The OpenStreetMap Contributors Map aka Who’s around me?

The wait is over! As I mentioned in December, I have been working on an interactive online map, which shows you all volunteers of the OpenStreetMap world on a map. The first three layers contain the activity center of a contributor, her or his first created and latest modified node. The algorithm to determine the activity area of an OSM volunteer has been described in my publication here. I should mention that I used all changeset centers instead of all created nodes of a contributor. This way the computations don’t take as long and the process can be repeated every week based on the weekly OSM changeset dump.