Created by Steve Coast, OpenStreetMap is an interactive map used by millions worldwide. Users can freely contribute data, including satellite imagery, pictures of facilities, tags for road surface type, street names, and much more. The service was founded in 2004 as a digital map and routing service after the success of Wikipedia and the predominance of proprietary data in the UK. OpenStreetMap was inspired by free data models, both in terms of content and user use cost. Users may collect data through manual surveys or GPS devices, which crowdsource this online mapping source.
OpenStreetMap, a collaborative project where everyone can help create the world’s free editable geographic database, is motivated by restrictions on map data across much of the world. Map data are considered the project’s primary output because it underlies OpenStreetMap, which people use in free and open software (e.g., routing) applications. The results and success of OpenStreetMap can be seen in over 270 countries and are available in 65 different languages.
They are the basis for electronic maps, both offline and online. OpenStreetMap data drives directions along with geocoding addresses and place names. Primary users include Facebook, Wikimedia Maps, Apple, Microsoft, Amazon Logistics, Uber, Craigslist-and more! There have been favorable comparisons of their data quality to other data sources.
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Did you know about OpenStreetMap?
With the data of OpenStreetMap, users can create various maps. Some maps are physical, like paper printouts, while others are digital, like electronic paper or geolocation on computer/phone applications. Some of the most “prominent” users of OpenStreetMap for driving directions include Uber and Maps.me.
OpenStreetMap imports aerial photography for its satellite imagery maps and other data from various sources for creating an open editing map. There are unique processes for manual editing and automated imports to avoid legal and technical problems.
You may also be interested in the following OpenStreetMap applications found here on this driving directions website: