A friend just recommended Open Street Maps to me for a little neighborhood project I am working on. I have a few newbie questions I’d like help with.
What is the purpose of OSM? Is it appropriate for my little “project”?
Because of the corona virus, everyone is more or less house bound, so we are all looking for activities, especially for children. One neighbor suggested a “bear hunt”. Neighbors would put stuffed animals, mostly teddy bears, in their windows. Then parents would take their kids around looking to see how many they could find. I offered to make a map of the neighborhood with a little “bear” next to each house that said they would put a bear in the window.
Is this something I could use OSM for? I would need to be able to either place the bears using OSM or download a hi-res graphic and they place them myself using a graphics program.
If this is doable, I would appreciate a few pointers for where to get started.
The signup terms seemed to indicate that everything I do on OSM becomes public. Is they true? If so, it’s probably a showstopper. Any maps I create would need to be private. My neighbors would not be OK with it being publicly available.
OSM is principally a geographical database, a map of the world on a free licence.
In itself OSM is not a map platform (like, for instance Google Maps with its API). Anybody can use OSM data and make a platform on their own - so render map backround based on OSM data, allow users to plot some content over it, search for addresses etc.
For example: Mapbox processes map data from OSM and allows users to style it, it also bundles its own satellite imagery, and has some libraries for maps, routing, geocoding and so on.
Or Pokemon GO uses OSM data as in-game map and to inform the game of what “habitat” is where - however other data is Niantic’s own (like Pokemon spawns, Pokestops).
What you need it a map to put markers on it. I think uMap (umap.openstreetmap.fr) can do what you want, even if it’s quite complex.
The hundreds of points (and lines) you see in an OpenStreetMap editor are the geographical data.
Wouldn’t it be the easiest way for you to make a screenprint of the map of your neighborhood on OpenStreetMap.org and save it as a JPG or PNG? Because I don’t think uMap will let you put teddybear markers. Unless they support custom images.
You can pick them from a pre-defined list or use a custom one via a URL. In case you are using e.g. Overpass to retrieve data, you can even use the value of a field as a variable in a URL to obtain another marker.