Research on the completeness of OpenStreetMap

23 06 2008

OpenStreetMap is the wiki-style answer to maps. It is a collaborative project to create free editable maps of the World using portable GPS devices and other free sources. Due to its open approach the map data is free for anyone to use in whatever way they choose, unlike other map sources such as Google Maps or Yahoo! Maps. I am currently compiling some research for CloudMade to assess the completeness of OpenStreetMap and therefore the viability of its commercial use.

What does it mean for a map to be complete?

Before we can describe what it means for a map to be complete we must think about what is important for different users. For most people having a complete categorised and named road network is probably most important however for some, such as tourists, points of interests may be just as important. Those living in cities may think having complete public transport networks are the most important facet.

Any thoughts on the completeness of OpenStreetMap or maps in general would be truly appreciated.

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