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The True Mapping Party. How we made a Great Bow card

Velikie Luki Mapping Weekend.png
On September 11-12, the Great Luke Mapping Weekend meeting took place, where amateur cartographers from Russia and Belarus drew a map of Great Onions from scratch. This is not the first experience of this kind, but for the first time people massively gathered solely to the glory of OSM. Until this week, the event was not covered, dying quietly, like everything that happens in Russian-language maps. But how, then, to be followers, who wants to organize meetings in their cities? Having dedicated the evening to future activists of the map movement, Ilya Zverev tells the story of the organization of the Mapping Party according to all the rules that it was possible to invent.


The idea of ​​such a collection arose suddenly. While reading about foreign Mapping Parties, I involuntarily envied: how well everything is organized with them! Then he figured out where to best get together, if we want to see people from everywhere. The great Luke looked tempting: almost exactly in the middle of St. Petersburg, Minsk and Moscow, not drawn at all, at the same time - a hundred thousandth. In addition, my parents live in Pskov and could give a car for the weekend, so besides the Onions themselves, we could draw more roads in the Pskov region.
July 9 threw the idea, and then hoped that everyone will forget, because the organization of entertainment - scary and can not. But on August 12, loir picked up and recalled that there was no way back, and on August 15 , with the support of several famous people in the Russian OSM, I made a wiki page and an ad on the forum .

Intelligence service

The pin-mix driving experience required me to explore the terrain. Without delay, on Sunday, August 22, my wife and I sat in the car and drove off. Along the way, I was carried away by drawing Novorzhev , arriving in Luke at lunchtime. What now and what for we arrived there? On the recommendations immediately looked into the central hotel of the city, "Jubilee." Inexpensive rooms in quantity, free internet, a restaurant through the door struck, and to continue the search for hotels already somehow did not draw. Nevertheless, we went to “Harmony” and made sure that it was far away.

The city itself, not prominent in the satellite image, made an impression rather big, and the hope of drawing it all over the weekend evaporated. However, the tightness of the center meant that we would have time to get around it. In contrast to the low-rise buildings, which extends from all sides of the city for kilometers. We rode around the city in a car, found a book with a map of the Great Onions: wall-mounted, six years old and with errors that were noticeable even after two hours of riding a car.

To the question of the streets on the map:

August 24 updated the wiki page , after which it remains to wait for volunteers.


On August 27, pashgan sent a link to a photo of the Great Onions from a height . The fact is that every June international meetings of aeronauts take place in the city, and the sky is painted with dozens of balloons, and the cameras of a lucky few give excellent pictures of the city. On the 30th, Komäpa hinted that it would be nice to contact the author of the picture, Igor Lobashov, about the source code and other photos. In response, I received not only permission to use the picture to create a map, but also contact Igor Shelaputin, a regular photographer of the competition. I wrote to the last one at the very last moment, on September 7, but he answered instantly, agreeing to share the appropriate photos from his collection. Of course, preparation and uploading of photos took some time: we received them only on September 27, and we haven’t disassembled them yet. Ukrainians are heroes here: let us not have satellite images of Great Onions, but aerial photography is even more useful for the map.

Master plan

Everyone knows that not every source is suitable for drawing an OSM map. In fact, only the eyes, GPS and government documents, released under the law in the public domain. On September 2, AkMeR suddenly brought me to the master plan of the Great Bow. As I didn’t guess to look for it before, I’m not going to attach my mind. On the site, however, only two links worked; I immediately wrote to the administration about this, but have not received a reply so far (October 7). The general plan turned out to be excellent: all railways, all houses, but very small in size. I hoped for a quick response from the administration and did not immediately redraw the picture. Did it on the weekend. It’s a pity that the roads themselves are not marked on the plan, only as holes between quarters. However, the Great Bow map began to resemble a map.


On September 7, andrewsh hinted that it was time to make a “pie”: a breakdown of the city into areas that would be distributed among the participants. It seems simple, but in fact everything wants to make the pieces bigger. At the same time, it is better to do them less so that the participants do not get bogged down (as I once did, having walked forty kilometers along Pskov). It was very helpful here that I had already visited the city and represented its scope and structure of development. Drawing a cake is something like drawing a pin-mix card: not only bring benefits and time to spend, but also give participants equal chances to feel the city, to look at its sights. Finally, choose meaningful areas of the city. In general, after half an hour the cake was ready .

As everyone who has experienced the session knows, the closeness of the deadline increases the desire to do other things. On the night of September 8, I wrote a plugin for JOSM to simplify alignment of the IRS substrate. Of course, there is a connection with the Great Onions: according to the results of the August trip, I drew all the roads in the area that were viewed on satellite images.

So, in the evening of September 9th - the train to Pskov, where from Oleg “gryphon” we will go to Luka by car. On the evening of September 8, I tear my hair out of my head : let the office (several tablets are expensive, contagious, - pens, pencils, paper) have already been purchased, but templates like Walking Papers are not made, business cards (to answer the question “what are you smelling about here? ") Not made, a poster (for a general photo) is not made, stickers (just as souvenirs) are not made. As a matter of urgency, with the help of andrewsh, Komjapy and Inkskape I create a souvenir, and the next morning in the copy center at Vosstaniya, I print it out.



In the afternoon I cut a hundred-page pie from pdf with street outlines sent by andrewsh. The process is simple: uploaded the file to inkscape, ungrouped and reduced the thickness of the lines to a minimum, so that they looked drawn in pencil, and you could write over them with a pen. Then I drew a rectangle with A4 proportions and began to cut them into pieces, two or three per district, into the “RR-N.png” files. If a piece should be at an angle, I turn all the Great Luke, because otherwise not a rectangle, but what the hell is exported.

Friday, September 10, 9:03. Zverik: “something is nervous to me :)”


Gathering in the morning, after breakfast. Many see each other for the first time, because they feel somewhat constrained. From me, apparently, waiting for some speeches, I swallowed like a tongue, why everything is strange and strange. Finally, I decided that since the conversation did not add up, we must immediately get down to business, and began to explain what we are going to do.

The principles of drawing a super detailed map once debugged on themselves , and it was them that explained. Of course, in the absence of high-rise buildings, GPS and a camera will also come in handy, together turning into the ultimate photo recorder of everything in the world. Stickers immediately found a place on the tablets, each took a dozen business cards and bypass sheets for their pieces of cake. The latter were far from obvious; as a result, each had to sign the main streets and draw an arrow to the north. Off we go, meeting in three hours at the hotel.


I think each of us has a story to tell about his area. In the eighth piece, for example, is a hypermarket, surrounded by a swamp. And an amazing network of streets, not reflected on commercial maps. And the club "Back to USSR", the name pleased his wife. In general, there are too many things: three hours later, on the steps of the pedestrian bridge in the direction of the 19th piece, we phoned everyone and agreed to postpone the meeting for an hour. Then we went and counted all the steps on the bridge and all the rails at the station.

club of unnecessary railway workers

The most effective way was to work in pairs: I sketched a diagram of quarters on paper, with all the houses, driveways and fences, and Julia with GPS in one hand and a camera in the other rushed from one sign to another. Oleg had the hardest part: he walked alone, and the GPS didn’t get it. Therefore, he was even late for lunch, setting a goal to die, but ideally around his area.

In the lobby of the hotel, it turned out that we were not the only ones with the scale. When we came out on the border of the district and began to sketch the houses, the road network was not to cover our eyes, and therefore the rectangles painted the minimum size. Having walked around two blocks in this way, an insight suddenly descended on me: “this line is such and such a street, and this, then, means such and such!”, And instead of 1/5 of a page we turned around one and a half. A trifle in the corner of the sheet next to the sweepingly outlined houses in another corner looks funny.

We dined at the suspiciously empty restaurant “Bayazet”, where everyone was dreaming on the other floor; after resting.

and boltology

In the evening, met for dinner at the coffee shop "Coffee". Rumors did not let us down, the cafe turned out to be awesome: a lot of delicious tea and unmatched cakes. And, unexpectedly, decent food. At first, they were snacking with five of them, but gradually familiar faces appeared in the doorway - and now the entire cartographic company, shifting the tables from half the hall, laughs and rings with cups. The evening broke out, the morning awkwardness evaporated.

Zverik, Zkir, vvoovv, liosha, gryphon

Warmed by tea, we decided to walk around the city. They made a circle around the block, then walked across the bridge — it didn't stop, even the light rain did not interfere. During the conversation, we visited the Obelisk of Glory in the park, and Vova “vvoovv”, bypassing this park, told about each stone. Right, an experienced osmer is a potential guide. In the dark we found a cable-stayed pedestrian bridge and, already on the other side of the Lovat, returned to the hotel.

But do not sleep well, really? Fell into the five-seater room of Belarusians and Tverchanes, where they chatted with open laptops well past midnight. It was there that they took the main photographs: first, a serious forum , then a human one for everyone else . They waited for two o'clock at night, when vvoovv hit the train, and went to sleep. The day was very good.


Oh, I woke up very lazily, breakfast at the hotel did not give a chance to get stuck. At the gathering in the lobby, they decided to wander around a bit more, having examined the untrodden areas.

Remember business cards to answer the question? Although they did not come in handy before, by the end of Sunday Brodilov, a guy in a jeep pulled up suddenly and like this: “WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE?” No wonder, after all!

andrewsh, Komzpa, Lynx, Zverik with his wife, gryphon

Next - lunch at Lovat (tastier and cheaper than Bayazet) and a long rest on the sofas of the hotel lounge. They boasted results, sketched trivialities on the map, read the Internet, did not touch anyone, or repaired Linux. So, hour by hour, it was time to get ready for the journey: take the Belarusians to Novosokolnichesky railway station, and us to Pskov. In practice, they were convinced that six of them fit into the car. And when you see a train to St. Petersburg at Novosokolniki, you can arrive in Pskov three hours before his arrival.


Each draws their areas in different ways. Someone considers the POI to be the most important, bypassing the area not so much for the contours of the houses as searching for churches, cafes and shops. Someone is serious about addressing, first of all drawing houses and putting numbers on them. I, in an attempt to sketch everything in general, missed a lot, and the strange winding geometry of the quarters on my roundabout pages hardly resembled what is seen on satellite images. For today, October 7, only Belarusians, perhaps, did not draw everything they managed to collect. In the end, the main thing we got: met, saw each other and completely talked.

By the very process - to draw the collected infinitely lazy. You were already there, saw all these houses. Return and meticulously distill from paper to editor? Even when you manage to force yourself, there are too many details. Quarter by quarter, hour by hour. By the time editing the card is even longer than the collection. Click the shutter of the camera, draw a line on paper - faster than choosing the right combination of tags for points and lines. Faster than trying to guess on the six-meter satellite image the outline of a high-rise building, so as not to draw a house at all.

But just considering the area created by you from scratch on osm.org , you feel like a real cartographer.


80n was right: the main thing - to choose the day and place, the rest is organized by itself. We all do the same thing, so sooner or later we will find common topics for conversation.


Ahead is the organization of map - sharing in St. Petersburg . I will try to complicate by inviting newcomers. After all, the more of us - the more fun!

Ilya Zverev, "Zverik"
October 7, 2010
Posted on Habré at the request of the author.

Source: https://habr.com/ru/post/105807/

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