Mapping Los Angeles

The LA Times has been working on a fascinating neighborhood project that will be of interest to people who read this blog. They call it simply “Mapping LA.”

The project is interesting for a number of reasons, but one that attracts the attention is that they explicitly consider what it means to draw boundaries around neighborhoods and thereby create a sense of identity, a sense of place.

Another innovative aspect is that they continue to solicit comments from people about these neighborhoods, so that they are characterized by those who live there. This led them to change and modify their original maps.

Lastly, they also make the data available under a Creative Commons license.

Imagine if this was available for your city. What could be done with it?

VGI in Haiti

Muki Haklay has an interesting post about the state of play regarding VGI (volunteered geographic information) in Haiti and possible conflicts between OpenStreetMap and Google.

Here is a comparison map of coverage, where “yellow means that there is a better coverage in Map Maker, and blue means that there is a better coverage in OpenStreetMap. The difference between the two datasets is expressed in metres.”

Muki says:

there are differences between the two sources of data, and these may matter as the relief work is carried out. The evaluation question is:  for each grid square, which of the datasets contains more information in terms of roads length?