Questions & Answers - Buildings are the new Streets

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  • Who is speaking?
    • Danijel Schorlemmer
    • Felix Delattre
    • chair: Miriam Gonzalez (@mapanauta)
  • If you had to make a prediction, when do you think building data would be mostly mapped? 1 year? 2 years? Or more?
  • Have you considered this week’s release of UK government IDs (“UPRNs”) for every “property”, as open data?
  • Could you talk a bit on how you estimate building occupancy from the data (for the ones that are not tagged)? Thanks!
    • do you use Infraa-red images for that ?
  • Privacy is a concern of many, have you considered this, is there a way for people to say “I don’t want my building listed” or a way to say, let’s use it but anonymise it?
    • (But they are from satellites, so not personal?)
    • (but they are visible from street ?)
      • I didn’t say it’s logical ;)
    • (indiebio: I am interested in metadata, energy use, water use, [computed] water harvest or green energy potential from roof area - when does this become a ‘privacy’ issue? I don’t know but this is feedback I have received before…)
      •  (it’s fine, we can leave this for external discussion, thank you)
    • For me it is about public good vs private rights, maybe.
  • What do you consider a building? For example, are temporary/makeshift/informal settlements or buildings under construction considered a building?
  • What was the thinking behind hosting your code on Debian’s Salsa? Is it Debian related?
    • Great to see people using it! Open, free, inclusive. :)
  • You say that you detect tagging errors. Have you thought about giving this back to mappers, so they can fix it?
    • do you have examples of tagging errors ? is it just typo?
    • (comment: you can give back the errors, not the fixes)
  • Canada was trying to map all its buildings in OSM by 2020 - do you know if this was achieved or will be finished in the year?
  • What is your refresh schedule for pulling OSM data?
  • What is the URL of GitLab / GitHub repository of the project ?
    • Or for the project itself?


  • Expect big resistance: many buildings in certain countries are actually illegal according to local laws, so will be quite embarrasing…
  • Comment:
  • Glad you are putting buildings in their right places (I hope). For me doing it by hand in iD, the offsets due to misaligned imagery are many meters … which one only finds out years later.  We iD mappers just can’t tell which imagery is correct: Bing, Maxar, etc. Flip a coin. (Taiwan.)