As part of the Prime Minister’s London Tech Week round-table event, earlier this week the Government announced that key parts of OS MasterMap will be made openly available for the public and businesses to use. The announcement is one of the first projects to be delivered by the Geospatial Commission in conjunction with us.
We are looking forward to supporting the Geospatial Commission in making this data more accessible and more widely used to continue our open data journey. In 2010 we launched OS Opendata and since then, we have continued to invest in new open data products and initiatives to enable innovation and growth in the digital economy. Over the past eight years we have seen our open data downloaded 1.9 million times. On average, 150 people download OS OpenData every day. That’s 54,750 people a year. Here is a quick trip through our open data journey highlighting some of the key milestones.
Inspired by a previous blog post that re-imagined Winchester as the nation’s capital through mapping, guest blogger John Murray applied this technique to Chester.
There has been much speculation amongst historians and archaeologists on whether Roman Chester (Deva) was intended to be the capital of Britannia.
During an archaeological dig in 1939, the remains of a substantial elliptical building were discovered immediately to the dextral rear (north west) of the headquarters building (Principia).
The map below shows the approximate location of these buildings. The elliptical building would have been approximately where the present-day Chester Market Hall is located.
Calling all OS OpenData users!
Have you struggled to get to grips with GML? Have Shapefiles left you feeling positively un-shapely? Do you dream of a Dump file? Maybe you get giddy over a GeoPackage? Then you may want to take part in our OS OpenData trial that’s being announced at FOSS4G in London today…
It’s been six months since we released OS Open Greenspace, showing publicly accessible leisure and recreations spots in urban Britain, and it’s been fantastic seeing people using the map and finding new places to GetOutside. But did you know that it wasn’t the first greenspace map in Great Britain? Or that there are other important reasons to capture green spaces? Julie Procter, Chief Executive of Greenspace Scotland tells us more.
Why greenspaces matter
Greenspaces matter to people and make a big difference to quality of life, improving health and well-being, delivering environmental services, and creating places where people want to live and businesses choose to invest.
We know that greenspaces can provide cost-effective and sustainable solutions to some of the most urgent problems facing us today – our health, our communities and our economy. To deliver these wide-ranging benefits, and to safeguard the management of our open spaces, we need accurate information about the type, extent, distribution and accessibility of greenspace.
National Allotment Week kicked off yesterday, celebrating the hard work that volunteers, councils and organisations put in on all of the sites across the country. To mark the week, allotment groups are opening their gates and holding barbecues, plant and produce sales, allotment tours, competitions and exhibitions, coffee mornings and afternoon teas – many of them raising funds to support local charities.
Allotments are a fantastic way to #GetOutside and enjoy some fresh air, meet new people, and grow your own fruit and vegetables. The National Allotment Society say that 30 minutes of gardening on your allotment can burn around 150 calories, the same as doing low impact aerobics. Plus, allotments provide essential habitats for wildlife. Just 1 square metre of land can support hundreds of different species.
Did you know?
OS Open Greenspace launches today, becoming the latest free product available as OS OpenData. The new open dataset will help communities, businesses and developers to create products and services that will encourage healthier and greener lifestyles.
A Government initiative to make it easier for people to locate and access greenspaces launched with the release of our open dataset and maps every publicly accessible recreational and leisure greenspace in Great Britain.
You can access the data, covering all of Britain’s urban greenspaces, through our OS OpenData download page. OS Open Greenspace contains data from us and other sources, and you can also see it immediately through our free OS Maps service and app.
The 2016/17 English Football Premier League season is over and what a great season it has been.
Chelsea are champions for the sixth time while Sunderland, Middlesbrough and Hull have been relegated. Tottenham Hotspur say a fond farewell to White Hart Lane after 118 years and finish the season in second. West Ham started life at the London Stadium and finished the season in a respectable 11th place.
To mark the end of the season, the GeoDataViz team have created a one-off visual of all 20 locations for each of the Premier League stadiums. Each of the stadiums have been mapped using OS Open-Map Local and styled using the team colours.
Have a look for your favourite team below in the final league table or view and download a poster of all 20 stadium locations.
The 2016/17 Premier League Table
Last month marked the seven year anniversary of OS OpenData. We have recently shared insights into how our open products are made and how they are being used. In this post we would like to share some of the other activities we undertake to support our open data and support the community of users, including those involved with free and open source software.
The take-up and effective use of our datasets are fundamental to their success. With this in mind we have produced various resources that lower the barrier to entry and make use easier. We also support the community of users in various ways, from sponsorship of events and awards to the release of assets and resources to lower the barriers of entry.
If you are using, or planning to use OS OpenData then you can find help and support here. There are frequently asked questions and a forum for posting questions and keeping up to date with the latest announcements.
The saying goes that it takes a village to raise a child, and it’s certainly a cross-team effort to create and maintain an OS OpenData product within OS. So, in addition to our surveying teams capturing changes across Britain and adding them to the 500 million features in our geospatial database, we caught up with some of the people who work on OS VectorMap District, our customisable backdrop map.
Creating and releasing OS VectorMap District
A couple of months ahead of a new release of OS VectorMap District, Derek Howland and our ‘GenIE’ team extract the data from our core database. We use this core large-scale data to derive OS VectorMap District so that OS OpenData customers can benefit from our meticulous revision policy and enjoy access to open data which is consistent and up-to-date across the whole of Great Britain. The sheer volume of this data means we process it in ‘partitions’ (created using the national road network) and then ‘stitch’ the data back together.
After processing, the data is stored and validated, to ensure consistency of content and currency. Edits which are identified by the system are manual edited in the Cartography team using their wide range of skills and knowledge to resolve any critical non-conformances in the content store data. This is fairly minimal – affecting about 650 features out of 24.5 million features in the content store!
Released in beta format in March 2015, five years into our OS OpenData journey, OS Open Map – Local rapidly became our most popular open data offering with almost 400 downloads every week. Having released the full V1 for OS Open Map – Local last November, we have just released a refresh of our most detailed street-level open data product.