The One Where Di-Ann Says Crowdsourcing Makes the World More Efficient

This week we had a great guest in Di-Ann Eisnor of Waze who was kind enough to join us right off stage from her talk at APPNATION. It was a great conversation about why Waze did what they did, how they’ve evolved, how crowdsourcing is improving their map and how they see advertisers as the way to make their map better for their users (very interesting). Di-Ann was on a WiFi at Moscone Center so the connection wasn’t great, but it is worth watching (it did clear up a bit later in the show).

You can watch the video anytime on the WeoGeo Video page (as well as the IRC log with a lot of questions and discussions) or see an archive of all the previous shows.

ogr2ogr every Shapefile

Earlier this week I was working on a map in TileMill and ran into an issue with a layer. At the time I couldn’t figure out which layer but Dane was good enough to help track it down. It ended up being an issue with the shapefile spec being vague and the Natural Earth shapefile being problematic. Mapnik and thus TileMill were not at fault, but the shapefile itself.

Shapefiles are used because they basically are the interchange file for GIS information. Others have tried with SpatiaLite and File Geodatabases, but neither has been accepted at large by the community. After spending half a day debugging my Carto for no reason, I’ve come to the conclusion that you must run ogr2ogr on every shapefile you share and every shapefile you consume.

Freaking Sweet

Assume every Shapefile is corrupt and your life will be much easier. I’m going to move to KML personally.


Or as a very wise man puts it:


The One Where Kate Likes Being in Charge

This week was a fun hangout with my good friend Kate Chapman. Humanitarian OpenStreetMap is a wonderful project that has lots of opportunities to get involved. Kate also talked a bit about what it’s like to work in a developming coutnry and how they are mapping locations around the world. Kate and the rest of the HOT project have worked their butts off and I’m glad to see things moving forward nicely. You can watch the video anytime on the WeoGeo Video page or see an archive of all the previous shows.

Next week’s guest is the one and only, Di-Ann Eisnor of Waze.

This Week’s Hangout:: HOT time in the old OSM tonight

We’ve got a special hangout this week (take this opporunity to start playing the YouTube video below while you read). Kate Chapman, Acting Executive Director at the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (H.O.T) joins us to talk about what HOT is, how it provides mapping services to humanitarian work around the world and how you can be involved. As always we go live tomorrow at 10am PDT on the WeoGeo Video page.

We’ll be talking on the IRC channel again so either show up to the Hangout page on WeoGeo or better yet, point your IRC client to #hwjf on