Notes: Can we do better. Experiences and Ideas from the Frontline.

Chris Fleming

Playlists: 'sotm2019' videos starting here / audio / related events

An analysis of Notes, based on local experience of managing notes.

Over 1 735 319 notes have been added to OSM, currently 416 224 notes are still open.

Even looking at a small area such as Edinburgh, the city I live in, we have around 10 new notes added every day.

It's interesting to note the motivation of people adding notes, many are added by regular experienced mappers for changes that need to happen in the future, some are added by local businesses or anonymous users altering us to problems on the map and some by non technical users for changes that are required.

These note encapsulate a few different categories:
Things that can be fixed quickly and the note closed straightaway.

We then have short to medium term notes, such as shops closing or road closures that may be for issues for between days and months.

Then finally then some of the very long term items, such as the construction of the Forth Crossing, New Hospitals or Housing Estates that may be tracking developments for years.

But with so many notes remaining open, issues can very easily be missed.

I will briefly review some of the tools available for tracking notes, and talk about how we deal with notes including some of our local tests with using github issues to track some of the longer term issues.

Finally as well as hopefully look at some ways of managing notes. Hopefully with some prototypes for ways that notes might be improved either directly on the OSM site or via an external site.