Ordnance Survey maps the future of local data (Wired UK)


Ordnance Survey has released a series of mapping tools that will
allow developers and designers to plot and analyse detailed
pictures of the UK using the organisation’s open datasets.

OS Open Map – Local provides users with a customisable backdrop
onto which they can plot, visualise and understand data. OS Open
Names enables users to search for a particular location to an
accuracy of within one metre.

With OS Open Rivers it is possible to show the flow and location
of rivers, streams, lakes and canals across the entire UK.
Similarly, OS Open Roads is a connected network of all roads –
classified and unclassified — in the UK. Both tools can be used
for pinning and sharing information such as flood alerts or
accident hotspots.

Any of the OS datasets can be combined with other open datasets
to build interactive websites and create graphics for free with the
available tools. All Ordnance Survey asks for in return is
acknowledgement in accordance with theĀ Open Government Licence. It give several examples of how the
data can be used, such as recreating the UK in Minecraft.

The organisation’s acting director general and chief executive
Neil Ackroyd said that he was keen to see the new street level
product being used across mobile and online services and
applications. “It provides an unmatched level of detail at the
national level,” he said.

“At Ordnance Survey we believe that open data releases are best
supported by additional resources and we have explored ways to
improve and modify our licences and provide supporting initiatives
to aid further innovation,” Ackroyd added.

Founded in 1791, Ordnance Survey is the UK’s national mapping
agency and falls under the remit of the Department for Business,
Innovation and Skills. Business Minister Matthew Hancock said that
thanks to Ordnance Survey the UK had access to “world-beating data”
and expertise in mapping.

“I announced earlier this year that Ordnance Survey would move
to a Government Company to ensure that it could operate in an
increasingly agile and flexible manner in the fast changing
geospatial market, and today’s announcement goes hand in hand with
that change,” he said in a statement.

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24 March 2015 | 6:34 pm – Source: wired.co.uk


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