mapping is terrorist activity

Get ready to be followed and spied upon for creating a free map.

Superintendent Brett Lovegrove Head of Counter Terrorism for the City of London Police at the “Project Griffin Conference” in Edinburgh, talked about “hostile reconnaissance” to help spot potential targets:

“This means noticing people who suddenly start appearing at a café and perhaps draw maps of the surrounding area.

Understandably, this is bad news, as we love going to cafes and making maps! Here’s a photo of us at a Starbucks during Leeds OpenStreetMap mapping weekend:

Terrorists at Leeds Mapping Party
image copyright kevin whitworth

Kyle Gordon from Openstreetmap has penned an open email in response to Lovegrove’s advice.

We are in danger of being arrested and unfairly held for a 4 weeks (possibly 6 or 7…) under anti-terrorism laws, just by doing our hobby

tip: stop webrick script/server (address already in use)

Quick tip of the day.

Somehow you’ve got out of the script/server console (ctrl-Z instead of ctrl-C perhaps), but the server is still running, as you get this message if you try to start a new one
“TCPServer Error: Address already in use – bind(2)”

type “jobs” and you will see it there. (should be number 1)

type “fg 1” to bring the  server back and then if you want, ctrl-C to quit it

just doing it up north

NorthPack was launched yesterday at Leeds geekup last night, the monthly gathering, with talks, beer etc, made by the NorthCrew, who also do the NorthCast, a podcast for the north. I think its a great idea, and am 100% behind them.

NorthPack is an ambitious project which aims to unite web related professionals based in the North of England and shine a spotlight on the Northern community, providing a showcase for talent and the great work that goes on “up North”.

Good to see some people just going out there and doing it.

josm usertools plugin

Just developed a plugin for JOSM, the OpenStreetMap editor to help work with authors/ users. Has some basic functionality at the moment, but will get more stuff, especially as more of osm work is quality control, and networking with nearby users.

usertools josm plugin

It has three actions, at the moment, 1)Opens up the built-in author panel, if it isn’t already visible 2) Open browser showing the user profile page for the selected user. 3) From all the map data in josm, just select all the data that belongs to the selected user. Also on the list is to improve the way it searchs and selects by user (it is quite dumb in the way it does it at the moment), so if there was a load of fish and chip shops tagged with chippy=yes, then these would also be selected if you asked it to search for the user called “chippy”.