mashup the whole space

The UK Geospatial Mash-up event was really about the mashup of an industry, rather than building It seemed like the whole spectrum of commercial mapping services, web 2.0 companies, government users, public interest groups, hackers, etc were represented, and with the focus on a single nation, the discussion (ie heckling) quickly honed in on the key issues of GeoData — how to acquire, distribute, license, utilize in a way that is fair, free, efficient, democratic, timely. I’d like to see more national and regional focused geospatial events.

Many people pointed out that there’s nothing particularly new about the mashup concept of combining components in another fashion (and with luck the word mashup will start to dry up now). The new fluidity of data is what’s important, leading to a Geospatial industry in a very unstable state. So, you get the OS announcing a non-commercial, slippy map API for their Explorer Series (excellent news for countryside applications), admitting that it screen scrapes to geocode postcodes, and infringes a commercial service, and a commercial company using OpenStreetMap. What’s next?

One thing, seemed like no one could really defend the state of the postcode and address database in the UK. Contrary to the OS, the Royal Mail can’t really defend it’s licensing as cost recoup, since the point of their postcode system is to deliver mail, not to supply data. So I expect Free the Postcode to ramp up, especially with the entire New Popular Edition enlisted to help.

My presentation slides are here. As usual, I learned of a couple new GeoRSS feeds on the day, from (which uses “featuretypetag”!) and Weather Feeds from the BBC.

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