This is not an April Fools Joke

Not a normal day in this office then…

A very important day in the history of Ordnance Survey, from later on today it really will be possible to download free OS geodata from www.data.gov.uk, and www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/opendata. This is close to the “Goldilocks” option presented in the recent consultation and contains “mid scales” datasets which are detailed here in the official government response to the consultation.

Importantly this data is usable without restriction and therefore removes the issue of derived data.

Large scale data remains fully commercial and licensed conventionally, although we are promised a solution to the derived data problem for this data in the near future.

This is a massive step forward for the use of geospatial information in the UK, and although as a compromise it will leave some people disappointed, it will meet the needs of many people who have not had access to OS mapping before.

This has been a traumatic experience for Ordnance Survey, and I can only imagine the internal crisis this decision must have caused, but as it is often said, a crisis is the opportunity to push through the necessary changes that were too difficult during stable times.

Just in case you missed it, the 3D streetview is an April Fools Joke !

Written and submitted from The Residence Inn, Palo Alto (37.392N, 122.095W)

9 comments

  1. James C

    Ed – never took you for a fan of Milton Friedman (or is ‘that’ the April fool!)! Back to the matter at hand….we had our OpenData Express Service up at midnight for those wanting extracts rather than the whole 9 yards (www.free-os-maps.com). Think of it as a convenience store not a wholesaler….

  2. David

    “Dear Developers,
    Due to increased demand on the OS OpenData web site, we have experienced a problem with our servers which is affecting several Ordnance Survey services, including OS OpenSpace.”

    That’ll be why then…

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