Ordnance Survey Thoughts

The return of the edge video..

Whilst hunting through YouTube for a video to use in a presentation, I came across this video.


If I remember rightly this was the first time a viral video was produced by any part of the UK government, I might be mistaken on that,  but the video was not met with universal acclaim in Southampton..

Shame a great video and a pretty good product – paper maps without edges…

Nice to see that the OS has a YouTube channel now, there are some classics there..

Written and submitted from the Google Office, London.

One reply on “The return of the edge video..”

OS Boundary data to be set free!

Michael Cross The Guardian, Thursday 23 April 2009

The government has kicked into touch a decision on the future of its largest state-owned digital information business. The Communities and Local Government department will today announce that the Ordnance Survey must make more of its data available to re-users – while apparently grooming part of the agency for future privatisation.

The new business strategy, published the day after the budget, follows a review by the Treasury’s Shareholder Executive. The headline finding is that “a model where a user pays a licence fee for OS data continues to be the most effective way of balancing the need to increase the availability of geographic information to the wider UK economy and society while maintaining the quality of OS data”.

But in a concession long called for by the Free Our Data campaign and others, boundaries information will be available for free as part of an extended “OS OpenSpace” service. Also available will be some OS products “from 1:10,000 scale through to 1:1 million scale”. The MasterMap database will remain proprietary.

Intriguingly, the strategy proposes a “wholly owned subsidiary company” to “further OS’s ability to offer new and innovative services to government, business and individual customers alike”. It will license OS data on the same terms as any commercial rival. The new subsidiary is “part of the drive to ensure that OS is sustainable for the medium term and value is generated for the taxpayer”.

The use of “medium term” seems to imply the “innovative trading entity” is set up with an eye to privatisation – although that is “absolutely not” the intention, says Iain Wright, shareholder minister for OS.

Wright says he understands the free data argument and that “for low level users, community or voluntary based, it is reasonable that data should be free. But if something happens on the scale of a potential Google in the UK, it’s right that some benefit flows to the taxpayer.”

Add a comment?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.