Civic Technology/Give Directions

Having your community accurately represented on digital maps and geographic guides is very important. By ensuring your community is well marked, one can help reduce the number of people who are lost in your community, as well as make it easier for people to conduct business.

OpenStreetMap edit

OpenStreetMap (OSM for short) is a freely available, open source map of the world which anyone can edit, just like Wikibooks or Wikipedia. Behind the scenes, many programs use OpenStreetMap to provide directions and other information to their users. Here are just a few ways OpenStreetMap data is often silently used by common applications.

  • Giving Directions to travelers, delivery drivers, and general motorists.
  • Assisting visually impaired people by applications that use OSM to note sidewalk info.

The OpenStreetMap community maintains their own beginners' guide.

Wikivoyage edit

The Wikivoyage website.

While basic maps are well and good, they don't offer further context of a location to a visitor. That's where Wikibooks and Wikipedia sister project Wikivoyage comes into play.

Wikivoyage is a travel guide that assists tourists in their journeys. Even if your city isn't a tourist hotspot, it may well lie on someone's journey, so it's worthwhile to improve local articles there. This helps tourists find local businesses, events, and other amenities to spend their time and money while visiting. Assisting tourists to have the best experience your community offers is mutually beneficial for both the community and the traveler.

If you want to act as a guide, you can become a docent on Wikivoyage as well.

Wikivoyage maintains a beginners guide with their plunge forward page. Editing Wikivoyage articles is easy, and many articles can be easily improved with a graphical listing editor.