Future of location services on OM

Stefan Schmidt stefan at openmoko.org
Mon Jan 12 20:06:16 CET 2009


On Mon, 2009-01-12 at 16:03, Mat Real wrote:
> I am responsible for the openBmap website: http://www.openbmap.org
> At this time, only cellular networks are concerned.
> All the software code is AGPL v3 and data are Creative Commons License
> (creative commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported)

CC for the data is good. A problem is the attribution part. I think it is vital
to give credit to contributors. The problem with this part of CC and big data
collection is that you have to mention _every_ contributor, that can give you a
real nightmare when suing the data. OSM is running into the same problem these
days. Just to make you aware of a potential problem. Something like including a
link to a list of contributors does sadly not work.

> This site is quite similar to the opencellid.org website
> (and I am currently merging the opencellid data into the openbmap database)

So you get the confirmation that the opencellid data is also under cc-at-sa?
We did not found a concrete statement about it and Daniel already sent them a
mail to clarify it.

Do you merge not only the data but also the projects? Having them co-exists with
the same goal is kinda pointless.

> For each cell zone, I generate a kml file. This is nice to see how cells
> enveloppe and
> how coordinates have been generated.
> http://realtimeblog.free.fr/cell_map.php?mcc=208&mnc=1&lac=1024&cellid=55608&display=Display

The maps looks already quite nice, even if germany is not in the db yet. ;)

> 2) the openBmap database contains much more information than opencellid
> one.(for raw data
> and for processed zone data)
> We are keeping track of all attributes available such as:
> *** gsm signal strength
> *** quality of gps received
> ...
> These attributes are not available in opencellid database. From these
> "extra" datas,
> we can for example decide to use only gps data of correct quality (with low
> vdop, hdop, hdop)

I like to have more data available. Can you give us some insight how big such
collections can grow. For example your current db size and the current number of
entries? I would like to have the option to have such a db on my SD card for
offline use and syncing when on wifi or similar.

> On our side, we plan to introduce an offline mcc/mnc/lac/cid->gps database.
> but at this time, only one api is available at
> http://realtimeblog.free.fr/api/getGPSfromGSM.html
> What is interesting with this api is that if the cell is not in the
> database, it returns
> the lac position and the max radius of the lac
> For your information I have implemented a reverse geocoding in the Mapping
> Manager
> in order to get the name of the city where the cell coordinates points at.

Sounds cool.

> About openBmap client side, as you can see on the web site, a windows mobile
> version
> is available. It logs mcc/mnc/lac/cid/signal strength and gps data.
> The openmoko version is almost ready !


How does it get the gsm and gps data? I hope from the FSO framework!

We still have some more ideas around location on our agenda. And location from
GSM/Wifi/etc is a nice part of it. Would be great to have some more devs here.
If anybody is interested let us know. Hopefully in february we should be again
in a modus where we like to test out new things to refresh us from a new

> The gsm/gps capture is ready and I guess it will be soon out.
> The developer in charge will post soon on this thread.


Stefan Schmidt

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