Saturday, February 13, 2016

Maps shaping up for 3.20

So, we're soon approaching the UI freeze for GNOME 3.20. It's looking quite good when it comes to OpenStreetMap editing in Maps (among other things).

But first I thought I was going to show-case another improvement, namely the expanded place bubbles (show information about places you search for on the map).

This is what a place bubble will look like in 3.20 when you first open it, only the most basic information is visible, the name of the place, what it is (conveyed by the icon) and the street address. However if you click the ”more information button” (the dots), more stuff is revealed. Thanks Jonas for this!

Now we also show a link to the place's official website (if one is tagged in OSM, ofcourse) and likewise for the phone number (theoretically the phone number should turn into a clickable tel: URI link if you have an app installed that has registered a mime handler for that, but I didn't find have one, neither Empathy, Ekiga, or Skype seems to do it).

These fields are also possible to edit on OSM now, and if you copy a tel: URL from i.e. a web page, it would automagicall reformat it into the raw telephone number. Also note that the title of the editing dialog has been adjusted to better communicate the fact the changes are actually uploaded to the public OpenSteetMap database, and not stored locally or something like that. This was after user feedback we got after showing an earlier iteration.

If you click on the ”Add to OpenStreetMap” context menu item when not currently being zoomed in (right now to any of the two most zoomed-in levels), you get this notification with the option to zoom in to an appropriate level, centered on the position where you clicked.

Here we can see the POI type selection dialog, and this shows the types using the Swedish translation, so it probably looks like yibberish for a lot :-), but the reason I showed this is two-fold, first it shows how we get readily-translated names by parsing the data used by the iD web-based editor (thanks to Ole Laursen for that suggestion, by the way). Secondly, it shows a usage for another feature, namely how you can search for a value if happen to know the OSM tag used for that.

As you can see in the screenshot above, the ”hostel” tag value gets expanded to the title using the translation. Also, beneeth the search entry you can see the list of recently used types, selecting one of these will immediatly select that type and go back to the editing mode.

Here's how it looks when adding a new place, also this dialog title was adjusted to better reflect that stuff is added to the public OpenStreetMap database.

Before I forget, I should also mention the awesome work done by our Outreach participants.
Amisha Singla has been working on support for printing routes (with instructions) and Hashem Nasarat working on support for loading cust geojson map layers.

So, there's quite a lot of new features here. To those who regularily claim that ”GNOME just removes features in every new release” I would mention that Maps has grown by probably around 5000 LoC just for the OSM editing functionallity.