Community Wishlist Survey 2019/Maps/Maps Improvements: Vector Structure, Disputed Borders, Cleaner Style

Maps Improvements: Vector Structure, Disputed Borders, Cleaner Style

  • Problem: The development of the Wikimedia Maps should be continued. Main wishes are migration to vector tile structure and fix the international borders.
  • Who would benefit: All wikis including Wikipedia, Commons, Wikidata, Wikivoyage, etc.
  • Proposed solution:
  • More comments: Two issues very important for wikipedia maps


more tickets, not part of this proposal and older discussion

Removing this session from initial proposal

Minor wishes are the move of all controls to the left map side like nearby, full-screen, layers controls, adding an additional zoom-level control, several pushpin symbol improvements like usage of short strings, 3-digit numbers etc. A nearby map mode showing links to nearby articles should be added. Kartographer documentation should be improved. T155601, T145475, T147184, T141715, T141335, T140212, T140209, T140092, T140087, T140083, T180909. T208350

Here are some bugs that I consider a high priority:

  • Enable auto-positioned snapshot on Kartographer side (T158919)
  • Maps fast preview is broken on 2nd attempt (T151524)
  • Geoline/geoshape does not work with relations other than multipolygon/route/boundary (T156433)
  • Automatic zoom and positioning doesn't work for geomasks (T178370)
  • Remove map offset when quitting full screen mode (when screen > 1024px) (T161065)
  • Maps that contain Wikidata ids and are stored on Commons fail to display when called via <maplink> or <mapframe>(T155927)
  • Kartographer geoline service has low accuracy at high zoom levels (for long features) (T155919)
  • Ability to define a map legend (T154585)
  • Introduce global or per-wiki styles (T146343)
  • maps with "type": "ExternalData" have pointing hand mouse pointer over unclickable objects (T192613)
  • Should we use the marker cluster plugin with `<mapframe>` and `<maplink>` ? (T136455)
  • Customize map markers in Kartographer (T131618)
  • Kartographer full page view cuts off longer captions (T197735)
  • Support appropriate documentation of CC BY SA data on Commons (T200968)
  • Add a data-page-only wiki markup header to datasets (T155290)
  • Track Commons Dataset usage across wikis (what links here) (T153966)
  • Support Data namespace redirects (T153598)

The lack of support for redirects and what links here means that moving (or splitting) pages in the data namespace is liable to break stuff, with no way to know whether this has occurred – a really unacceptable situation for a repository that is supposed to be available across projects and languages. Gareth (talk) 23:45, 29 October 2018 (UTC)

In addition to T156433 and T155919 mentioned above by Gareth I'd like to highlight automatic zoom/centre issue (T187741). I think from end-users perspective these are significant deficiencies in the way OSM external data is currently handled. What else bugs me the most about external data support is that there is no way to check if reference to external data actually returns any external data, e.g. so that template/module could decide not to show map if nothing is returned for QID related to given page. (Maybe T155925 would be sufficient for the latter, or maybe it should be something more generic that also covers .map page external data.) --Pikne 09:54, 30 October 2018 (UTC)

Goog point by Pikne. It is hard to include maps in templates, or modules, whitout knowing if there is any external data. --Vriullop (talk) 10:45, 30 October 2018 (UTC)
I think T187741 is a duplicate of T158919. Gareth (talk) 23:04, 1 November 2018 (UTC)

I think this wish needs to be structured better. Perhaps the two "major" wishes (vector tiles and international borders) need to be their own wish, and "minor improvements" could be a second wish that people can vote for separately. Otherwise it is going to cause problems for the Community Tech team, who are not possibly going to be able to work through all the linked tasks, particularly if they don't have anyone experienced in mapping on their team. This, that and the other (talk) 10:54, 30 October 2018 (UTC)

I think that the wishlist should be kept monolithic until WMF acknowledges that the Maps works needs a proper allocation of work / team. Then in case we can split it --Sabas88 (talk) 11:32, 30 October 2018 (UTC)

Please consider also these, which were closed due to a lack of resources from WMF but are of interest

  • Use Wikidata international labels when OSM data is not available (T193198) (this is necessary also for OSM community)
  • Deploying new vector tiles to production (T156682) (this was practically ready to deploy)

--Sabas88 (talk) 11:38, 30 October 2018 (UTC)

@Naveenpf: Note that Community Wishlist proposals should be discrete tasks, while this proposal seems to be a catch-all for many many actually separate proposals. --AKlapper (WMF) (talk) 12:57, 30 October 2018 (UTC)

Hi naveenpf and all: I'm happy to see another Maps proposal this year, and I hope it's as successful as the Maps wish last year. As it's written, though, it's too big for a Wishlist proposal. This process determines what the Community Tech team works on next year, and they're going to investigate and address the top 10 wishes over the course of the year. A request for a year or two of Maps support is beyond what Community Tech can provide, and we don't have another team to do that work. This proposal will need to be trimmed down to a few main wishes, in order to move forward to the voting phase. Do you want to talk here about which requests are most important? -- DannyH (WMF) (talk) 21:56, 30 October 2018 (UTC)

Vector maps, internationalized maps, improval of docs sound great ideas. Gryllida 22:36, 30 October 2018 (UTC)

Judging by the No. 1 place of Kartographer improvements last year I think there probably would be enough support that splitting it into 2-3 proposals as suggested above that could all get enough support for the Top 10 would be possible Galobtter (talk) 08:17, 31 October 2018 (UTC)

Yes, I definitely would advise splitting into 3 of 4 chunks rather than "fix all da things" —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 10:36, 31 October 2018 (UTC)
Same here, splitting the proposal would be more practical approach. Capankajsmilyo (talk) 10:40, 31 October 2018 (UTC)

The style of this proposal is very much the same as last year's proposal (which wasn't split up). Even "It is very difficult to estimate the developing time. I think minimumly a year, better two years are needed." comes directly from that proposal (and, yes, it's clearly an unrealistic suggestion). Gareth (talk) 23:04, 1 November 2018 (UTC)

Unfortunately, that was a problem with last year's proposal that we don't want to repeat. :) Last year's proposal was very broad, and expectations were very high. The team delivered on several important changes this year, but there was still a sense that some people in the community were disappointed, because they assumed it was possible that a Wishlist proposal would result in a long-term, full-time Maps team. We want to be clear this year about what the team can deliver for one Wishlist proposal. You'll need to take the "minimum a year/two years" out of the proposal, and scale down (or split up) the requests in this proposal before it moves to the voting phase. -- DannyH (WMF) (talk) 15:23, 2 November 2018 (UTC)
Or maybe we/ WMF need to recognise the need for a full-time maps team, and start to look for grant- (or other) funding for such? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 12:25, 3 November 2018 (UTC)
+1 --Sabas88 (talk) 10:59, 4 November 2018 (UTC)

Hi Naveenpf and all, it's been about a week since I posted that someone needs to cut this proposal down, or split it up into separate proposals. Ideally, the proposal would have the top two or three problems that are most important to solve. There is a ticking clock here -- the proposal phase ends on November 11th, and if this proposal stays the way it is, we'll have to archive the proposal, and it won't move on to the voting phase. The note about the "minimum a year/two years" needs to be taken out, and the proposal needs to be clear about what you're asking for. With the bullet list of 17 tickets in the Discussion section, we'll have to make it clear that that's part of the discussion and not the actual proposal. I'm happy to talk more about how to edit the proposal; please ping me here if you have questions that I can help with. -- DannyH (WMF) (talk) 00:59, 8 November 2018 (UTC)

Can we have just two ? vector tile structure and fix the international borders. first one as far as I know development is over. Only testing and deployment is required. Can we have both of them ? --naveenpf (talk) 13:07, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
Naveenpf: Yes! Vector tile structure and fix the international borders would make a great proposal. -- DannyH (WMF) (talk) 20:47, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
@DannyH (WMF): And will this proposal be renamed to better reflect its hobbled status? Gareth (talk) 08:01, 14 November 2018 (UTC)
I created one with the OSM issues [1] --Sabas88 (talk) 15:33, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
I created another one about OSM external data issues (above one being about styles/i18n). Pikne 17:07, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I wanted to mention something for people who may not know the history behind the two main Phabricator wishes mentioned above, T153282 and  T113008. You wouldn't guess it from the titles, but one of the very cool results of doing those two tickets is that the styling of our maps will become much more sophisticated. The art of digital maps lies in knowing what to hide or show, abstract or provide in detail, at what level of magnification. If we put those tickets in place, dynamic wiki maps will look a lot cleaner and generally nicer. Plus the issue of clarifying disputed borders is quite important. —JMatazzoni (WMF) (talk) 21:38, 9 November 2018 (UTC)

I've created some proposals; please adopt these if you're interested, otherwise they'll be moved to the archive:

p.s. I think the revised "main wishes" proposal should be resubmitted with a more descriptive name and this proposal should be moved to the archive. Gareth (talk) 08:38, 10 November 2018 (UTC)

Is it in the cards to use background images that are actually useful as opposed to simply blank space? Google and Bing have contour levels and satellite images. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 08:31, 14 November 2018 (UTC)
  • Hi naveenpf. Voting starts this week so I took a stab at giving this wish a name that more accurately reflects its new focus. I hope that's OK. If you have a better name feel free. —JMatazzoni (WMF) (talk) 16:16, 14 November 2018 (UTC)
  • Fine !!! -- naveenpf (talk) 23:53, 14 November 2018 (UTC)

Proposal does not state a problem. --Traveler100 (talk) 14:41, 17 November 2018 (UTC)


  •   Support EneaSuper (talk) 13:46, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Galobtter (talk) 19:08, 16 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support SEMMENDINGER (talk) 19:24, 16 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support This, that and the other (talk) 01:09, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support The Grid (talk) 01:57, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support --Ranjithsiji (talk) 08:21, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Liuxinyu970226 (talk) 08:26, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Afernand74 (talk) 08:49, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Mujeebcpy (talk) 09:01, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Maps are used extensively since their development and it’s a shame that we have to do these repeated proposals to continue to improve them. stjn[ru] 09:15, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 10:14, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support ديفيد عادل وهبة خليل 2 (talk) 10:59, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Like tears in rain (talk) 12:35, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support DerFussi 14:10, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Naseweis520 (talk) 15:25, 17 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Sabas88 (talk) 08:54, 19 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   SupportTheDJ (talkcontribs) 13:48, 19 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support problem with disputed borders should be resolved as soon as possible. Tohaomg (talk) 20:40, 19 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Jmmuguerza (talk) 23:52, 19 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Rmikke (talk) 03:23, 20 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support --Abhinav619 (talk) 09:18, 20 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Strong support The disputed border issue should be taken up as a top priority. Sankoswal (talk) 13:50, 20 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support A very great proposal for improving maps on all Wikimedia projects. SshibumXZ (talk) 14:57, 20 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Novak Watchmen (talk) 01:27, 21 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Sturm (talk) 04:50, 21 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support kocio 21:26, 21 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Zorzo Mirco (talk) 09:30, 22 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Bubici (talk) 14:02, 22 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support MarcoMinghini (talk) 14:30, 22 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Jack who built the house (talk) 18:27, 22 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Spacearcangel (talk) 18:51, 22 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Serhio Magpie (talk) 03:31, 23 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Eluinie (talk) 08:59, 23 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support IM3847 (talk) 10:19, 23 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Subhashish Panigrahi (talk) 10:30, 23 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Manojk (talk) 11:32, 23 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Sannita - not just another sysop 00:33, 24 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Ultimograph5 (talk) 02:17, 24 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Old maps are a shame. Mecki.DtH (talk) 12:22, 24 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Sorcrosc (talk) 03:16, 25 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Disputed boundaries are a reality that affect numerous countries worldwide (China, India, Pakistan, Russia, Ukraine, Palestine, Israel, Cyprus..) and impact how maps can be legally used there. There is no single worldview that the whole world accepts and to maintain the NPOV in Wikimedia Maps and have it usable in these countries it is necessary to support all worldviews simultaneously which is only possible with vector map tiles --Planemad (talk) 09:11, 25 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support WhatamIdoing (talk) 02:17, 26 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support — AfroThundr (u · t · c) 02:22, 26 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support ARR8 (talk) 02:53, 26 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Kannan Talk 07:23, 26 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Ckoerner (talk) 16:34, 26 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Izno (talk) 01:05, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 11:14, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Zache (talk) 14:07, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Thgoiter (talk) 18:22, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support APh (talk) 11:33, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Abijithka (talk) 15:25, 29 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Nandukrishna_t_ajith (talk) 21:17, 29 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support -- Akhiljaxxn (talk) 17:07, 29 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support Disputed borders are a huge problem as we are very likely not to match NPOV. Situations when maps depict borders different from described in articles are very frustrating — NickK (talk) 15:48, 30 November 2018 (UTC)
  •   Support RolandUnger (talk) 16:34, 30 November 2018 (UTC)