Monday, September 29, 2014

Using photo geotags to document bicycle infrastructure issues

Much of what is said about the geo tags in photos relates to privacy and concerns how to turn off the feature in mobile-based cameras.  However, judicious use of this tool can leverage the power of mapping and crowd-sourcing to to identify patterns and document issues.
Keeping track of trail deterioration can be challenging, but the ease of taking a photo combined with geotags could simplify the process.

For example, on my commute this morning, I took two photos.  The first to attempt to capture the beauty of the swath of cosmos flowers gracing the Antelope trail in the morning sun, the second to note how the concrete west of the Holdrege pedestrian bridge is sinking and cracking.

If you click on "Photo Details," the photo metadata will be displayed along with the location data. You can see how a large collection, documented by many riders, could help give a much improved understanding of bicycle infrastructure issues.  Additionally, taking pictures where negative car/bike interactions occur could also lend insight to where outreach or infrastructure changes may need to be done.


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