Today’s release of some Ordnance Survey mapping data, which has been made available for free re-use by the government, shies away from one major factor that could yet stymie the entire process - a public sector licensing agreement won’t be drawn up until April 2011. As outlined in the government’s ‘impact assessment’ paper on …
You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
In your article, you seem to believe that because the OS Free Data does not have a holistic Public Sector deal this somehow means that it's lacking for the man-on-the-street. However, it will only really effect the Public Sector, and most of the Public Sector is already covered by agreements - the real problem is that they are seperate agreements, and that sharing data between them can be confusing, as you don't know what each agreement allows unless you plow through reams of legal speak.
The OpenData offering actually looks pretty good - for what it is. No strings attached, no real restrictions and quite a wide range of datasets. Yes, it's missing address level information but then no one really expected that to get included anyway. Yes, it doesn't have 25k and 50k raster products, but those would be hard to include without destroying any market for Landranger and Explorer maps - maps which any walker or rambler takes with them whenever they go out.
Now - if only they could keep the website up for more than 10 mins...
Time was, you could be executed for less
Does the Queen know that el Reg has downgraded her from HM to a mere HRH?
I would so buy a sat nav with the OS label
Come on one of you in Southampton must speak Mandrin, get on the phone and order some off-the-shelf cheap as chips sat navs, bung your logo on the side and multiply by 300!
Don't waste your time trying to come up with your own design, or even use your own maps, we all know you'll talk about it for years and nothing will happen as a couple of old soaks twiddle around the edges, their beer belly's ever increasing diameter hindering real work.
Come to think of it I so would not buy anything with the OS logo on it, over priced imported crap!
Looking a gift horse in the mouth
What exactly are the "thorny questions" about what developers can do with the data? The licence seems pretty clear (equivalent to CC 'attribution only') and explicitly allows commercial use.
What, though, is all this rubbish about Public Sector agreements? How much does the Government waste on buying things from itself?