Facebook OpenStreetMap Engineering with Saurav Mohapatra and Jacob Wasserman

Facebook applications use maps for showing users where to go. These maps can display businesses, roads, and event locations. Understanding the geographical world is also important for performing search queries that take into account a user’s location. For all of these different purposes, Facebook needs up-to-date, reliable mapping data.

OpenStreetMap is an open system for accessing mapping data. Anyone can use OpenStreetMap to add maps to their application. The data in OpenStreetMap is crowdsourced by users who submit updates to the OpenStreetMap database. Since anyone can submit data to OpenStreetMap, there is a potential for bad data to appear in the system.

Facebook uses OpenStreetMap for its mapping data, including for important applications where bad data would impact a map user in a meaningfully negative way. In order to avoid this, Facebook builds infrastructure tools to improve the quality of its maps. Saurav Mohapatra and Jacob Wasserman work at Facebook on its mapping infrastructure, and join the show to talk about the tooling Facebook has built around OpenStreetMap data.

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Transcript

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