I think I’ve recovered from my four day weekend and I’m back in the swing of things. I spent the holiday playing around with MapQuest’s new bike route API to create this bike route application. It works in all of North America (yes, including Mexico and Canada) and Europe and even crosses national boundaries. It doesn’t work in Asia or Australia.
MapQuest’s API uses OpenStreetMap (OSM) data on streets and bike routes. What I’ve discovered: This tool is an excellent way to test the accuracy of OSM data — it routed Ted in Flagstaff the wrong way down a one way street. A bike bridge I use daily in Menlo Park isn’t marked for bicycle access.
So early Monday morning I fixed those issues and couple of others by editing the OSM map source myself. The changes should make it to MapQuest in a couple of days. Google bike directions are cool, but you’re limited to the United States and (soon) a few Canadian cities, and you don’t have direct access to the map database.
Bicycle News, blogs and links
San Jose, CA to abandon bicycle license program:
But with an estimated 22,000 bicycles sold each year in San Jose, the city in the 2008-2009 budget year collected just $636 in bike license fees. The auditors surveyed two fire stations, where the licenses are distributed, and found that only nine licenses had been issued that year. And although police were supposed to establish a license database where the information could be accessed to aid in recovering stolen bikes, they had not done so.
Helmet cam study shows motorists at fault in majority of bicycle accidents, contrary to the usual statistics showing the cyclist at fault. Via.
New York City now thinking about bike share.
MAKE Magazine’s 2010 holiday gift guide for bike nerds.
Bike lane observations in San Francisco.
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