We’re looking at new ways to find out how and where OpenStreetMap needs improvement. The collaborative mapping project that provides the street data in our world map MapBox Streets
is remarkably complete, as well as open and free, but it is continually unfinished as roads are built and borders changed.
One of the tools we’ve been using is simply an overlay of social checkins on the map. Often city centers are well mapped, but completeness falls off quickly from the center and there’s still a lot of population and activity in the outskirts.
Of course social network activity isn’t an absolute indicator of where general populations are or what areas important to map, but it’s a useful heuristic - and one that can be derived on a global level.