The iD editor for OpenStreetMap has reached an alpha2 release, with bug fixes, new features, and improvements to performance and usability.

You can try the alpha2 release now, as well as the the latest development version thanks to OpenStreetMap US.

Live By Default

iD now displays and edits live, official OpenStreetMap data by default. In previous releases, we’ve relied on the development server for a safe sandbox for iD, but the editor is now stable enough to be trusted with real data, and the iD team uses it as a daily editor.

This also means that you don’t need a dev server account - your default OSM account will work on the iD testing instance.

Now Available in 日本語!

iD is now available in English, Latvian, Turkish, Spanish, Japanese, German, and French!

This is all thanks to people who graciously put in the time and energy to contribute translations: Satoshi, Martin, Iván, Christian, m0rix, LuisGC, Martins Brunenieks, Alper, and others. Thanks!

Want to help translate iD? We now have a translator’s guide and a very simple system for handling translations.

Performance

We’ve been constantly focused on making iD fast in every way possible, whether through smart architectural choices, like Ansis’s usage of RTrees for labeling, or micro optimizations that ensure iD’s ‘hot’ functions are incredibly fast. We’ve also started profiling iD in Firefox and paying attention to reducing repaints and reflows wherever possible.

Design Improvements

We’ve tweaked road styles to make them more visible, consistent, and beautiful.

The radial menu that was introduced in alpha1 is now a semi-circle so it stays out of the way of the mouse.

Multiple Selections

iD now supports selecting multiple features, so you can quickly remove many points or ways. Holding down shift, clicking, and dragging now produces a ‘lasso’ tool for multiple selections that should be familiar to those who have used vector graphics editors like Illustrator.

This also enabled us to add more operations to iD: you can select multiple items and merge them into one, or delete multiple things at once.

Region-Specific Layers

iD now provides region-specific layers that automatically update as you move the map to different locations. For instance, when editing in the US, you’ll have access to US Census TIGER layers, but if you pan over to London, you can reference Ordinance Survey Open Data layers.

This functionality is thanks to Potlatch 2’s excellent layer resources, which we’re converting to JSON and using in iD.

Usability Improvements

Some of the biggest changes to iD are very subtle usability improvements. You can now connect lines by dragging the end of one onto another - an incredibly useful tweak that addresses the common case in OSM data of data that is poorly connected.

Dragging points and lines to the edges of the map causes the map to scroll, so you don’t have to ‘drop’ the point and scroll the map manually.

Click events now have more tolerance so drawing lines is radically faster and less error-prone.

Recovering Changes

Sometimes you can’t finish your edits in one session and need to close the browser window. iD now uses localStorage to save intermediate work, and offers to recover changes when you load the page again.



Devlogging work on the OpenStreetMap project by the MapBox team.

Much of this work is currently focused on improvements to OpenStreetMap funded by the Knight Foundation

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