Overture Maps Foundation is building the future of digital mapping

Marc Prioleau spent a majority of his career in digital mapping. He now runs Overture Maps Foundation, an open source project funded by Meta, Amazon Web Services, TomTom & Microsoft.

Overture Maps Foundation is building the future of digital mapping

Marc Prioleau has spent a majority of his career in the digital mapping arena. He recently left Meta to take the helm of the Overture Maps Foundation, a newly created non-profit, open source project supported by Meta, Amazon Web Services, Tom Tom & Microsoft and the Linux Foundation. Its objective is to provide data infrastructure and standards for next-generation mapping products and services, including 3D mapping.

You may ask, does the world need another open-source mapping project? Prioleau explains why it does. And Microsoft, Meta, AWS and the other founding members of Overture obviously agree. They came together to create a shared data infrastructure that will expedite and reduce the cost of developing new mapping services.

The Overture Maps Foundation aims to provide foundational map data to companies that need it but don't want to recreate the basic data layers themselves. By collaborating and sharing data, Overture seeks to avoid duplication of industry efforts and allow businesses, governments, and organizations to concentrate on developing unique and value-added data layers and applications.

What is Overture Maps Foundation? 00:02

The Overture Maps Foundation is a new organization started within the Linux Foundation, aimed at open map data. It focuses on meeting the evolving market needs and improving map data quality. The foundation caters to individuals and organizations building map services, whether they are commercial entities, government entities, or NGOs.

Marc Prioleau's Background in Mapping 00:19

Marc Prioleau, the executive director of the Overture Maps Foundation, has a long history in digital mapping. He has worked in the GPS and mapping space for over 20 years, starting with Trimble Navigation and later joining Telcontar (DeCarta), Uber, Mapbox and Meta. An area of expertise is developing large volume mapping applications and working with companies to improve their mapping services.

The Need for Overture Maps Foundation 02:41

Overture Maps Foundation arose out of a recognition of the increasing demands of map data. As mapping applications have evolved, the requirements for data, including attributes, refresh rates and spatial accuracy, have continuously grown. To keep up, the foundation is focusing on providing open map data to enable companies to build richer and more differentiated mapping services.

Changing World and Data 14:08

The physical world is constantly changing, and data plays a crucial role in keeping up with these changes. Different industries and sectors require specific data to meet their unique needs. Companies, businesses, and governments utilize data to make decisions and build upon existing data layers.

Collaboration and Open Source 14:32

Collaboration and open-source initiatives have proven to be valuable in enhancing data quality, efficiency and resource allocation. Open data, combined with other data sources, becomes even more powerful. Removing barriers and sharing resources will lead to collective improvement and more innovative applications.

Utilizing Ambient Data for Map Building 23:18

Overture is exploring use of ambient data to enhance its map building capabilities. These sources include GPS traces, imagery, computer vision, and other signals. AI technology, such as computer vision, can extract valuable map data from imagery. Additionally, signals like smartphone movement data and other unique sources can contribute to accurate and up-to-date maps.

Indoor location challenges 28:36

Indoor location, particularly in multi-story buildings has been challenging to accurately map. It has been difficult to pinpoint the the correct floor level of a location or activity. Visual positioning systems are being explored as a solution.

Overture's data schema and stable identifiers 30:16

Overture focuses on establishing a data schema for mapping services and creating stable identifiers for map features. The data schema provides a standardized structure and organization for data delivery. Stable identifiers allow attaching data from different sources to specific map features, such as buildings or road segments. These developments aim to improve the accuracy and interoperability of map data.

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AI disclosure: The image and video summary were AI generated, with some human editorial intervention. Marc, Greg & Mike are the real deal in the video.