OpenStreetMap data is open and available to anyone who would like to access it. However, there may be times when you want to use OSM to collect data, but you would like to keep some attributes stored in a private database. For this purpose, HOT has developed a tool for JOSM known as the Separate Data Store. The SDS allows you to create maps and add data into JOSM the same as always, but when you upload your edits, public data is saved to the OSM database and private data is saved separately to your private data server.
This module is designed for people who desire to store private geospatial information, such as household income, personal health care data or the location of gold mines.
For liability reasons, HOT does not provide the SDS service itself, but the software is available for installation on a private server. In this module we will utilise the SDS development server to demonstrate its functionality.
If you are interested to set up your own SDS server, please contact us (team.id[at]hotosm.org).
This plug-in allows private data to be diverted into the private data store, rather than being saved in the OSM database. A recent version of JOSM is required for the SDS plugin to run. (If you do not have a recent version of JOSM, download and install it from http://josm.openstreetmap.de/.).
Editing the map works just the same as before. The only difference is that when you upload changes, some tags will be automatically saved on the private datastore, and the rest will be saved directly onto OSM.
After installing the plugin, you need to edit the settings so that private data is directed to the correct SDS server. In this module we will use a demo version of the SDS, but you may also configure the plugin to save private data on your custom SDS server.
- SDS username: firstname.lastname@example.org
- SDS password: CyYi3VeuHk
How does the plugin know which data you want to store on OSM and which data you want to store publicly? Quite simply, it knows because of the tags. Normal tags go to OSM as always, but you can use tags with a special prefix that will be sent to the private datastore.
By default, any tag that has the prefix hot: will go to the private datastore. This can be changed in the SDS preferences menu:
When you create or edit an object on the map, you can apply tags like this:
In this case, the first two tags will be saved on OSM. The third tag, because it has the prefix hot:, will be saved on the private datastore.
You will most likely collaborate with others when using a private datastore, so you will have a standard list of tags to use for the specific data you are collecting. These tags can then be made into a presets menu, which will provide an easy-to-use form for adding both public and private data.
You can access the SDS online with your username and password. To visit the example SDS, open your browser and go to http://sds.dev.hotosm.org/.
There are two types of SDS users. Admin users can add new projects or users onto the SDS. Personal users are regular users who are part of a project team which is using the SDS.
Our sample account is a personal account, not an admin, but we can see the online platform where our private data is kept.
Let’s see what the private data looks like online.
We can see all the information about this object, both the public attributes from OSM and the private attributes kept in the SDS.
The steps are exactly the same as uploading changes to OSM. The only difference is that tags with the prefix you select (such as hot:) will be diverted to a private datastore.
There is no limit for user accounts. When you set up your own SDS, you will have an Admin account and can add as many users as you need.
A lot! Basically this depends on the size of your server.