Regarding 'Capturing' sideways instead of roads

Hello All,

I started contributing to Mapillary few months back.
I am currently mapping in Pune city, Maharashtra state.

I observed that some users have done mapping but they have captured images of sideways of roads or images of building but no images of actual road. Example = Mapillary

How can we inform/educate respective users to map the actual road?

Thanks & Regards,

Welcome Amey

You can write a comment on any images and the user will be notified about your comment.

If the road or side is best to capture may be a subject of debate. Some times it is just a subject of what is practical. Personally I often shoot both forward to the sides. There is also no requirement of pointing the camera forward.

I think it is ok to request pictures from users, if you need forward facing images for e.g. OSM work. But everybody are ultimately free to capture in any direction.

Kind regards,

PS. I really like when you get into the small roads, perhaps because I like seeing how towns are when you get away from the main roads. Keep the images flowing :slight_smile:

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Hello Tryl,

I agree on that.

Practical problem I observe is, in India when trying to use Mapillary app to locate destination & if we just see 1 side of the road it becomes difficult specially when passing over flyover or a busy street. If we capture the road which is 2x2 lane it almost captures everything 1 needs to reach destination. Another thing it’s better to capture in morning else HUGE traffic is around which causes problem. :slight_smile:

We have busy & large crossings in big cities and if the user is capturing surroundings we can not judge which part he is capturing due to distance. And we can not exactly get the direction. I hope you got my point :smiley:

I am promoting Mapillary app among my friends in Pune city.
Pune is 3rd or may be 4th largest/famous city in India for IT sector.
Along with Mapillary, I demonstrate users how they can tag places in openstreetmaps.

I use interesting methods to promote Mapillary say, in early morning they can take a walk & at same time Capture using Mapillary = Health benefit too. :wink:

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Hi Amy,

The sequence you link to, shows a good use-case for sideways photography. It looks like these photos were taken from a bus.

When being a passenger on a bus, it is often not realistic to take forward facing photos. And in that situation it’s better to take photos sideways, then to take no photos at all!

Apart from that, sideway photos capture store fronts, which helps putting businesses on OpenStreetMap. This information of often difficult to extract from forward photos.

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Hi @abhyankar and good points by @pbb.
Whilst normally you would shoot forwards, on larger roads or where previous Mapillary users have already shot forward. I am just uploading 2.5 hours of driving in Asia and had I shot forward, all you would have seen was 6 lanes of traffic and a container truck just in front of us Shooting from a side window, allowed thousands of buildings and businesses to be mapped.

My random rules are

  1. Always shoot forwards unless…
  2. The road has already been filmed forwards
  3. The road is a highway, predominantly straight and uninteresting
  4. You have the ability to shoot from a side angle where you can’t from the front

Keep up the great work

I shoot at 45° front-side of road most of the time. Using my action camera which has a very wide field of view, I still get to see a decent amount of the front view. Anyway, I find most interesting things are on the side of the road.

Thanks everybody for your inputs/suggestions/comments.

My conclusion is, there is no specific set of rules that user should set/follow while ‘Capturing’.
For example, I notice a user in Muscat [Oman] fixed camera at rare glass of car resulting reverse ‘Capture’. I don’t no how this ‘Capture’ will be useful for future lets say for humanitarian aid.

In under developed countries in Asia as we all know, we can experience unpleasant scenes for example large garbage, or kids sitting at roadside for etc in morning hours, pigs sleeping around garbage.

With this regard, I think we should avoid capturing road side images in city area specific to areas for example ‘slum area’ with small lanes or small roads with above scenario’s.

Mapillary can hide faces of human body detected in respective image but not other parts of body as per my understanding/observation. :slight_smile:


Hi Amey

If it is up to me, everybody would capture everything i 360 degrees, including garbage, poverty, open sewers, sound smell and everything. I also knows that is not possible and investing in a 360 degree camera just for mapillary is not possible for many people.

The reason I would like to see all these nasty things (and good things) is, that I like to see how people live. In some places garbage disposal is not working well and in regular slum areas most things does not work. Those problems does not go away because we do not photograph them - but photographing them may help them go away. If we only show what pleases us, all the unplessent issues are left alone.

Mapillary have a automatic blurring and it works some times. When I look at pictures to fix the blurring mistakes, I often see peoples faces. Even when walking around in a poor cuntry, the road is made of dirt, houses made of essentially garbage materials, but when I see their faces, they look happy! If they have a pig, who cares if it eats of a garbage pile. They have a pig!

The only thing that would prevent me from walking through a slum area with a 360 degree camera, would be safety and the fact that I have small kids and cannot travel right now. But I love pictures from such places!

And just at tip from me, @abhyankar: A lot of your images a blurry from a shaking camera. That often happens to me when I walk (as you do) and have the app on auto. The problem is that walking is not fluent and some times there is a lot of shaking, that may be too much even when there is plenty of light. A hole in the road is alsmost certain a shaked image.
I have started to use the manual mode when I walk. When there is enough light I can walk as normal and just take a picture when I am not putting a foot down. If there is not so much light I may stop every 10-20 meters and take a picture.

@tryl = Camera shakes because the road condition. The area where I capture is hilly, sometimes dusty & unpaved :smiley: Sometimes I ‘Capture’ as pedestrian, sometimes on bicycle. Few times via motorcycle.

Regarding camera = I use LYF Water 2 phone. I am now trying with various 'Time threshold’s & ‘Image min delay’ for better images. I tried to use Moto G4 Plus which has better camera but it has bad GPS. Alcatel IDOL 4s for Windows 10 has superb camera & GPS but I am unable to put Windows 8 which supports Mapillary.

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