Monthly Archives: April 2012

Are Maps Really Commodities?

com-mod-i-ty: noun: a mass produced unspecialized product

During the cocktail hour at last week’s Where 2012 conference I had a conversation that I hear a lot these days:  Maps are just a commodity now. Google’s move to charge for maps has sparked an well publicized exodus to mapping alternatives; many, but not all based on OpenStreetMap. The statement always bothers me…granted there are many open source alternatives out there now, but has it really gotten that easy, that reproducible, that “unspecialized” that it can be bought and sold with the same lack of differentiation as wheat futures and pork bellies? Continue reading Are Maps Really Commodities?