Map Ransom

Freedom! Maps are Liberated!

Ransom Status Thermometer
Ransom raised: $1600.00+
Last updated: 08/28/06
(Started 08/27/06)

In under 24 hours the $1600 ransom was met! Thank you to all that donated or purchased DVD's. Over 56,000 maps are in the process of being liberated because of your generosity.

I am currently coordinating with the Internet Archive to get a few web pages together so people can find and download the maps. Internet Archive employees are busy people, so please be patient while we get things set up.


10/29/2006 - I've update the Libre Map Project website. It now lives at: DRG links have been updated to point to maps on the Internet Archive. Happy Downloading!

10/21/2006 - The maps are starting to become available on the Internet Archive. They are still working through some technical difficulties and not all data is available, but progress is being made. Here is the main page for the DRG collection. Keep in mind that this is not truly ready for public consumption. But for those of you chomping at the bit, it is a start.

10/09/2006 - I've been in ongoing commuinication with the Internet Archive in the past few days. They are now actively working on making the maps available. They are making steady progress and hopefully we'll have something to share with everyone soon.

09/18/2006 - I spoke with the Internet Archive today. Their time is currently consumed working on the September 11th archive. They hope to make the maps available in, "a few days to a week".

09/05/2006 - The hard drive full of maps arrived at the Internet Archive today. The maps have already been transferred to a temporary staging server. We hope to make them available for download with a very minimal web front-end soon.

08/31/2006 - The map hard drive should arrive at the Internet Archive on Tuesday (Monday is a holiday and the Internet Archive is unfortunately 3000 miles away.)

I spoke with the folks at the Internet Archive today to start coordinating how the data will be made available. This is the first collection of Maps for the Internet Archive, and I'm no geodata expert, so we have lots of details to work out. The plan is to provide a very basic web based front end as soon as possible. For those of you who are chomping at the bit to download maps, this quick solution will be for you.

The next step will be to make it easier for people to find and download specific maps. The Internet Archive is going to work on a simple interface which will integrate with the rest of their collections. Simultaneously, I will work on enhancing the Libre Map Project web site.

What am I talking about?

If you have just arrived at this page, and are wondering what this is all about, the original Ransom page is archived here.

What's next?

Once the maps are made available on the Internet Archive, anyone can download them for free. The maps are in the Public Domain so you can do whatever you'd like with them.

Those of you that have experience working with geodata and/or programming, please get in touch with me if you are intersted in using this dataset for a project. Email me: maps <at> redjar <dot> org

The maps are still in their original GeoTiff format and still have the borders or map collars.

I will be improving the Libre Map Project website over time to make it easier to find the map you are looking for.

What about liberating more data?

Many people have contacted me saything that they weren't able to donate before the ransom was met, while others have asked what data we should free next. Feel free to suggest hard to access, public domain data, and we may try liberate it in a similar fashion.

I'm hoping that the USGS and other government agencies will cooperate directly, making data available for the Internet Archive to preserve and make centrally available.

Isn't this data already available on the Internet?

Many DRG topo maps are available for download on the Internet. In fact, for the last 2.5 years, my site, the Libre Map Project, has been one of the more popular places to download them. However, there is no one central and stable repository of every DRG map. Because there are so many different web sites hosting bits and pieces of this data, it is often difficult to find, especially by novices who are just looking for a few maps. In addition, we hope to not just make the latest maps available, but to archive maps so each revision can be used for historical research.

Think of it like Wikipedia. Almost all the information on Wikipedia can be found elsewhere on the Internet. However, by centralizing and releasing it under a clear license, it becomes easier to find and use. It also allows people to more easily come together and contribute their knowledge and expertise.

By centralizing these maps, and hopefully other geodata, we hope to make it easier to access. We also hope that others will join our efforts by contributing more data and create applications that utilize it.

Map Liberators

Thank You to all the Map Liberators! Universal Access to All Human Knowledge is within reach. Once the maps are posted on the Internet Archive, all Map Liberator names will be posted there as well. You should all have warm fuzzies knowing your name will always be remembered as someone who supported the Freedom of Information.

The people who made this happen:

Questions? Email: maps <at> redjar <dot> org