If you use the OpenStreetMap (OSM) tiled maps you have probably noticed that most of the time now it doesn't work. That's because OSM have put increased restrictions on external access to their tile servers.
So for the next Templot update I have added the Thunderforest version of OSM:
Thunderforest allow free hobby access to their tile server up to a total of 150,000 tiles per month (which users of Templot are unlikely to exceed):
Their maps are available in several different styles -- for Templot I have chosen the 3 most useful for track planning. The "Pioneer" map is a rather silly idea of trying to make the OSM map look like an historic railroad map. However it does have the advantage of showing railway tracks much more clearly, and buildings are shown in 2-D outline and not a mock 3-D effect.
If you have a widescreen monitor it is probably more convenient to use the screenshot maps
rather than the tiled maps
. But on a small screen the tiled maps allow you to start small and build up a large map to any size by adding rows and columns of tiles. The crop/combine
function can be used to create a single final background map if desired.
The snag is that we are still waiting for NLS to offer a subscription API to their historic 25" maps, so for the tiled maps at present the only option is OSM. Which is better than nothing if you want a scaled map of a location with the position of structures, buildings, bridges, etc. But the actual track layouts leave a lot to be desired, although you can of course edit them yourself on OSM from aerial images if needed. (It might take a day or two for Thunderforest to update with your edits.)
This is a bit of Gloucester in the Pioneer style (at zoom level 19):
An advantage of Thunderforest over native OSM is that they allow zooming in to level 22, which makes a significant difference to the rendering, like this (level 22 on top of level 19):
Which would be great -- if the tracks were in exactly the right place. But a lower zoom provides a much more prominent background to work over.
In the next program update.
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