22 November 2006

Inspired or Not?

This sounds good news:

The European Parliament and Council reached agreement last night on the contents of the proposed INSPIRE Directive, which aims to harmonise spatial information across Europe.

Key points resolved during the final stages of the discussions between the institutions included the principles according to which citizens should be allowed to examine the official maps and other spatial data covered by the directive, and rules for granting authorities access to data held by other authorities.


Data search services designed for the public will generally be free of charge, although the directive allows fees to be charged for access to data that has to be updated frequently, such as weather reports.

However, the cynic in me suggests that the devil is in the details. Anybody know?

Update: Michael Cross of the Guardian does: the answer is "not inspired". We've been stitched up by the Ordnance Survey, invoking that perennial favourite, "reasons of national security" for withholding information - just like that nice Mr Bush does. Ever heard of Google Earth or Google Maps, which already give all this information?

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