Difference between revisions of "Map Editor Interface and Controls"

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(updated save count verbiage as counter is always red)
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==== Reload ====
==== Refresh or Reload Layers ====
The small curved arrow at the top right of the Layers list [[File:Reload-layers.png|border]] will reload all layers in the current view without reloading the whole page (excluding Satellite Imagery, Cities, and GPS layers). This is a great way to see changes recently made by another editor in the area without losing the Chat history.
The small curved arrow at the top right of the Layers list [[File:Reload-layers.png|border]] will reload all layers in the current view without reloading the whole page (excluding Satellite Imagery, Cities, and GPS layers). This is a great way to see changes recently made by another editor in the area without losing the Chat history.

Revision as of 03:49, 28 May 2014

Back to Map Editing

Map Editor Layout

There are three main areas of the Map Editor:

  1. Toolbar
  2. Tabs Area
  3. Map display area

Wme whole window blank.jpg

  • The very top-right corner of the window has two important drop-down menus:
    • Language: The language you want the editor interface to display
    • Infrastructure: Select whether you are editing in Israel, US & Canada, or the rest of the World
  • At the top, a toolbar with a search box, and buttons to Add, Save, Undo, Redo, and Delete
  • At the left is a Tabs Area where information is shown or made available to edit in one or more tabs
  • At the bottom of the left area are some important links for all editors to know, such as the Map Editing wiki start page, the Waze Map Editor forum, current Waze status website and keyboard shortcuts link. (Shortcut key: ?)
  • When there are no objects selected on the map (Map Problems and Update Requests are not considered map objects)
    1. Me displays your wazername, permissions level and current points, a link to the map editing video and editing manual
    2. Drives displays an historical archive the drives you taken with Waze running on your smartphone
    3. Areas shows a list of areas you are allowed to make edits within
  • When a segment is selected
    1. General allows updating the segment attributes such as road type, direction, level, toll road, and locked and other segment details. In "Edit Mode," the General tab also displays and allowed editing of country, state in the US, city, and segment name. This is also where you can manage any alternate names (linked streets).
  • At the top of the main display area below the toolbar, is a wide area which displays:
    • To the left will be the current city and state (US), or Country (outside North America).
    • To the right is a loading indicator which appears only when map elements are still loading.
  • In the top-right corder of the main window, inside the main window space, is the activator for the layers menu.
  • The map display area, which takes up the majority of the space is explained in more detail below in the Map Display Area section.

Map Editor Tool Bar

Wme top toolbar.jpg

At the top of the Waze Map Editor you will see the main tool bar. It includes the primary control buttons for the editor.

Search box

Wme31 757 mohawk columbus oh search results.jpg

In the wide search box, you can enter an address, city, state, country, landmark, point of interest, or a combination of those. After hitting Enter or clicking the Find button, you will either be taken to the only result, or be given a list of matches from which to select.

For example, entering "757 Mohawk St, Columbus, OH" will center the map and drop a search marker directly on that address.

Wme31 main st newyork search results.jpg

However, searching for "main st, new york" is less specific and will therefore give you a list of matches from which to select.

Draw Menu

Wme button add.png

Shortcut keys: i, o, g, p or u

Wme draw menu list.png

The Draw Button is not really a button, but a menu. You do not need to click on it; just hover your mouse over it and the menu of objects you can add will appear below. Alternately you can use the shortcut keys for each one:

Details for each of these actions are found in the Editing Manual Quick Start Guide. Use the hyperlinks above to reach each section. Places use the same creation mechanism.

Save Button

Wme button save.png

Wme button save pending red.png Shortcut key: Ctrl+s

The Save button serves two purposes: 1) it displays the current number of changes pending to be saved, and 2) when clicked, it saves all the current changes you have made.

As you make changes, the counter in the Save button increases. The number in the icon is shown to red as a warning that many unsaved changes may be difficult to save if there is a single error among the changes. (This counter is number of changes you've made which can be undone, NOT the number of edits you get credit for.)

When the button is clicked (or the shortcut key used), the editor saves all of the current changes you have made. This process is a little more complex than this sounds, but that is what it does. In order to save properly, your browser receives messages back from the Waze server in the event of any errors. If there is an error when saving, the editor will try to give you a detailed error message and a suggestion to fix it. The map view will typically try to show the error area highlighted in a bright circle.

Once the save operation completes successfully, you cannot Undo previous changes with the Undo button.

Undo Button

Wme button undo.png

Shortcut key: Ctrl+z

The Undo button will undo unsaved successive previous changes with each click. IMPORTANT: Once the Save button is clicked and the save operation is complete, the Undo button has no effect on previous changes.

A change can be deleting a geometry node from a segment or renaming a landmark. It can also be a change to multiple objects at once. For example, if you multi-select 25 street segments to change them from No Entrance to 2-way, that is considered a single change. Therefore, one click on Undo will undo that change for all 25 segments.

Redo Button

Wme button redo.png

Shortcut key: Ctrl+Shift+z

The Redo button will re-apply any changes which have been recently undone with the Undo button.

Delete button

Wme button delete.png

Shortcut key: Delete (Del)

The Delete (trashcan) button will delete, or trash, any currently selected objects. If you have multiple objects selected, you will be prompted to confirm the multiple deletion. The only object you can currently multi-select is segments.

Objects are not actually deleted until the Save button is clicked. Once the save button is pressed, you cannot Undo any edits or deletes.

Tabs Area

At the left side of the window, below your username, is an area which is both informational and functional. Depending on whether an object is selected, the type of object and how many, different tabs will be available which allow you to view and edit details.

Tabs with No object selected

Wme31 hey username.jpg
WME Tabs.png

When no objects are selected on the map, the Tabs Area displays user information. The top section greets you by name and is always visible regardless of what is showing or displayed on the map. Map Problems and Update Requests are not considered map objects, so the tabs below your name will display when a Map Problem or Update Request is selected.

Me Tab

Wazer-with-premission.pngPermission levels.png

The Me tab displays your map editing permission level and current points for the server on which you are editing (North America or World).

A Wazer with a hard hat displays if you have editing permissions. To the right of that icon will be a highlighted cone with a number. This number is your editing rank. Below those graphics is a sentence about your editing rank and permissions.

Below your user information is a box graphic which when clicked, will open up a boxed panel leading to seven videos from Waze. The videos are titled as follows:

  1. Introduction
  2. Before You Start
  3. Getting Started
  4. Basic Terms
  5. Basic Editing
  6. Map Problems
  7. Examples

This animated guide is a good way to get an overview of the Waze map editing system and some of the processes. These videos are only an introduction, and the information contained in the Waze wiki documentation is where you will find the most detail on the editor and, importantly, guidelines for mapping standards.

Drives Tab


Drives are journeys or routes that you have driven with the Waze client running. While you drive, Waze monitors your journey (recording details like location, time, speed) and transfers this information to the Servers. This data is used to validate the existing map (roads, turns, directions) and to learn average journey times. Other Waze users and Area Managers can also view the anonymous GPS tracks of many users when editing the map in the Waze Map Editor. This helps with map accuracy.


Clicking on one of the five visible entries will center the map along that route and will zoom out to try and fit your entire route on the screen. Routes over about 20 miles / 30 kilometers will usually not fit on the map display all at once due to scale limitations. Use the mouse or arrow keys to pan around on the map. Parts of the route that display in red are not currently paved roads. Consider zooming into that area to determine if a road should be added.

Select the highlighted numbers at the bottom of the tab window to select older routes in date order.

Drives are typically processed and available for viewing in the Waze Map Editor within an hour of completing the drive. For most short drives such as commutes between home and work (under about 35 miles / 50 kilometers), you will likely find them in the editor in under 15 minutes. If the servers are bogged down, or if your drive is significantly longer (over 100 miles / 150 kilometers), these drives may take up to a week to appear. If you don't see your drive after seven (7) days, open a ticket from the Support page, Quick Help box. Use the Email link and fill out the form and submit.

Areas Tab

This list is of the various defined areas of which can perform edits. This is known as your editable area.

Tabs when segment(s) are selected

Segments selected editmode.png

The area above the tabs will show how many segments are selected. The example graphic to the right shows what the Tabs Area looks like when multiple segments are selected and the General tab is in "Edit mode."

Details on these tab settings can be found under Road Properties

General Tab

The General tab displays the segment name and alternate names details at the top. Just below that information is an Edit button. More info on that below. On this tab, you can modify the road type, toll road checkbox, direction, level, and lock checkbox. Further down past a seperator line is more general details about the segment(s) which is/are selected.

Segment Edit Detail

When you click on the Edit button, or tap shortcut key 'e', the General tab changes, displaying more detail information and allows you to make changes to the country, state (US only), city and segment name. Next is where you can add or remove any alternate street name information. An alternate name, technically referred to as a "linked street," is used to capture detail such as the state or US route name of a street as it goes through an urban area where it is commonly referred to with a local name. The local name would be put into the primary name field, but the highway name can be entered as an alternate name. An alternate name street must also have the same city as the primary segment.

Be sure to review the naming convention used in your area before changing names.

If you run into an extreme case where you need to rename the city name on a large number of streets. Review the article Smudged city. The end of the article includes a link to a special form to converting a mass number of segments using the help of Waze staff in the database.

Select Entire Street
Segment selected.png

When you click the button titled "Select Entire Street," or use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+a the editor will select all segments connected to the current segment with the same name, city, state, country information. It will also select some segments off the current visible area.

Edit House Numbers

When you click the button titled Edit House Numbers, or use the keyboard shortcut 'h', WME enters the House Number editing interface.


  • The Edit House Numbers button appears when there is only one segment selected.
  • The Edit House Numbers button isn't available to click when there are changes which need to be saved. The message, "Save your changes to edit house numbers" appears below the button.

Add Restrictions

When you click the button titled Add restrictions, or use the keyboard shortcut 't', WME enters the Scheduled Restrictions editing interface


  • The Add restrictions button appears when there is one or more segments selected.
  • If there are restrictions which already exist on any selected segment, the button name changes to Edit restrictions.

Tabs when a Camera is selected

Wme camera tab speedcam.png

When a camera is selected, there is a single General tab which allows you to set the alert speed for a Speed Camera, and also to approve the camera once it is placed in the correct location. Red Light Cameras only need to be placed and approved and have no speed set.

Tabs when a landmark is selected

With a landmark selected, there is a single General tab which allows you to select the landmark type, give it a name, a description, and a checkbox to lock the landmark to prevent changes by lower ranking editors: Below that is an address details section which displays the landmark's assigned Country, State (in the US) and City. Click the Edit button to change any values and click Apply when complete:
Wme landmark tab.png Wme landmark address details.png

Setting the proper address details will allow Waze to utilize their own internal search for landmarks which appear only in Waze and not in other search provider results.

Tabs when a Gas Station is selected

Wme us gasstation landmark selected.png

When a gas or petrol station landmark is selected, the view is very similar to that of a generic landmark. There are some more fields of data which need to be filled in or verified as part of the Gas Stations functionality in Waze.

For the Waze application to be as useful as possible to drivers, it is important to ensure all fields of information are fully and properly completed. For more details about completing this data, please see the Gas Stations page.

Map Display Area

All the layers currently selected for display show up in the map display area. The map display areas takes up the majority of the browser window. Any object displayed is selectable and editable, depending on your editing rights in the area you are viewing. Select a street and change its geometry. Select a landmark and change its name. Add a road where one should be, or delete a road which should no longer appear.

There are six main component controls or displays in the corners of the map display area:

  1. Info Bar
  2. Layers
  3. Zoom Control
  4. StreetView Activator
  5. Scale
  6. Lat/Lon
  7. Permalink

Wme control elements highlighted.jpg

Info bar

Wme info bar.jpg

Just below the main toolbar, there wide area which runs the width of the map display area.

  • The left side will display the current city and state (US) or city and country (world).
  • The right side displays whether the editor is still loading any layers, such as road images or GPS points.


Wme layers expanded.png

On the right-side of the toolbar, you will see this icon: Layers.png

When clicked, it expands to display the layers or object types which are available for display on the main map. When the box next to the layer name is checked, then that layer is active and being displayed. There is a default shortcut key defined for each layer, and to make it easy to remember, with two exceptions: The shortcut is Shift+<first letter of layer name>. The two exceptions are the satellite/aerial imagery, which uses the letter i as the shortcut key for Imagery, and Places which uses the letter L because it was previously called Landmarks.



The six small dots to the left of a layer selector box is a drag handle which enables those layers to be reordered changing the visibility of one layer above another. Only a few layers can be reordered. PLEASE NOTE: The layer order is reversed so layers at the bottom of the list appear above layers higher up in the list. Therefore Satellite Imagery will always appear below all other layers.

Refresh or Reload Layers

The small curved arrow at the top right of the Layers list Reload-layers.png will reload all layers in the current view without reloading the whole page (excluding Satellite Imagery, Cities, and GPS layers). This is a great way to see changes recently made by another editor in the area without losing the Chat history.

Satellite Imagery

Aerial skinny.png Shortcut key: Shift+i

Waze uses aerial and satellite photography provided by Google.


Cities skinny.png Shortcut key: Shift+c

City boundaries as defined by segments assigned to that city are shown in different colors. This layer is helpful in finding segments which are set to the wrong city. Until an area is heavily edited an updated, some city boundaries are likely to be overlapping or appear to be unassociated with any segments.

Changing the name of the city for a road is done through the WME interface documented in segment edit detail. If after fixing the city names you still have incorrect city boundaries, review the article on Updating the city layer.


Road segments skinny.png Shortcut key: Shift+r

Roads are all of the streets, alleys, highways, and freeways which make up the drivable street system in Waze. Depending on the zoom level, some street types are not displayed so that the map is not too cluttered.

GPS points

Gps tracks straight skinny.png Shortcut key: Shift+g

This layer will show tracks from Waze users as they drive with Waze running. Waze records and plots the GPS coordinate of drivers. This layer is useful for relatively accurate placement of new or moved roads when aerial photography is not yet updated. GPS points appear in the map editor as colored arrows. The direction of travel for a GPS point determine its color, so that all drivers going the same direction will show their points in the same color. This makes it easier to determine errant GPS points, or where a road on the map doesn't follow the actual path of vehicles.

Area Managers

Wme3 area managers layer skinny.png Shortcut key: Shift+a

The Area Managers layer shows overlapping colored, named rectangles. These areas represent the areas those users have Area Manager permissions. This layer allows you to identify a user you may wish to send a PM in the forums about a specific issue you noticed in their area, but do not have rights to fix.


Places skinny.jpg Shortcut key: Shift+l (L)

Places are also known as POIs (Points of Interest). These can really be just about anything, but tend to be things like parks, gas stations, cemeteries, transit stations, etc. There are two types of Places: Area and Point. Point Places are for most small business, shops, etc. Area Places are for large stores, malls, parks, etc.

See Places for more information on this topic.

(Speed) Cameras

Camera2false.png Camera2true.png Camera4false.png Camera4true.png Shortcut key: Shift+s

Speed cameras, red-light cameras and dummy cameras are shown on this layer. Drivers report camera location and type, and a map editor is required to confirm the existence of the camera, precise location and direction the camera is point before it will appear on the client. Confirmed cameras will pop up a visual and audible alert in the Waze app when approaching a speed or red light camera.

See Cameras for more information.


Problem pin open-low.png

Problem pin open-med.png Problem pin open-high.png Problem pin not-identified.png Shortcut key: Shift+p

The Waze servers are constantly analyzing driver's GPS tracks to determine when there might be a problem with the map and uses the Problems layer to alert the editors. Some types of problems tracked are missing roads, incorrect turns allowed at intersection, wrong direction of road.

See Map problems for more information.

Update Requests

Request pin open-low.png

Request pin open conversation-med.png Request pin open-high.pngRequest pin solved conversation.png Shortcut key: Shift+u

These are user-submitted map issues while on the road or from LiveMap. This marker shows the location the user reported the issue from. The user's driven route for a distance before and after the reported location will be shown in bright green. If Waze was in navigation mode at the time of the report, the requested route for a distance before and after the reported location will be shown in purple, with markers along the route with the turn direction given to the user.

See Update requests for more information.

Editable areas

Editable area skinny.png Shortcut key: Shift+e

Where you can edit is determined primarily by where you have driven. Edit rights are initially granted within a one-mile radius of where you have driven with Waze running. Your editable area is shown in lighter-colored areas surrounded by a black border. Users who are Area Managers will also see their managed areas in a colored highlighted area. See Editable area for more information.

Live Users

Wme live wazer.png Shortcut key: Shift+v

The Live Users layer will display other map editors with the icon above. Editors' locations are shown in real-time.

Zoom Control

Zoom controller.png

Shortcut key: Shift+UpArrow, Shift+DownArrow

In the upper left corner, the zoom control is one way to adjust the zoom level, or altitude, or the map display area. Clicking + will move in closer, showing more detail. Clicking - zooms out/higher and removes detail. You can also click and drag the selector in between the + and - buttons.

The other methods for controlling the current zoom level is covered below in the section on Moving around the map.


Wme sv lens blue.gif

To Activate StreetView, drag the blue lens icon from under the zoom control to the street for which you want to get the street level Google images.

As you drag the lens around the map, it will change colors to indicate the presence of street view images:

  • Waze sv noview.gif Street View is NOT available here
  • Waze sv viewavail.gif Street View is available

Once the lens has been dropped, the lens will have an arrow inside it which points in the direction StreetView is pointing.

Wme streetview directional arrow.gif

In StreetView mode, all editing operations are available (segment properties, map problems and update requests, house numbers, scheduled restrictions, etc.)

The right side of the display area is now dedicated to StreetView. You may pan the image in all directions by dragging the image around with the mouse or using the Pan controls at the top left of the StreetView pane. Zoom the image using the zoom controls on the StreetView pane.

To move the StreetView location, use either the arrows which appear on the StreetView image between the middle and bottom. Or, you can drag the lens on the Waze map using the small white handle, similar to the drag handle for House Numbers.

Wme streetview ur convo.jpg

While all editing functions are available, you will find that activating too many things at once can made for significantly reduced editable area. Clicking on a Map Problem or Update Request will reduce the editable map area. And activating an Update Request Conversation makes the visible editable area quite skinny, unless you have a very wide monitor.

When you are editing and activate all these different modes at the same time, be sure you know the Keyboard Shortcuts because control like map zoom will be covered up and can only be accessed via the keyboard.

To Close StreetView, click the X at the top right-hand corner of the StreetView pane.


Scale display.png
In the lower right corner is a small graphic showing the current scale of the map display area.

The values in the scale relate to the zoom level you see in the URL address of the web browser. Changing the zoom level alters the displayed scale.



Lat-lon display.png

In the lower-right corner is a control showing the latitude and longitude of the mouse pointer as it moves over the map.


Wme permalink icon.jpg

Directly to the right of the Lat/Lon Display is a chain link icon which is a link to the current map view and selected objects.


Moving around the map

  • Move around the map by clicking and dragging on the map itself
  • Keyboard arrow keys will pan the map
  • The keyboard shortcut Shift+f will hide the Waze top banner bar and put the editor into "Fullscreen Mode"
  • There are four ways to zoom the map:
  1. There is a zoom controller on the top left-hand corner of the map. You can either drag the slider up and down, or click on the + and - buttons.
  2. Double-clicking any point on the map will zoom in one level and center the map on that point.
  3. Scrolling up with your mouse wheel will zoom in on a certain point, and scrolling down will zoom out, keeping the mouse pointer's location in the same location. On Macintosh systems with a track pad or similar mouse device, dragging left and right performs this action
  4. Hold the Shift key down and then click and drag a rectangle on the map. The map will then zoom in onto the selected area:
Wme shift-zoom.jpg

Back to Map Editing