Friday, 13 September 2013

State of the Map Review

As promised here is the first of our #Maptember event reviews courtesy of AGI members Abigail and Angharad.

Abigail, reviewing the main conference said: Last week saw State of the Map (SOTM) come to Birmingham, an event that is part of this month’s #Maptember. A community led event based around Open Street Map (OSM), SOTM move location each year. This is the first time that it was back in the UK since the very first event in 2007 and OSM has come a long way since then.

Topics on offer varied from the business focused sessions on Friday (featuring presentations from Ordnance Survey, ITOWorld, the National Trust and many more) to local mapper perspectives and reflective sessions on diversity in the community. Technical sessions and workshops were also included throughout the programme, in addition to a number of lightening talks and informal sessions to allow everyone to have the opportunity to contribute.

The conference attracted a large number of delegates from outside of the UK and the opportunities to socialise and learn from each other’s regional experiences really helped to bring the worldwide OSM community together.

The GeoCommunity in the UK is thriving and the buzz and atmosphere at this event was fantastic to see. Huge congratulations are due to the organisers who managed a very smooth event.

Talks and videos from the event, along with further information, are available online at:

Angharad who also attended the event added: So the first of the 'Big Three' of #Maptember kicked off in Birmingham on Friday 6th Spetember.

State of the Map (SotM) is the annual international conference for the Open Street Map community, and this year it was held in Aston University.

The first day covered topics focused on business uses of OSM, which included a keynote speech from Peter ter Harr, Head of Products at Ordnance Survay, giving an overview of OS's history and important crowd sourced information is becoming for authoritative.

Christian Quest, OSM France, delivered an entertaining brief of how the one of the oldest road map makers, Michelin used OSM to make their first OSM derived map.  

Day two focused on community engagement and inclusion, Aylssa Wright, Director of Solutions at OpenGeo, kicks off the day with her "Change the ratio" - a thought provoking look at how the Open community is still, not as diverse as its open participation ethos might suggest.

Day three continued the community theme with several talks covering the growing 'Gamification' of map contribution - which highlights an interesting change of focused seen at this year’s SotM, from mapping the empty spaces to improving the quality of what is there.

Most of the talks are now available to watch online at:

Big thanks and congratulations to Brian Prangle, Mappa Merica OSM group and all the SotM13 conference organisers - now on to GeoCommunity and FOSS4G!

The State of the Map Crowd, Complete With Our Two Reviewers Right at the Front

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