The Philippines is known for our thousands of colorful, loud, and fun fiestas (festivals) we celebrate yearly. Our Fiestas can be religious, cultural, or both and are marked by religious activities, parades, cultural rituals, trade fairs, exhibits, concerts, pageants and various games and contests. There’s always one thing, or another, reason to celebrate.
The reality of that of the Philippine open mapping community is that many (if not most) of the community activities happen in the capital region, Metro Manila. It is not that we don’t have contributors but outside of our metropolis, they are less organized and thinly spread out across our 7,641 islands.
In 2016, when advocates from the local OpenStreetMap and FOSS4G community organized the State of the Map Asia conference in Manila, many of us were inspired in organizing a similar, major event but with a more local flavor, targeting local enthusiasts and participants.
Finally, in January this year, we’ve gathered enough map-py friends who committed to organizing a one-day conference and delivering workshops, as long as we can find a suitable venue. We didn’t have any specific place in mind, but we’re pretty sure it won’t be anywhere in Manila.
What started as a dreamy conversation between friends who committed to facilitating a few topics to fit a small, one-day conference back in January, has expanded to three days, with three workshop tracks, and more volunteers jumping in to lead or facilitate workshops and panels. Whew!
We are pleased to announce the first Pista ng Mapa conference in the Visayas, in the city of gentle people, Dumaguete:
“Pista ng Mapa” (English: Festival of Maps) is envisioned to celebrate the success of open data and maps in the country, especially in the fields of community development, transport, and humanitarian action. It aims to encourage diverse participation and stimulate the growth of vibrant hyper-local contributors’ communities outside the capital region by providing free access to talks, technical workshops, and panel discussions.
We are excited to work with Foundation University, one of Dumaguete City’s pioneer in private education and leader in I.T., who will be hosting the three-day event this August. The free workshops are open to the public, and made possible by our generous sponsors: Kaart Group, Mapbox, HIVOS, Mapillary, Grab, and UAV4GEO.
We know that there’s already a growing number of contributors from this region, and I hope that this would be an opportunity to finally meet many of you in real life, as well as learn from each other. We have workshops topics that include sessions that don’t expect any previous OpenStreetMap or GIS experience, and therefore newcomers are very welcome indeed.
We can accommodate more people during the plenary talks and panel sessions, but our hands-on workshops are limited by the computer laboratory facilities.
Hurry, and reserve for your free slot from our event registration site!