Pista ng Mapa 2023 is a blast!
Over the course of three days in Tacloban City, Leyte the event brought together local YouthMapper chapters, open data experts, and enthusiasts with a shared passion for open mapping, open data, and open source.
As an auditor and member of Viscan YouthMappers, a local chapter based at Visayas State University in Baybay, Leyte, I had the pleasure of participating in this vibrant gathering. In the picture below, you can see me with 11 of my fellow mappers from our organization.
Ms. Feye kicked off the event with her preliminary remarks, setting the tone for what turned out to be an inspiring and informative series of talks. Following her, Mr. Mikko took the stage, sharing his journey in the field. Interestingly, he featured photos of cats, adding a unique and memorable touch to his presentation.
Both Ms. Feye and Mr. Mikko, among others, have been instrumental in inspiring my journey down this path. Their dedication to sharing, contributing, and volunteering for the OSM community has motivated me to do the same.
The event provided an excellent platform to hear from various mappers about their contributions to mapping. I attended parallel sessions covering academic tracks, lightning talks, and general tracks. These sessions were not only enlightening but also sparked my interest in several areas. I look forward to sharing the knowledge gained with my peers upon my return from Tacloban. Some of the sessions that particularly caught my attention include:
- Utilzing OSM Building footprint Data for Urban Planning and Disaster Risk Reduction in the Municipality of Luna (Wilfredo Dizon Jr.)
- Mapping the road less traveled; Building careers with open geospatial (Ben Hur Pintor)
- COLLABDev: Data Driven development in Palimbang, sultan Kudarat (Mark Aimon Pangan)
- POIs for greenfield hyperscale data center site selection (Jikka Defiño)
- Mapping for resilience (Joyce Mae Callao)
- Beyond shapefiles and file-based data management (Ben Hur Pintor) *Still Waters Run Deep: Uncovering the Bathymetric and Morphometric Profile of Lake Danao in Ormoc City, Leyte, Philippines (Jeremy Romero)
- Why you shouldn’t use QGIS: new and upcoming features (Ben Hur Pintor)
- Mapping of Fire Hydrants as Baseline Data for Fire Emergency Response in Leyte Province, Philippines (Yhogen Boy Julve)
Of course, Kuya Yhogen and I had the pleasure of reuniting with some friends we met during PNMxSOTMA2022 in Legazpi Albay.
Workshops! This is one of the events I’m looking forward to. I learned a lot from the activities, and some of them were quite exciting to be a part of. In Ms. Leigh’s activity, we shared our experiences on how diverse and inclusive the mapping community is. Then, Mr. Ben and Mr. Ian shared their knowledge about the technical side of mapping, such as learning about Postgress and Post GIS, and Developing Geospatial applications. While this might be advanced for some, it is important to learn for me. Lastly, a workshop with Ate Erika and Kua Markel about the two apps we can use for mapping: Organic Map and Every Door is what I enjoyed because of how simple gathering of data can be a big thing in this community. A photo below is a group photo with Ms.Feye’s workshop.
After gaining insights and hands-on experience with mapping tools, YouthMappers dedicated a ‘community day’ to plan the future of Pista ng Mapa (PnM) and strengthen collaboration among youth mapping groups nationwide. Just like our local chapter, which shared insights on our strengths and weaknesses as individuals and as Viscan YouthMappers, I’ve come to realize that the journey ahead is still long. However, we cannot forget the progress and memories we’ve made, not only as a group but as a community.
A lot has happened, and I understand that the path forward may not be smooth, but I see it as an inspiration to continue working as part of the mapping community. The challenges we face will only serve to strengthen our resolve and commitment to making a positive impact through our mapping efforts.
An exciting adventure awaits us after the meet-ups with different communities. We’ll embark on a trip around Tacloban, immersing ourselves in the sites affected by Typhoon Yolanda. From exploring the exhibit inside UP Tacloban University to crossing the iconic San Juanico Bridge and visiting the Yolanda Shrine, our journey promises to be both educational and impactful.
My passion for mapping is a key ingredient that drives my advocacy for FOSS4G (Free and Open Source Software for Geospatial). Since joining the YouthMapper chapter, I have actively volunteered and participated in discussions and workshops related to these topics. I consistently share the importance of open mapping through our projects, seeking collaborations that can contribute to making a positive impact through open data and mapping, further promoting and advancing the cause of freedom and openness in these areas.
I firmly believe that mapping is a tool for everyone to use, empowering individuals and communities alike. Being part of this community is inspiring, allowing me to share my passion for mapping with others.
Mabuhay ang OSM community!
- Viscan YouthMappers
- UP Tacloban YouthMappers
- Tacloban City Information Office