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Niruta Neeupane's Diary

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My Open Mapping Fellowship Journey

Introduction

My mapping journey began during the 2020 lockdown period. With extra time on my hands, I delved into mapping projects. Little did I know that this initial curiosity would lead to a fellowship and a profound impact on the mapping community. Over the past five months, I had the incredible opportunity to participate in the Open Mapping fellowship. As a passionate geomatics engineering student, this experience has been both enlightening and impactful. In this diary, I’ll share my journey, the lessons I’ve learned, and the impact I’ve made.

Learning the Ropes

The fellowship began with an orientation, where I learned about the principles of open mapping, the importance of community-driven data collection, and the power of collaborative efforts. I familiarized myself with tools like Mapillary and EveryDoor, which allowed me to contribute to mapping tasks efficiently.

Mapping and Validation

I dove into mapping tasks, meticulously tracing roads, buildings, and other features on OpenStreetMap (OSM). Validation became my daily routine. I reviewed and corrected contributions made by fellow mappers. It was fascinating to see how our collective efforts improved the accuracy of OSM data.

Experiences and Learnings

##Community Engagement One of the highlights was engaging with the mapping community. I participated in virtual meetups, exchanged ideas, and collaborated with mappers worldwide. Their insights and encouragement fueled my passion for open mapping.

Technical Skills and Impacts Made

I honed my skills in QGIS, mastering spatial analysis, cartography, and data visualization. The ability to create meaningful maps from raw data was empowering. My contributions directly impacted OSM. New roads, points of interest, and accurate boundaries now exist thanks to our collective efforts. Knowing that my edits are part of a global resource motivates me to continue mapping.

Empowering Local Communities

Open mapping isn’t just about data, it’s about empowerment. By mapping missing features, we empower local communities to make informed decisions, plan infrastructure, and respond to emergencies effectively.

Acknowledgement

This fellowship had a profound impact on all participants. It would not have been possible without the dedicated efforts of Mikko Tamura, Dinar Adiatma, Honey Grace Fombuena, and many others. Their motivation and support have been instrumental in my success. I extend my heartfelt thanks to Open Mapping Hub Asia-Pacific and the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) for making this fellowship program a grand success. The mentorship and guidance provided by these individuals were invaluable. They shared their expertise generously, offering insights and feedback that significantly enhanced my learning experience. Their encouragement and recognition of our contributions kept us motivated throughout the fellowship.

Conclusion

My Open Mapping fellowship journey has been transformative. I’ve grown as a mapper, connected with like-minded individuals, and contributed to a valuable resource. As I continue this journey, I’m excited to see how open mapping will shape our world.

Location: Om Shanti Chok, Pokhara-17, Pokhara, Kaski, Gandaki Province, 37600, Nepal