On September 9, 2023 Let’s Talk Spatial and OSM Bengaluru organized a mapping party in Chamrajpet, Bengaluru, India. We had 367 contributions to OpenStreetMap with 6 first-time contributors. After we finished mapping, we were #1 in the world in terms of number of edits!
The idea of organizing an outdoor mapping activity originated on the day when OSM celebrated its 19th Birthday. My social media was flooded with mappers celebrating in various different ways to show their love towards OSM.
On the last day of FOSS4G I saw mappers mapping the streets of Prizren - noting down the opening hours, contact details and much more information onto OSM. Though I missed the opportunity to map with them, I saw this could be done in my city, with the help of expert mappers.
I asked a couple of friends from FOSS4G (thanks Kaue and Feye), who are regular mappers - about how they organize outdoor mapping activities and what tools they prefer. Their response gave the initial push to concretize on a plan to organize this event. My Co-organisers of Let’s Talk Spatial agreed to it. We were left with the decision on the objective, tooling, and area to map.
I reached out to my friend and expert mapper Vivek to see if he’d be interested in co-organising the event. Luckily, he was simultaneously planning to start OSM Bengaluru Chapter - and thus it was a perfect platform to kickstart the chapter. Thus the event was finalized!
For our area of mapping, I suggested Chamrajpet since I’ve seen its rapid transformation in the last 10 years in addition to fewer edits compared to the rest of the city. Vivek concurred on the area, stating it would be a good fit also because of its connectivity to bus and metro.
On Vivek’s suggestion, we went ahead with Every Door as our tool for mapping, since it was beginner friendly and available on IOS and Android. He set up OSM Bengaluru telegram group and added the event to osmcal.org to kick things off. As a precursor to the event, Vivek and Sireesh updated buildings and roads over our Area of Mapping, to make for a smooth mapping experience for others.
We decided to restrict ourselves to map only Points of Interest, and decided to split into groups depending on the strength on the D-day.
We asked participants to join us by 8:30 AM at our meeting point. After the initial introduction about OSM and EveryDoor, we began mapping by 9:00 AM. We split ourselves into 3 groups, with each group having a mentor to guide others. We assigned specific streets to each group to map, which helped us avoid conflicts. The map can be found here
While we were mapping, we realized how easy it was to use EveryDoor. The difficult part was to identify the attribute associated with our Point of Interest.
By the end of 1 ½ hour, we had all gathered at a famous eatery to have breakfast and discuss our experiences.
For many, it was their first time mapping and they found it easy to use. For few it was their first time mapping as a team. For one, it was a meditative experience! We also discussed how many companies have started using OSM data.
From product managers, system engineers to Data scientists - OSM attracts and brings together diverse audiences, like no other.
See our changes https://tyrasd.github.io/latest-changes/#15/12.9500/77.5700 with tags #letstalkspatial #osmbangalore
OSM BLR Telegram: t.me/OSM_BLR
OSM BLR Matrix: https://matrix.to/#/#OSM_BLR:matrix.org
Let’s Talk Spatial Slack group: https://join.slack.com/t/letstalkspatial/shared_invite/zt-1hg9w92fa-MGo8krVg5MSYh1RE~cG~1g
Know more about Let’s Talk Spatial: https://letstalkspatial.in/
P.S: Thanks to Arjun for making me write this diary!