More than 600 local, state and federal governments have signed up for the Waze Connected Citizens Program, and more than 80 have expressed interest in a new Waze open source processor—New York City; Los Angeles; Anchorage, Alaska; and Denver among them—to contribute code or deploy the finished solution. The only cost they’ll incur will be that of paying the cloud provider, Amazon, for storage and data transfer: less than $200 a month.
1. Stick to the Commons: as a goal and a practice
2. Create syntony on the goal
3. People’s needs first
4. Keep an eye on interoperability and use web technology
5. Contribute to the Federated Commons
6. Provide open access
7. Use free software
8. Self-host your infrastructure
9. Build on open technology standards
10. Make sure you really own your data
11. Use free open data licenses
12. Guarantee the openness of taxonomies
13. Make the Data Commons thrive through your usage
14. Care for your Data Commons
15. Protect the ‚maps & atlasses commons‘ legally as commons
16. Crowdsource your mapping
17. Remember always why you are making the map and who you are making it for.
18. Archive the map when it doesn’t work anymore for you.
The United Nations Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management (UN-GGIM) recently published their second edition of Future Trends in Geospatial Information Management. I blogged about the first edition here. Below are some of the excerpts I found interesting or noteworthy. The report itself is a 50-page document (PDF 7.1Mb).
Phi Beta Iota: This is the foundation for getting to a world brain in which all data in all languages and mediums is “grounded” in a 1:20,000 or better open source digital chart (three-dimensional, of course).
Researchers at the University of California, Riverside have developed a new, more computationally efficient way to process data from the Global Positioning System (GPS), to enhance location accuracy from the meter-level down to a few centimeters.
Until now the learning of GIS has not spread as widely as it could, in large part because of the high cost of GIS software. The benefits of GIS have been limited to large organizations, governments, and academia. Where is the GIS for the average person? In September 2013, QGIS 2.0 was released, answering the question posed above. This GIS software, released under a Free and Open Source (Creative Commons CC BY-SA 3.0) license, offers a credible alternative to commercial GIS programs. Now everyone can do GIS, regardless of their budget for software. Individuals, small businesses, charities, political parties, First Nations, journalists and numerous other groups can now harness the power of GIS for their own purposes. Read full article
The US military made maps during the Cold War too, of course, but the two superpowers had different mapping strategies that reflected their different military strengths … the US military rarely made maps more detailed than 1:250,000, and generally only did so for areas of special strategic interest. “The Soviets, on the other hand, were the global leaders in tank technology,” Forbes says. “One to 50,000 scale is globally considered among the military to be the tactical scale for ground forces,” Forbes says.
Below is a brilliant essay that shows how cartographic hallucinogenics can capture one’s Orientation and create an incestuously amplifying* decision cycle that disconnects a “policy” maker from real world. * Note to new readers: For an explanation of how “incestuous amplification” operates to disconnect a decision maker from the exigencies of the real world read my essay, Incestuous Amplification and the Madness of King George.
The citizen response to 2012’s Hurricane Sandy was in many important ways more effective than the response from established disaster response institutions like FEMA. New York-based response efforts like Occupy Sandy leveraged existing community networks and digital tools to find missing people; provide food, shelter, and medical assistance; and offer a hub for volunteers and donors.
In this talk Willow Brugh — Berkman fellow and Professor of Practice at Brown University — demonstrates examples ranging from Oklahoma to Tanzania where such distributed and digital disaster response have proved successful, and empowered citizens to respond in ways traditional institutions cannot.
Researchers in the Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin have developed a centimeter-accurate GPS-based positioning system that could revolutionize geolocation on virtual reality headsets, cellphones and other technologies, making global positioning and orientation far more precise than what is currently available on a mobile device.
MicroMappers combines crowdsourcing and artificial intelligence to make sense of “Big Data” for Social Good. Why artificial intelligence (AI)? Because regular crowdsourcing alone is no match for Big Data. The MicroMappers platform can already be used to crowdsource the search for relevant tweets as well as pictures, videos, text messages, aerial imagery and soon satellite imagery. The next step is therefore to add artificial intelligence to this crowdsourced filtering platform. We have already done this with tweets and SMS. So we’re now turning our attention to aerial and satellite imagery. Read full post with video and links.
This book shows us once again why Patrick Meier is a thought leader in leveraging emerging technologies for social impact. His book captures the enormous possibilities and avoidable pitfalls of big data, social media and artificial intelligence in crisis contexts. Digital humanitarians can be powerful agents for social change but ground-truthing what we see and hear digitally is more important than ever. —Aleem Walji, Chief Innovation Advisor, Leadership, Learning, and Innovation, World Bank Group
Phi Beta Iota: The book title and description from the publisher are misleading. This is not a book about Big Data. It is a book about distributed human networks using open source information technologies to achieve situational awareness with a speed and precision that the entire US secret intelligence community (which costs $100 billion a year) cannot match.