[HOT] Disaster Mapping Program Overall - nearly complete

Russell Deffner russell.deffner at hotosm.org
Sun Aug 23 19:31:02 UTC 2015

Hi everyone, hope you had a great weekend. Just a quick update on the HOT
Training Center - sorry, there are basically too many settings in moodle for
my brain to retain; I think all the courses became available on Saturday,
but some of the enrollment settings prevented most of them from actually
being accessible. That should all be fixed now and most all the content is
done, there are a few lessons here and there that I am not happy with yet,
will release soon. Also I'm not exactly sure how we will maintain the flow
from: Activation Essentials => Role Course => Leadership Course; currently
you can enroll for the role courses before you complete Activation
Essentials, but you cannot complete them without. The Leadership Course is a
bit different and the 'best' way I could figure out how to prevent
enrollment before completing a Role Course was to set an enrollment key, but
so far I think I have to give it out manually.  Anyway, that is not such a
big deal at the moment because maybe some of you have noticed that I keep
bumping the Exams further out - and that is because we are very close to
having a Badge system, so I'd prefer to have that in place before anyone
actually completes a course.


It's great to see that a handful of people have enrolled in Activation
Essentials in the last couple days, I hope it is at least somewhat
informative on the Activation Protocol and general direction of the HOT
Disaster Mapping Program.


Kind regards,



From: Russell Deffner [mailto:Russell.Deffner at hotosm.org] 
Sent: Friday, August 21, 2015 1:10 PM
To: hot (hot at openstreetmap.org)
Subject: Disaster Mapping Program Overall - nearly complete


Hello HOT,


Forgive the many typos and errors you may soon witness. Almost exactly 11
months ago we were awarded a grant from the Hewlett Foundation in order to
improve our ability to respond (i.e. enhance the HOT Disaster Mapping
Program). Those funds were used to improve the HOT Export Tool, Field Papers
and create an Activation Curriculum. For me it has been a project of many
sprints since I was selected as the Curriculum Specialist just about four
months ago. Within a week of starting the contract to develop both a
'procedure and curriculum' for our Activators I was in DC with a small team
of core HOTties for a 3 day sprint to just dump as much knowledge onto me as


>From there it felt like a 3 month marathon to capture everything that was
happening with the Nepal Activation and merging that into the 'procedures',
the result I am so happy to present to you is the Activation Protocol which
can now be seen in 'print' form here:
This is the first time HOT has really tried to define any of our
organizational programs, and it really took a community to make it come
together.  Rather than a traditional 'top-down' approach to this
policy/guidance hybrid document, it really started from that original
brainstorming, built out through community input and then I just got the
pleasure to mold it and work with some great people on flow, design, etc.
You will notice it is 'pre-dated' for September 2015, and that is because we
recently came to the conclusion that 'why not launch the protocol and
training at the same time' - so sorry for those who have been waiting a long
time to see the final results.


Regarding the training, although I've chipped away the entire time, the last
month has been a bit of an 'iron man' challenge. However, I am super excited
to start getting volunteers trained; I think this is going to greatly
enhance that high-level coordination aspect that seems to be our greatest
challenge right now - there's truly a ton of moving parts behind-the-scenes
of an Activation and we need more trained people to make it operate more
smooth and consistently. It is my pleasure to invite everyone to the HOT
Training Center - beta launch! Before I give you the link, this is where the
disclaimer comes into play - there are many unfinished components to what
will hopefully be a very thorough, educational and maybe even entertaining
site for all of our volunteers who want to be on the roster for Activation


This is the beta launch, so really the core component that I am delivering
is the content; my goal is to have all 11 courses built-out content-wise
before the end of today. Graphics, exams and assignments (which will be
completed as a trainee during an activation or simulation exercise) and
certificate/badges are just around the corner. We will be conducting a
couple of workshops where we will perfect/tweak/add/remove/etc. so that,
back to the general "September 2015" date - by the end of the month we will
have a much more robust Disaster Mapping Program at HOT. Right now the only
course you can enroll in is Activation Essentials, but all the others will
be available starting Saturday morning; prepare for many typos, inconsistent
labeling, missing pieces, etc. each course has a forum (for now) for
reporting errors or making suggestions, feel free to make notes there.


Here's the link: http://courses.hotosm.org/ - warning this is also
'futuristic' as in it will currently give you a server error but redirect
you to where the current courses live (on the dev server, but we're
switching over as I type, at least by next week it will be all switched over
- warning: we might lose track of course completion, etc. so if you don't
want to risk having to take courses over, you might want to wait a bit).


Thank you so much to everyone who pitched in to make this happen!



Russell Deffner

Activation Curriculum Specialist

Email: Russell.Deffner at hotosm.org

OSM/Skype: russdeffner

Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT)

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