[HOT] OSM humanitarian mapping and its learning curve

john whelan jwhelan0112 at gmail.com
Wed Oct 12 21:09:58 UTC 2016

A suggestion would be for these types of tasks disable the tasking manager
from communicating with anything but JOSM its a bit drastic but where data
quality matters it is a very simple but crude method of keeping the very
inexperienced mappers away.

The other suggestion is disable Tasking Manager from permitting anything
but a JOSM mapper from validating but that would be on all projects.

Cheerio John

On 12 October 2016 at 16:57, Dale Kunce <dale.kunce at gmail.com> wrote:

> Thanks everyone. I agree that the task should be marked as appropriate for
> intermediate or advanced mappers.
> I also wanted to reiterate a point that Mikel made. Having two tasking
> managers, is not the greatest for more coordination. HOT's official tasking
> manager should be the only tasking manager used. Having conflicting tasks
> introduces errors and makes coordination for actual data use difficult.
> Romain,
> Thanks for your suggestions. My apologies on not getting back to you I've
> been very busy and traveling the last couple of days.
> You are correct that we changed the way that created tasks. There was some
> debate within the activation team as to which way to do the work. All of
> your comments will be captured in the after action for some lesson's
> learned.
> Thanks again for everyone that is contributing to the mapping.
> Dale
> On Wed, Oct 12, 2016 at 3:35 PM, Romain Bousson <romainbousson at gmail.com>
> wrote:
>> Hello,
>> I noticed the same issues recently. All along the week, as the media
>> coverage increased, the way that the projects and tasks were completing
>> themselves changed. From large tiles completed by several users turn by
>> turn, we came to big tiles directly divided into tiny tasks, being
>> completed by only one user in a few minutes. The peer review process,
>> making the quality of the work, was botched.
>> I personnaly found many tasks checked green as "validated" by newcomers,
>> and "completed" by newcomers.
>> For example, here is an extract from a message I sent to Dale Kunce
>> (admin of many Haïti projects), where I was pointing to the fact that many
>> newcomers did not see the instructions tab and so did not use the new
>> Digital Globe imagery, and stayed using Bing (that was before today's post
>> disaster imagery). But I unfortunately received no answer. I am not here to
>> complain about that: I understand that there may be a lot of other things
>> to do during these days.
>>> I just saw 4 tiles on the #2223 - Hurricane Matthew: Grand Anse coast
>>> project and all were wrong according to me (but maybe I am wrong and
>>> somebody have to tell me): - task #53 was checked "complete" by
>>> @michaelcraven, but many buildings were missing. - and the 3 main tasks of
>>> ANSE D'HAINAULT town : #232, #233 and #13. All 3 were clearly not done
>>> using Digital Globe imagery so it missed a lot of things.
>> I think some more warnings and advices written in the instructions tabs
>> would be very simple and quite effective.
>> Cheers,
>> Romain Bousson (mapping as Romainbou)
>> 2016-10-12 19:34 GMT+02:00 Severin Menard <severin.menard at gmail.com>:
>>> The edits on hotosm.org job #2228 <http://tasks.hotosm.org/project/2228>
>>> have started and now happens what I feared. There is no mention of what are
>>> the necessary skills and newbies are coming with a lot of enthusiasm but
>>> with almost no OSM experience. A quick analysis of the first 29
>>> contributors shows that 20 of them have created their OSM account less than
>>> one month ago. Some did it yesterday or today. Wow.
>>> The result of that : obviously, crappy edits are coming, spoiling what
>>> we have been doing over the last few days : now we have building as nodes
>>> where shapes are totally visible, un-squared bad shaped buildings and the
>>> main landuse area is self-cutting in various places (see there
>>> <https://leslibresgeographes.org/jirafeau/f.php?h=26gWjHki&p=1>).
>>> Nothing new under the sun : it was already the case for Haiti EarthQuake
>>> 2010. Quite a pity that six years after, despite the OSM tools have
>>> improved a lot, it remains the same. It is though quite simple to fix the
>>> most part of it: do-not-invite-newcomers-to-map
>>> -over-complex-crisis-contexts.
>>> I guess some will argue that the OSM newcomers are people of good will
>>> and that they just want to help and that they my feel offended/discouraged.
>>> Of course their intentions are high and yes they may feel a bit hurt. But
>>> this is really a classic in humanitarian response: people with the best
>>> intentions in the world may not fit for it, just because they are not
>>> experienced yet.
>>> Mapping in OSM in crisis response is not an exciting one-shot hobby : it
>>> does have its learning curve and it is key to learn how to map correctly
>>> before being dropped over complex humanitarian contexts. This is why I
>>> mentioned three sets of necessary skills for the jobs I created these last
>>> days on http://taches.francophonelibre.org. And the beginner mappers
>>> who joined the job that fitted for beginners are people that already have a
>>> few months of OSM experience, not newcomers. Newcomers should be driven
>>> over non urgent fields.
>>> If someone is not interested to learn first in not a mass media covered
>>> crisis context : this is not a problem, it is actually a good way to see
>>> real motivations. I personally prefer to get one mapper that will become a
>>> huge, excellent contributor, 3-4 more occasional but still producing neat
>>> data, than to lose 10 that would create crappy objects and just leave
>>> forever afterwards anyway.
>>> I guess the resulting need of duplicating the number of necessary edits
>>> (crappy ones then corrections) to get a clean data is a rather a good way
>>> to grow the number of total contributors and the number of total edits
>>> created through the # of the HOT TM instance that seems to be so important
>>> for the board of HOT US Inc (two current directors have contacted me for
>>> this purpose) to make communication and raise funds from the figures. But
>>> what is at stake here is to provide good baseline data for humanitarian
>>> response, not distorted metrics.
>>> Séverin
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>>> HOT at openstreetmap.org
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> --
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> Dale Kunce
> http://normalhabit.com
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