[Talk-ca] BC2020i OSM Distributed Model and Education

OSM Volunteer stevea steveaOSM at softworkers.com
Fri Feb 2 21:58:24 UTC 2018

On Jan 30, 2018, at 7:49 AM, Jonathan Brown <jonabrow at gmail.com> wrote:
> I don’t mind reviewing the OSM education wiki for lessons learned and “promising practices” and seeing how it might inform the design of a mapathon event aligned to the K-12 curricula and postsecondary capstone project model. It will be messy, but that’s the nature of the beast. To use the jargon, start small, fail fast and apply what you learn to the next event.

With all due respect to you, Johnathan, I don't know where you got that jargon, but it does not apply to OSM:  our worldwide mapping project is not a "dumping ground" to "fail fast" where poor quality data are entered and then corrected as a nationwide project finds its footing, lurching forward to apply newly discovered corrections to its past mistakes.  No, it must plan first.  Pilots file flight plans, and they stay in contact with control towers with status and progress reports.  A nationwide OSM project is no different if all passengers are expected to land safely, especially on a long flight!

Sure, mistakes happen and we learn from them, course-correcting along the way, that's simply human nature.  But as I have been exhorting for months, what will MAKE BC2020 a successful OSM project is this:  good planning NOW and project management along the way.  BOTH must be front-loaded into the nationwide OSM project that BC2020 is, not bolted on later as an afterthought.

> Jamie Boyd and Moses Iziomon at the Treasury Board’s Open Government branch may have some funding to support Alessandro’s group in helping to engage the OSM “crowdmappers” and citizen science practitioners. This could align to their 2 year open government plan http://open.canada.ca/en/4plan/creating-canadas-4th-plan-open-government-2018-20. They are looking for workshop ideas for early May.

If TB has funding, ask them to seek and pay for expertise in nationwide-scope OSM project management experience:  good planning, harmonizing vision/goals of BC2020 with the culture of OSM to be "OSM first" (it is), writing wiki, assuring that mapathons, meetups, university and K-12 events have structure, direction and a solid plan FIRST before entering vast building data.  Too many large-scale OSM projects fail due to poor planning, a lack of standardization as to what and how goals are to be achieved and hence suffer poor results.  The method by which this gets solved is with up-front planning, that means NOW or very soon.  Crowdsourcing is not a magic bullet that yields great results for free or without planning.  There are costs involved:  thought, discussion, consensus, documentation and those take time and effort.

BC2020 has had a recent "reality check" that is it more than BC2020i (the initiative), it is now a full-fledged BC2020 WikiProject (without the i, as an OSM project).  That means wikis, import plans, documenting the process that each city/event might and should take, etc. get adhered to and followed.  To keep this communication in the dark and out of a wider OSM view essentially dooms this project to failure.  Please:  plan now for superior data later.  It has gotten better in the last week or two, but the "messy nature of the beast" approach noted above is not acceptable to the greater OSM community.  Both wiki and talk-ca are important venues for this dialog, private email exchanges can supplement it, but a nationwide project deserves a nationwide discussion that is front-loaded and transparent, not (exclusively) "fail fast."  In fact, OSM insists upon this.

Please install pilots in your large, jet aircraft.  If it is to fly and land at its destination (years into the future), it not only deserves, it simply must have an experienced flight crew.

With respect to you, all OSM volunteers in Canada, and indeed the OSM community at large,

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