Team OpenstreetMap: Indonesia

Last week we expanded our Indonesian HOT Team. As part of a way to spread open source skills and hand off responsibilities to locals, we added six new recruits who will be helping us to teach OSM throughout the high risk areas of Indonesia. They will be helping us “apply the principles of open source and open data sharing towards humanitarian response, disaster preparedness and economic development through OpenStreetMap”. The main reason why the Indonesian government is using OSM is because its tools and data are free so that there is no cost to getting started.  Programs, such as ArcGIS can cost up to $700 a year, so they are saving a lot of money in creating everything in open source programs.

This week we conducted our first workshop Kupang, NTT.  We taught government workers for the disaster preparedness initiative how to collect coordinates and create maps of their area so that they can better prepare these areas for a tsunami or earthquake.  Kupang is near a fault line.
I have lots to do, from writing and editing blog entries about our work ( to helping participants install the software (JOSM, QGIS, Garmin drivers, GPS Babel) to writing an Advanced guide to Openstreetmap to

So far, everything has been great except the internet.  All the software we use relies on the internet and I can not get a good connection during workshops or at hotels.  This makes my life a little difficult.  Kate, Emir and Va all use hot spots from their phones, which I am realizing is one of the most useful applications for traveling.  All you need is to load credit on your SIM card and you are set to go…


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