Community Almanac - RFP to build an online mapping platform

The Orton Family Foundation just released a RFP to help them build their Community Almanac - an online mapping platform that helps communities to capture their assets or heart&soul. 

From the RFP: ... as stories, pictures and videos emerge during communities’ heart and soul articulation processes, and as technologies ever simplify the digital capture and depiction of such information on maps, the Foundation would like to offer the ability for its project communities and communities at large to utilize simple open source or Web 2.0 technology to build online, digital community almanacs. These community almanacs would be digital maps (perhaps GIS-derived, but not requiring active GIS to use) to (1) depict the community or county in which the project is located, (2) "easily" collect, display and manage community stories, pictures, graphics and videos through uploads by people in the community, and (3) make these stories and pictures readily accessible to all citizens through hotlinks on the map and/or other intuitive interface components. 

Read the full RFP document here >> 

The GeoWeb - Presentation at CommunityMatters07


My presentation at this years CommunityMatters conference, end of October in Burlington, VT. The presentation was giving a quick round-up of the paradigm shift happening in the realm of GIS/Mapping and setting the stage for the panel discussion that followed. 



Full screen view

Mapping a youth friendly city - the 910Arts project

At CU Denver, I recently helped design and implement a mapping application to collect feedback from Denver's youth about what they like and dislike in their neighborhoods. The application wasn't simply a static map often used by car rental companies, like ­car hire shannon­. It was an interactive mapping application that was used to conduct a survey. Children and teenagers were able to add markers to their home or other important places and answered three short questions about the neighborhoods around them. The whole application was built as a kiosk, and participants at the exhibition were able leave their feedback right at the spot.

The big opening was last Friday and I heard back from Darcy Varney, the curator of the exhibition, today: "... it adds a wonderful interactive dimension that has already engaged lots of people and was consistently popular throughout the weekend."

For the mapping part I rediscovered the WorldKit toolkit. One, because of its annotation feature, which is really easy of use and its ability to attach all kinds of input, especially in this case survey questions. The lack of an internet connection was another reason to go with WorldKit as a lightweight mapping solution without having to add something like GeoServer or MapServer to the mix.

Also, as much pain it is to make websites work with Internet Explorer, the kiosk mode is wonderful. If you're looking to adding kiosks as part of your eParticipation projects, you should definitely take a look at this feature

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