One of the main objectives of Smart Chicago is to help build the infrastructure of civic innovation in Chicago. That’s why we publish so much open source code, host so many apps, and support so many events.
Since so much of civic innovation relates to place, there’s nothing more infrastructural than the maps upon which we publish information. That’s why we’re stoked to support Ian Dees and the work that he & others are doing around OpenStreetMap.
OpenStreetMap is the wiki-style map of the world. Just like Wikipedia, you can add or change any part of the map, making it better for the community around you. In Chicago, the map is particularly detailed thanks to help from many dedicated mappers and data released by the city. The more people contribute, the better the map will get.
April is a busy OpenStreetMap month in Chicago. They are putting together two exciting weekends of events that we’re supporting along with our partner, Knight-Mozilla OpenNews: the Map-a-Thon and Hack Weekends.
Beginning mappers are invited to be a part of a national OpenStreetMap Map-a-thon by learning how to use our tools to improve the map in your area. You can add your favorite restaurant or comic book store, a local school or hospital. During the map-a-thon we’ll walk you through the process of finding your area, creating an account, and making your first edit. With that foundation, you can go on to make an impact by adding tons of information relevant to you and your community!
Attend the Map-a-thon April 20th and 21st at 1871 on the 12th floor of the Merchandise Mart, 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza from noon to 6pm. Participants will enjoy food and drinks thanks to Smart Chicago Collaborative.
For more information about the map-a-thon and to RSVP, please visit the Meetup page for the event.
OpenStreetMap Hack Weekend
If you know your way around a compiler, feel comfortable with JSON and XML, or know the difference between an ellipsoid and a geoid, then the Hack Weekend is for you. We’re looking for those with technical know-how to help make a difference in OpenStreetMap’s core software by writing patches and new software to help make mapping faster and easier. Special thanks to Knight-Mozilla OpenNews for their support and sponsorship.
The hack weekend will be held April 26th and 28th at 1871 from 9am to dinner time each day.
For more information about the hack weekend, please visit the OSM wiki page for the event.