[OSGeo-Discuss] GIS-Lab (Russia)

Maxim Dubinin sim at gis-lab.info
Thu Oct 1 10:26:13 PDT 2009

Hi all,

Arnulf, thanks for explanations, this is the answer I was looking for.

I  think  I  never formally introduced our group so here it is. I hope
this  will be an interesting read for some of you. I want to emphasise
that  a  lot  of  efforts  and  time  spent  is required to bring such
community  to  life  and take its niche. But I hope our experience,
though very country-specific can be helpful.

We've  build virtual non-commercial GIS/RS community that became first
place  to  look  for  GIS/RS  field  related information in Russia and
around,  mainly  of  technical  nature,  but  more and more on general
topics  either.  We're  not  officially  registered  and at the moment
consider  such  status as a rather an impediment than benefit overall.
We  operate  under a main principle that community should not advocate
any  particular  brand or type of software, though some of its members
are passionate about one or another (myself included).

We  are  online  since 2002 and since then created about 400 articles,
various   education  materials,  documentation,  data,  training  etc.
Regarding  OS  software  we  focused  our  efforts  on  3  things:  1)
Translation,  we've  translated  manuals  for gvSIG, GRASS, MapServer,
PostGIS (QGIS  is  underway),  2)  i18n, we've localized gvSIG, GRASS,
QGIS,  Geoserver,  3)  Data  -  very  critical issue, we've focused on
creating  really  free datasets like a localized database on populated
places,  translation of GNS and alike 4) Tools support - we contribute
to  several  tools that we actively use: QGIS (including programming),
other   OS   tools   -   bugreporting  5)  Articles-articles-articles,
overwhelmingly using OS software lately.

Overall  our  goal  is  to  provide  a framework for collaboration and
discussion,  focusing on independecy and solid results. We have around
2000  (1+  posts)  registered  users  at  our forum, similar number of
subscribers  of our maillist and around 3000 hits every day. Of course
the core group is smaller ;)

Finally  and  that  is  why  I enquired about non-OSGeo groups. We are
willing  to  collaborate  with  OSGeo  in  all  ways possible and will
continue our work in this field regardless of what organizational form
it will take again stressing vendor-type free concept.

Wow, that was a long email and it was fun trying to summarize everything
we've done in few words :)


ACO> On Wed, September 30, 2009 18:49, Maxim Dubinin wrote:
>> Hi
>> Local OSGeo chapters are great, but how about existing non-OSGeo groups?
>> Does OSGeo have a strategy to
>> build communication with them?
>> Maxim

ACO> Maxim,
ACO> yes, OSGeo's intent it to embrace and support existing organizations with
ACO> the same vision instead of being exclusive. There is a Wiki page with some
ACO> links and always happy to be updated:
ACO> http://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/Like_Minded_Regional_Organizations

ACO> Please also feel free to introduce OSGeo to organizations that have not
ACO> yet stumbled across us.

ACO> In Germany the existing Free Software Geospatial organization FOSSGIS e.V.
ACO> (then named "GRASS user's group") meanwhile has become the official OSGeo
ACO> Local Chapter and we are working on the same goals and appear jointly at
ACO> conferences, trade fairs, organize hack sprints, etc. It is a lively
ACO> community and growing strong. It did take some time to work out the
ACO> details as is always the case with integrating existing organizations but
ACO> now all seem to be quite happy with it.

ACO> Best regards,
ACO> Arnulf.

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