[OSGeo-Discuss] [Geo4All] Vision for an OSGeo education program

Randal Hale rjhale at northrivergeographic.com
Sat Oct 29 07:01:45 PDT 2016

I've been trying to keep up with the emails. A few more thoughts:

  * Social Media is a large part of this. So I'm going to dive in
    somewhere. The kids these days like their "LOLs" and their whatever
    else they are doing. I always ask when I go talk to a school what
    the social media platform is of choice. Facebook and Twitter are
    dropping. Google Plus was never on their radar. Instagram seems to
    be a "thing" currently. I know these are closed platforms - and
    nothing beats a web page - but it's outreach. Linkedin May help us
    bring in more teachers.

  *   I would suggest curated datasets free of Projection nightmares.
    Projections need to be explained - but keep it simple. All the data
    needs to line up - if not that's a part of the Teachers "lesson
    plans" - "You found some data but it doesn't match - email this list
    or talk to people in this "social media area"" and see if they can
    help. I wouldn't be worried about topology, or attribution spelling
    mistakes, or anything complicated  - it just lines up.

  * Web needs to be a part of this. I saw further down web was
    mentioned. Maybe a lesson is "load this data on a web map". So we
    find a place to do this - and mapstory may be it. Maybe a class
    project goes there? Something to think about.

  * Proprietary software will always be in the mix somewhere. ESRI is a
    good platform. I love Fulcrum for mobile. At some point kids/adults
    will use everything - hopefully we convey the "happiness" of open
    source and make them want to contribute back.

I'm "sort of helping" with outreach with FOSS4G Boston. Although I would 
love to have something before August of 2017 - Maybe we outreach to 
educators. They don't have to be GIS Savvy or even GIS people. Maybe 
Geography. Maybe Computer Science. Maybe a teacher "who was trying to 
find a pub and saw all of us standing around".

This will be a good thing. My Canoe is calling me and the weather is 
pleasant! I must be off for a bit.


On 10/29/2016 08:44 AM, Charlie Schweik wrote:
> Hi all,
> We have a grant proposal under review right now that, if funded, would 
> allow us to have regular meetings over the next four years at FOSS4G 
> Europe with both an education and research focus. It's always a long 
> shot that this will come in, but this is a proposal that we have 
> submitted and revised several times now. We probably won't hear until 
> January or February. But regardless, we should start to think about 
> what we can do on this front at FOSS4G 2017 (Boston) and at the next 
> FOSS4G Europe conference.
> But this discussion is starting to develop a framework for moving 
> forward on this front. I'm going to save them and cross our fingers 
> that this funding comes in. But even if it doesn't, I think we should 
> consider developing panels at FOSS4G that builds toward these ideas.
> Cheers,
> Charlie
> On Fri, Oct 28, 2016 at 3:30 PM, Cameron Shorter 
> <cameron.shorter at gmail.com <mailto:cameron.shorter at gmail.com>> wrote:
>     <changing email title to a solution focus>
>     Randal,
>     I love your OSGeo educational vision. Its practical, it has a
>     clear vision, it sounds achievable, it is something which could
>     start small and then scale, and I think it has the potential to
>     inspire people to contribute to it. If it attracts a few motivated
>     and driven contributors, I believe it has all the hallmarks of a
>     successful Open Source project [1]. I want in!
>     I can also help out with setting up processes and reviewing
>     documentation.
>     I think the first step to work out is our vision, and then clearly
>     define our first few releases, ensuring they are achievable.
>     Randal, you've made a great start on that. Maybe something like:
>     * Simple for teachers to use.
>     * Focus on quality over quantity
>     * Has clear teaching goals.
>     * Makes use of cool, inspiring use cases that kids will connect
>     with and find relevant.
>     * Maybe a really engaging use case would be to allow kids to add
>     the school's basketball hoop to Open Street Map, and then know
>     that their contribution will be around forever
>     * Re content, are there national or international learning guides
>     we can trace back to? If proprietary vendors are linking back to
>     these, and we do the same, it will provide opportunities for
>     teachers to mix-and-match classes, similar to switching
>     applications which all access datasets using the same WMS standard.
>     One of the key requirements we are going to need is user feedback.
>     Having teachers report back on the success of their classes,
>     describing what they'd like to achieve so that we can help
>     implement it for them. Randal, as you appear to have already built
>     that connection, I suggest you'd be the best person to start
>     defining what the first classes should look like?
>     What should be our first target audience? What age group? Who is
>     prepared to drive that?
>     [1]
>     http://cameronshorter.blogspot.com.au/2011/06/memoirs-of-cat-herder-coordinating.html
>     <http://cameronshorter.blogspot.com.au/2011/06/memoirs-of-cat-herder-coordinating.html>
>     On 29/10/2016 1:54 AM, Randal Hale wrote:
>>     The way I look at it - and this is from watching Teachers at the
>>     school: Imagine getting a disk full of software. Have a colleague
>>     come over and repeatedly poke you in the head while you try to
>>     figure out what is on the disk and where the instructions are. In
>>     a few more minutes have someone come over and start singing while
>>     you are getting poked in the head. Maybe someone pours water in
>>     your shoe in another 2 minutes.
>>     It needs to be that simple. That's what the ESRI folk are doing
>>     "Lessons, 'free', and here is the Documentation".
>>     Simple: software, x directories with x lessons.
>>     A giant Red button with "Don't Panic" in nice friendly letters.
>>     On 10/28/2016 10:39 AM, Angelos Tzotsos wrote:
>>>     So according to Randal, to reach out to schools we need a
>>>     scaled-down and lighter OSGeo-Live build (probably without the
>>>     server side applications), with different documentation
>>>     included. Maybe based on Edubuntu?
>>>     I volunteer to make a custom OSGeo-Live iso for kids, but we
>>>     will need lots of feedback and volunteers to shape up a new
>>>     documentation.
>>>     Last year I had the chance to teach several hours of
>>>     OpenStreetMap to school kids in a municipality initiative and I
>>>     can totally agree that things are different with kids. They did
>>>     not seem to have much difficulty with the OSGeo-Live UI, but we
>>>     ended up playing with iD and less with desktop applications,
>>>     like josm.
>>>     just my 2c
>>>     Angelos
>>>     On 10/28/2016 04:55 PM, Randal Hale wrote:
>>>>     If I can just chime in (I told my cat I wasn't).
>>>>     The kicker in this is ESRI is deeply entrenched everywhere.
>>>>     They've entire groups of people just focused on "giving to
>>>>     schools". I was at the helm of rolling out a full ESRI rollout
>>>>     to a school in 2012. We had a 50 seat lab setup. I ended up
>>>>     moving them over to FOSS4G 2 years ago - and I need to go back
>>>>     and update their setup (they don't know how). The school is
>>>>     Title 1 (which means the school is very poor). The computers
>>>>     are better than what they normally get - BUT - they will be
>>>>     using them longer than what they need to. They will be unable
>>>>     to run the next version of ESRI Software. The computers can
>>>>     still run FOSS4G software.
>>>>     The teachers here in the US (and I have no doubt this is the
>>>>     case everywhere) are stretched thin. That's what makes ESRI so
>>>>     nice. They show up and go "here is a curriculum (of sorts) and
>>>>     here is 'free' software". It's a short term win. They have
>>>>     people targeted to do just that.
>>>>     So what would Randy do (and I've thought about this more than I
>>>>     care to mention) to introduce FOSS4G into the schools:
>>>>     A bootable disk with FOSS4G software (I am partial to QGIS -
>>>>     other things exist) and not everything like the OSGEO Disk. A
>>>>     few select pieces of software with a purpose:
>>>>      * 10 lessons of 1 hour apiece to work through that are student
>>>>        oriented (maybe pick an age range - 12-16)
>>>>          o Start globally and work down to locally. Maybe we have
>>>>     different
>>>>            local datasets.
>>>>      * An explanation for the teachers. They don't understand like
>>>>     we do -
>>>>        they need us there for hand holding and encouragement. They can
>>>>        manage kids - We need to help manage the lessons. I'm not a
>>>>     teacher.
>>>>        I can teach adults - but not kids - it's a whole different 
>>>>     game.
>>>>      * A spot where teachers can get the lessons (NOT GITHUB) and
>>>>     the disk
>>>>        (maybe we combine all things into a bootable USB stick).
>>>>      * Help - a place where they can get help (NOT GITHUB). My town
>>>>     has 30+
>>>>        schools. If more than 1 does this I can't be everywhere.
>>>>     ESRI put
>>>>        out a call for Geomentors. We put out a call.
>>>>      * We have COMMUNITY - I don't believe ESRI currently does.
>>>>     They have
>>>>        an advertising budget. 20 years ago they had community. We have
>>>>        momentum now. Community is greater than an Advertising budget.
>>>>      * Advertise it. Ask for help from the teachers.
>>>>      * Update it.
>>>>     I know I'm asking for a lot - it's time intensive - but I think
>>>>     it's 100% doable. I go to speak at 2 colleges on GIS Day on
>>>>     nothing but FOSS4G.
>>>>     We've got all the pieces to make this work except time. I'll
>>>>     carve out some time if this gets going.
>>>>     I wished the cat had stopped me. Now I'm in it.
>     On 29/10/2016 12:56 AM, SERGIO ACOSTAYLARA wrote:
>>     Thank you Jeff for your great answer to my ¿call? It's a pity the Geo4all Teacher Training and School Education Thematic Group (http://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/GeoForAll_TeacherTraining_SchoolEducation
>>     <http://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/GeoForAll_TeacherTraining_SchoolEducation>) isn't as active as I think it should be as I find it's the group that can best answer to this "huge opportunity" as you call it. Sure Bridget is doing great work and we need to publicise it much more. We here are also doing hard work in order to disseminate the use of FOSS4G in schools (post -in Spanish- about last news:https://gvsigbatovi.wordpress.com/2016/10/25/jornada-taller-en-ceibal-y-creacion-de-equipo-de-seguimiento-gvsig-batovi/
>>     <https://gvsigbatovi.wordpress.com/2016/10/25/jornada-taller-en-ceibal-y-creacion-de-equipo-de-seguimiento-gvsig-batovi/>) but we surely need to work harder. It is not an easy task but it deserves doing the effort. It`s scaring to know that "youth -only- learn what ESRI means". We all know this provision of free ArcGIS online organization accounts to all K-12 schools in the US (note this: ALL K-12 SCHOOLS) is not at all philanthropic. Cameron, I agree with your idea and I can help with it.
>>     Regards,
>>     Sergio Acosta y Lara
>>     Departamento de Geomática
>>     Dirección Nacional de Topografía
>>     Ministerio de Transporte y Obras Públicas
>>     URUGUAY
>>     (598)29157933 ints. 20329/20330
>>     http://geoportal.mtop.gub.uy/
>>     ________________________________________
>>     De: Discuss<discuss-bounces at lists.osgeo.org>
>>     <mailto:discuss-bounces at lists.osgeo.org>  en nombre de Jeff McKenna<jmckenna at gatewaygeomatics.com>
>>     <mailto:jmckenna at gatewaygeomatics.com>
>>     Enviado: jueves, 27 de octubre de 2016 21:34
>>     Para:discuss at lists.osgeo.org <mailto:discuss at lists.osgeo.org>
>>     Asunto: Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Sharing sad news from the web...
>>     Maybe what we are missing are the existing OSGeo-led education labs
>>     inside highschools - I was cooking now and thought of the great work
>>     being done by Bridget Fleming with the South African highschool
>>     geography teachers.  How can we publish and share this great work, and
>>     spread that out to other highschools around the world - can OSGeo's
>>     Geo4All committee make that its focus now?
>>     Anyway, 'food' for thought!
>>     Thank you again Sergio for bringing this to everyone's attention.
>>     Night all,
>>     -jeff
>>     On 2016-10-27 6:04 PM, Jeff McKenna wrote:
>>>     >Hi Sergio,
>>>     >
>>>     >Thank you for sharing this news.
>>>     >
>>>     >I'd like to take this opportunity to take a moment for us, our
>>>     >foundation, to look in the mirror.  Like this article points out
>>>     >strongly (yet indirectly), we still have much work to do to reach the
>>>     >youth of today and tomorrow. And I don't mean the United States or any
>>>     >one country, as I see this in my own backyard in Canada and everywhere I
>>>     >travel for OSGeo: a focus on universities and industry (where the money
>>>     >and funding is), and a pure lack of focus on those fresh energetic and
>>>     >unbiased minds of youth in highschool and middleschool.  I see it each
>>>     >year in the Geo4All day (or PostGIS day, or GISDay, whatever we all call
>>>     >it) where events are held for university students and industry
>>>     >professionals, all over the world - the problem is those attendees of
>>>     >the events already know the thrill of the Open community, of geospatial,
>>>     >of our passion.  We miss the focus on today's youth.
>>>     >
>>>     >I always tried to speak to the back row of the theatre, to sing to those
>>>     >at the very back too shy to come forward yet so eager to be part of the
>>>     >spotlight, part of the community, and I put much focus on those rarely
>>>     >heard of communities and countries around the world, giving them the
>>>     >spotlight and the microphone to shine and grow and be seen and heard on
>>>     >the world stage - well, the time is now for us to give that spotlight to
>>>     >the youth as well.
>>>     >
>>>     >Now that Geo4All is the official education committee for the OSGeo
>>>     >foundation, we can use that committee to tackle this huge hole, or
>>>     >rather this huge opportunity.  Maybe the Geo4All committee feels that
>>>     >they are indeed handling this already, in the highschools etc, and this
>>>     >message can help Geo4All promote and recruit more champions for their
>>>     >existing work.  Great!  I'd like to hear of our equivalent for this
>>>     >ConnectED initiative by Esri, focusing on the youth (and not directly on
>>>     >universities), of how youth learn what "OSGeo" is, what "OSGeo" means -
>>>     >as this article strongly points out, youth learn what "Esri" means,
>>>     >indeed Esri continues to do great work and focus on that huge future
>>>     >market of youth.  But what are we doing as the OSGeo foundation? Talking
>>>     >here about that can help build this momentum.
>>>     >
>>>     >Just how many highschools and middle schools are involved in our Geo4All
>>>     >initiative by OSGeo's education committee?  Can someone come up with a
>>>     >total from the list of current labs?
>>>     >https://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/Edu_current_initiatives
>>>     <https://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/Edu_current_initiatives>   What does that
>>>     >total tell us?  How can we improve on that total?
>>>     >
>>>     >I actually was on the stage and handed an award to about 4 highschool
>>>     >students in person at the FOSS4G-Europe event in Como last year, on
>>>     >behalf of OSGeo; I saw their passion and spoke with them right after the
>>>     >session, they were thrilled to be included in this community.
>>>     >This was an award led by the Geo4All committee, so, this is an example
>>>     >of their great work with the youth of today - but I bet few knew of that
>>>     >award, well we can hopefully change that here through Sergio's wakeup
>>>     >message.
>>>     >
>>>     >I hope this message brings all those passionate leaders out there in
>>>     >OSGeo's Geo4All committee here, with their great examples of their work,
>>>     >and we can use this news shared by Sergio to help change this myth that
>>>     >OSGeo isn't a part of the youth activities today, get more press on the
>>>     >great work by the Geo4All committee of OSGeo (as mentioned by Cameron),
>>>     >and gather more champions to keep spreading our passion to the youth of
>>>     >tomorrow - as I've said many times, we're currently hiring champions
>>>     >
>>>     >-jeff
>>>>     On 10/28/2016 09:16 AM, Jeff McKenna wrote:
>>>>>     As if someone is reading this ha, a tweet just came across my
>>>>>     desk:
>>>>>     https://twitter.com/GIS4Teachers/status/791981572991746048
>>>>>     <https://twitter.com/GIS4Teachers/status/791981572991746048>
>>>>>     So, we need to also get into that huge K-12 market, plant the
>>>>>     open seed early :)  A challenge indeed. Think on this over the
>>>>>     weekend, -jeff On 2016-10-27 12:36 PM, SERGIO ACOSTAYLARA wrote:
>>>>>>     Sadly, only ESRI seems to exist for some in the USA...Imagine
>>>>>>     the consequences of this:
>>>>>>     http://www.pobonline.com/articles/100610-gathering-up-geospatial-pros-to-meet-massive-market-growth
>>>>>>     <http://www.pobonline.com/articles/100610-gathering-up-geospatial-pros-to-meet-massive-market-growth>
>>>>>>     ​ Sergio Acosta y Lara Departamento de Geomática Dirección
>>>>>>     Nacional de Topografía Ministerio de Transporte y Obras
>>>>>>     Públicas URUGUAY (598)29157933 ints. 20329/20330
>>>>>>     http://geoportal.mtop.gub.uy/ 
>>>>>     _______________________________________________ Discuss
>>>>>     mailing list Discuss at lists.osgeo.org
>>>>>     <mailto:Discuss at lists.osgeo.org>
>>>>>     http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss
>>>>>     <http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss> 
>>>>     _______________________________________________
>>>>     Discuss mailing list
>>>>     Discuss at lists.osgeo.org <mailto:Discuss at lists.osgeo.org>
>>>>     http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss
>>>>     <http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss>
>>>     -- 
>>>     Angelos Tzotsos, PhD
>>>     OSGeo Charter Member
>>>     http://users.ntua.gr/tzotsos
>>>     _______________________________________________
>>>     Discuss mailing list
>>>     Discuss at lists.osgeo.org <mailto:Discuss at lists.osgeo.org>
>>>     http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss
>>>     <http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss>
>>     -- 
>>     -----------------
>>     Randal Hale
>>     North River Geographic Systems, Inc
>>     http://www.northrivergeographic.com
>>     <http://www.northrivergeographic.com>
>>     423.653.3611 <tel:423.653.3611>  rjhale at northrivergeographic.com
>>     <mailto:rjhale at northrivergeographic.com>
>>     twitter:rjhale
>>     _______________________________________________
>>     Discuss mailing list
>>     Discuss at lists.osgeo.org <mailto:Discuss at lists.osgeo.org>
>>     http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss
>>     <http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss>
>     -- 
>     Cameron Shorter
>     M+61 419 142 254 <tel:%2B61%20419%20142%20254>
>     _______________________________________________ GeoForAll mailing
>     list GeoForAll at lists.osgeo.org <mailto:GeoForAll at lists.osgeo.org>
>     http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/geoforall
>     <http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/geoforall> 
> -- 
> Charlie Schweik
> Professor, Department of Environmental Conservation &
> Interim Director of the School of Public Policy,
> University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Randal Hale
North River Geographic Systems, Inc
423.653.3611 rjhale at northrivergeographic.com
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.osgeo.org/pipermail/discuss/attachments/20161029/9c25b1cd/attachment-0002.html>

More information about the Discuss mailing list