Remote Mapping Quality Control

Scaling up a field mapping project within a city of over 5 million people requires proper planning and training. We first wanted to give our field mappers a thorough overview of how data is inputted into OSM to ensure a clear understanding of the OSM ecosystem and how it works. At a later stage, we will be showing them how OSM data can be used for several different purposes. Teaching 300 new mappers how to map, however, comes with certain challenges. All of our mappers have been beginners, and most of them have…Read more

Mapping At Scale

The new and expanded Ramani Huria 2.0 team, with just over three hundred students, is now getting to work with the practical work of field data collection and editing the digital map of Dar es Salaam. We've installed OpenDataKit (ODK), a free software toolset for data collection on Android smartphones. We'll be using some more sophisticated data collection systems such as OpenMapKit, a variant of ODK that allows direct interaction with OpenStreetMap data, but the venerable and mighty original ODK is a great place to start. We begin with practice surveys at in…Read more

Three Hundred Students to Map for Flood Resilience in Dar es Salaam

The Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) and Ramani Huria, supported by the World Bank and partners are launching a brand-new adventure with Ardhi University today! Three hundred Urban Planning and Geomatics students from Ardhi University in Dar es Salaam are participating in a community mapping project in July and August. We will be mapping in 35 wards of the city, with an emphasis on the data needed to improve flood resilience. With the increasing impact of climate change and urbanization, urban flooding increasingly disrupts and threatens the lives of people in Dar es Salaam.…Read more

WEOs Discuss Map Use Beyond Flood Resilience

On 28th February 2017, Ramani Huria held its 2nd community engagement workshop at Tanzania Data Lab (dLab). The workshop comprised of Ward Executive Officers (WEOs) from the community mapped wards of Dar es Salaam where maps were produced by the local community to help decision makers in their planning for flood mitigation and other issues. This workshop was called as a follow-up of the 1st community workshop that was held in October 2016 and involved 10 ward officers from Tandale, Ndugumbi, Buguruni, Vingunguti, Magomeni, Hananasif, Mzimuni, Manzese, Mwananyamala and Kigogo. The participants this…Read more

Ground surveying as a community process

In Ramani Huria’s ground survey mapping activities, community members have always been part and parcel of the process. Their presence has consistently led to greater success and timely completion of mapping within their respective wards/areas. Why do we collaborate with community members? There are several reasons as to why Ramani Huria prefers to train community members to serve as mappers. To describe a few: They have local knowledge of the area within which they live. This means they know the ins and outs of the places being mapped due to the fact that…Read more

How to: Map creation of static maps with QGIS

When creating maps, you can either create static maps (which stay fixed, for example to print paper copies of a map) or dynamic maps (which are updated as the source material is updated, i.e. whenever OpenStreetMap (OSM) is updated, and are accessed digitally with an internet connection). All of our maps draw data from OpenStreetMap and all of the data we collect is uploaded to this platform. To create static maps, Ramani Huria uses the GIS software, QGIS, and to create dynamic maps, often known as ‘Slippy Maps’, we use Mapbox Studio. In…Read more

How to: QGIS and InaSAFE

QGIS is a full-featured, open-source, cross-platform Geographic Information System (GIS). The software has been developed by volunteers from the free and open-source software (FOSS) community and thus is well in-line with Ramani Huria’s approach of using open source tools whenever possible. QGIS runs on Linux, Unix, Mac OSX, Windows and Android and supports numerous vector, raster, and database formats and functionalities. QGIS also supports a number of plugins that can offer a user many additional features. One of these plugins is InaSAFE. InaSAFE is a plugin for QGIS that produces realistic natural hazard…Read more

Maps for Saving Lives: a revival of Maptime Tanzania

On January 28th, 25 volunteers, colleagues, students, and partners gathered at Tanzania Data Lab (dLab) for a Maptime event hosted by Ramani Huria. The event commenced at 10 am and its eager attendees lingered well past its scheduled end time at 1pm. The main objective of this mapathon was to identify buildings and roads in the Shinyanga District to support those working on the PEPFAR HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment initiative. With this area mapped, PEPFAR and its stakeholders will better be able to establish how communities are connected by roads to understand whether…Read more

Ramani Huria trains secondary students during STEM boot camp

Over the first week of January 2017, a group of 60 secondary school students gathered at Marian University College, Bagamoyo for a ground-breaking training session - the Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Youth Boot Camp organised by Projekt Inspire in collaboration with the Ramani Huria team. These students, hailing from different regions of Tanzania (Dar es Salaam, Moshi, Arusha, Mbeya, to name a few), were there to be introduced to GIS and web mapping. STEM Youth Boot Camps are a Projekt Inspire initiative. This initiative helps to improve the quality of secondary…Read more

How to: Ground Survey Mapping with Aerial Imagery

The ground survey mapping process undertaken by the Ramani Huria team depends upon high quality aerial imagery. Mappers collect data on site with the help of the field papers produced by drone images (mbtiles) that offer direction and location to the mapper. Equipped with GPS units, Ramani Huria team members mapped all city centre wards using this approach. These include Kivukoni, Kisutu, Kariakoo, Jangwani, Gerezani, Mchafukoge, Upanga Mashariki and Upanga Magharibi. Ground survey process with the help of aerial imagery First visit the fieldpapers website and make field papers for the area upon…Read more