Dear members of the TransforMap and Intermapping communities.
We would like to invite again for a general reconciliation, a recapture of what we did together in the last years, embedded into a small celebration of our achievements. We would also like to invite our partners from the global networks that we touch, and support them in their developments towards a federation of maps and mappings.
In reaching out to possible venues, we asked WikimediaBerlin. They would like to know how many participants we can expect. Therefore I am polling here to get an impression of the expectable interest:
Would you personally like to participate in an event about TransforMap and Intermapping during one of the weekends in November?
We were strong together in 2014 and 2015, but the expectations and difficulties with actually building the system made us aware of the long tail of infrastructure, but also of the many connections we made in reaching out to cartographers of alternative economies.
In concluding and continuing our work from the last years, the need to come together to exchange experiences and practices has never ceased. After a series of development rounds, we have made peculiar experiences about what it means to build and maintain a mapping commons. Which always starts with you as our community.
There are many many maps to show alternatives to the hegemonic economic system. They are often produced in a volunteered manner.
This is a socio-technical praxis, which involves digital cartography with the discourses around Care, Commons, Degrowth and Social and Solidarity Economy.
The maps, the mappings and their stewards aim at showing an ongoing socio-ecological transition.
The core hypothesis is: A map of all alternative economies will attract further populations to a socio-ecological way of life. This will be achieved by providing pointers at concrete urban and rural interaction points, where people can follow their curiosity to learn (1) about solving their needs, other than by engaging with competitive economies, or (2) about adapting to climate change in a communal manner. The purpose is to change our everyday practice for sustaining long-term survival of the earth system, its biotopes and our societies.
We find ourselves building a centre in an otherwise centreless mesh of contacts and interactions. This cooperation is often geographically enclosed by language borders. Even though contacts are mediated by technologies, in times of ambience and ubiquituous computing, the means of communication, and therefore production, are often choosen from and enclosed by corporate offers.
Conclusion: A network initiative of progressive mapping communities that strives to produce informative resources about self-organisation, spatial practices and contemporary means of communication needs to work within tight constraints. Naming these constraints and providing educational material about good practices on how to meet them can help the whole ecosystem to work towards the common goal, finding sustainable transition pathways.
Target German-speaking community for TransforMap.
Target English-speaking network for Intermapping.
Conduct a general assembly of the TransforMap community.
Reach out to the global Intermapping network.
Provide an online track to include distant partners.
Write documentation in English for the greatest chance of reusability.
How to finish with the initial promise, to show all alternatives on one map?
How to open up to the global Intermapping community?
A prolonged weekend in November 2018 for 3 to 4 days.
To establish a holistic view on the diverse needs to be fulfilled, experience tells us to investigate the following three main trajectories:
Community building Solve the needs of a community. Establishing an inclusive process around the harvest and definition of a shared goal involves lots of Communication and Documentation. While Events support direct, peer to peer interaction, articles and public discourse increase participatory decision making and overall visbility of outcomes. The resulting Documentation presents Good Practices in the form of user-facing How Tos, a canonical Glossary und aids developers with technical specifications around the used Softwares.
Software development Fund teams not projects. For a group of developers to engage in user-centric design, it is predominant to sustain their basic needs first. Once these are met, only then they can engage in User Research, pass through phases of Prototyping and Evaluation of experiments, develop documentation around Methodologies, Standards and Licences and ultimately develop the tools the communities ask for.
Infrastructure maintenance Make it work easily. Provisioning an infrastructure comes at the price of ideally being invisible to the users. Yet many requirements need to be met in terms of Privacy and Security as well as more fundamental Legal and Hardware set ups. The maintainers come with their own respective set of framings to be able to provide Support and Care for Shared Platforms. The Accessibility of the tools and reactiveness through a Help Desk greatly depends on recognising their role actively.
Subsequently we are asked to provide a preliminary list of partners, groups and communities from the field, and how we want to adress them. Additionally, an agenda can be in collectively perpared until the event.
Who would like to join the preparations? We are invited to come to Wikimedia on August 13th, which could be a good plateau for collecting our shared interest in this.
By coincidence, I am going to be in Berlin from November 7 to 11.
I might be able to join the TransforMap general assembly, in case it takes place the days before that (from Nov. 3rd…). Those are the only days I have available in November for now.
thanks for leaving a few words. I’m happy to continue on the path as proposed.
Including the constraint to not collide with Bits & Bäume, eventually wanting to present the outcomes of our weekend there (new idea), and your availability Sara, I think we can already condense the dates onto Nov 2nd to 4th.
Are there any objections to this conclusion?
Please present them until 07.08.2018, to allow for paceful preparation. Else I will proceed communicating these dates, assuming general consent.
The General Assembly, other than the Intermapping, needs to address and decidedly targets the German-speaking audience from DACH countries, since we need to close our own loop, and is proposed to happen on Friday. This will have to be made more explicit in subsequent invitation waves.
Therefore arriving on the 3rd for the outernational Intermapping is just perfect: It will get you the fresh learnings from understanding the first four years in building this infrastructure, and will allow us to weave these experiences into opening up the global context.
thank you for the tremendous responses in the poll. It will prove a good foundation for the meeting next Monday with Wikimedia in Berlin. Whoever is around town then, and interested in preparing this event, is kindly invited to join:
Tempelhofer Ufer 23/24
Simon, thanks for tuning in again! I have heard you made good progress on the semantic bus, which is one of many data transformation engines we know. There have also been requests privately that ask for preparation of travels and accomodation funding.
probably did not get much attention from others with ideas, yet, but I will poke certain possible sources of support next week when we are preparing the official announcement.
Hi Helmut, I’m interested in seeing things from your point of view. What could such a clear and concrete objective look like in a field as diverse as ours, and how could I test if the objective has positive impact for endusers in advance? It may be that we’re requiring the outcome of the process as an input here, and need to look at it in another way.
For TransforMap, I had declared technical domains of work in the Quo vadis? post. Where would be your focus, in so we finally get the Atlas, data ingestion, transformation and storage as well as the geographic visualisation altogether?
Basically, we’re right now lacking a community process that is actively trying to find answers to such questions. The assembly would one of the means to reenforce this trajectory.
I am unfortunate to inform the fellow readers of this conversation and already onboarded @Intermapping articipants, that the dates we had initially anticipated are no longer available at Wikimedia. The last weeks were very busy for me and I did not manage to follow up on the Wikimedia’s questions regarding such an event. Admittedly they already informed us about the tight schedule we subscribed to, given there is no program yet.
Since the Wikimedia Foundation would very much like to support our activities, to help us preparing the neccessities they requested:
An overview of current communities and partners occupying themselves with Intermapping
During the conversations I held during this summer, the idea came up to separate the harvest of individuals and collectives related to Intermapping into two groups: into those who would sign a Letter of Support that expresses idealistic interest in the general subject, and those who commit to actively prepare and engage in Intermapping activities, by signing a Letter of Intent. By doing so, these groups would also indicate that they would be available in forming eventual project consortia.
Since @Silke could not be with us anyway, this is maybe not the worst outcome.
Yet she also announced to be available again from December 15 onwards. Keeping this in mind, we’re left with week 51, from December 17 to 21, weekend to 23, if we wish to come together in 2018 again.
If anybody wishes to help out in preparing this any further, please speak up! I have come to the limits of my voluntary capacity trying to keep this community alive, and cannot commit more than already. A supporting hand from the community would be very much appreciated.
and sorry from my side to be so inactive in the moment.
i have diffrent projects quite far from stable internet-access
and so mostly i appreciate a lot what s going on as activities
but i am not able to join or contribute a lot in the moment.
but i am sure that we have the right spirit and aim to bring
the mapstuff forward step by step - so we shouldn’t give up at
all and keep moving as much as possible for every single one
of us !
best wishes to everybody,
ps still keeping the funny black-and-white-picture done in italy
in the machine with some of us in my wallet and each time i see it
i remember the happy and productive days we had in florence and around
I’m sorry to hear about the postponement, but I understand the reasons. On my side, I would like to help, but I don’t see how I can do it remotely from France for an event that would take place in Germany (I don’t speak German either!).
Anyway, I think it’s important to use the available resources: if it is not possible at the moment to organize a new event, it does not seem so serious to me. We will wait for a more appropriate time with people who have the energy and/or time.
Thank you for what you give @almereyda
In addition, I can also share with you that at the last French “Intermapping” (called Synergie numérique), we discussed the idea of merging our activity with that of the Intermapping group. I don’t know if it’s feasible or desirable, but in any case I share!
unfortunately this communication place electronically excluded @Silke’s response from this conversation¹. I am regretfully sorry, since the drawback was known in advance, but not addressed, yet. From a call with her yesterday I took that she’s most busy, and also a chat with @TDoennebrink at Haus des Wandels this weekend kind of confirmed, that we must ultimately split away Intermapping processes from TransforMap. The original community of initiators and activists is nowadays occupied with other projects, and Ecobytes is left with the long-term operation and maintenance. A reconvergence of this group ought not to be our concern here anymore.
In the other direction, Wikimedia is constantly asking if we wouldn’t finally want to submit our application and plans. They are really interested in getting to know this ominous Intermapping community. I have promised to deliver a draft of it by this week.
¹ She changed an email address and replying to forwarded notifications would not work anymore. This is now most probably addressed by changing the address in the user profile here.
A draft for an application towards Wikimedia lives now in
Please note this mentions total costs of ~ EUR 10.000,00 due to their conservative estimation for travel costs (only within Germany).
We may wish to talk to our partners HBS, RLS, FES, FPH, anstiftung etc. to diversify income sources for this one. Also I have no experiences in preparation travels and accomodation for so many people. If you know how to proceed, please help out.
how is it going with preparing the intermapping meeting?
I somewhat turned my back on mapping, until recently, I was asked to write an article for an Austrian NGO on the topic. As one of the possible follow ups for interested people, I mentioned this stream here, as the next chance for a physical meeting.
How is it going? @almereyda did you find collaborators in making this endeavour a reality?