State of the map 2017. Photo by Takehiro Watannabe‎, CC BY-SA 4.0.

Milan, Italy will be the host for State of the Map (SOTM), the annual OpenStreetMap community gathering, in 2018.

The conference will be organized by Wikimedia Italy (Italia) and the Polytechnic University of Milan (Politecnico di Milano, Polimi), the largest technical university in Italy, after they submitted a joint proposal.

The event will take place from 28 to 30 July 2018 and will be hosted on Polimi’s university campus. It will bring together at least 400 participants from 5 continents, including several community members from emerging communities supported by the SOTM Scholarship Program.

Polimi has put great effort in fostering the advancement of OpenStreetMap in recent years, developing projects based on OSM and promoting training, research activities, mapathons and initiatives like PoliMappers.

State of the Map 2018 will aim to enhance the collaboration between the Wikimedia and OpenStreetMap communities, who will join forces to showcase their efforts to promote open and free culture.

Wikimedia Italy started laying the groundwork for the event by working with the Wikimedia and OSM communities in Italy. This included a joint effort with Fondazione BEIC to geocode the photos of the Paolo Monti photographic archive, released under a free license by Fondazione BEIC on Wikimedia Commons. The photos helped make a prototype map that shows how libraries and heritage institutions could use OpenStreetMap with Wikimedia projects to provide an alternative way of browsing their collections. At Wikimania 2017, the project was called out as one of the “coolest projects” developed by an independent Wikimedia chapter.

And Wikimedia Italy is continuing to support these data-growing projects: one of our main objectives for 2017 is to increase the coverage of house numbers and street names to facilitate routing. Between January and April 2017, we reached a big goal by adding over a million house numbers for Emilia-Romagna.

In the next few weeks, Wikimedia Italy and Polimi will start event organization work with the SOTM Committee: one of the first steps in our plan is launching a contest to choose a logo and build visual identity guidelines for the event. Conference updates will be available on the SOTM and Wikimedia Italy websites.

Francesca Ussani, Communications Manager
Wikimedia Italia

In brief

2018 Wikimedia Conference dates are announced: Wikimedia Germany (Deutschland, WMDE) has announced the dates and plans for hosting the 2018 Wikimedia Conference. WMDE is the independent chapter that supports the Wikimedia movement in the country, and the conference is the annual meeting for all Wikimedia organizations around the world; the chapter has expressed their intention to continue hosting and supporting the conference in Berlin. A report about the learned lessons from hosting the conference in Berlin in 2015–2017 will be published by Wikimedia Germany by the end of October. More details can be found on Wikimedia-l.

Editathon on the Western Ghats biodiversity in India: The Malayalam Wikipedia community and the College of Forestry, in Kerala Agricultural University, have hosted an editing workshop that aims at improving the Malayalam Wikipedia content on on Biodiversity of Western Ghats in Malayalam. The organizers shared their experience with the event.

2018 Wikimedia developer summit basic plans announced: The Wikimedia Developer Summit 2018 will be held on 22 and 23 January in San Francisco, California. The program and call for participation will be shared with the public shortly; the organizers have shared their basic plans and are inviting the developer community to share their thoughts to help make a successful meetup. “We invite technologists, managers and users to study, reflect and propose ways to support the strategic vision we are committed to. We would like you to capture your thoughts in a short position statement and join the conversation,” says Victoria Coleman, the Foundation’s Chief Technology Officer, in an email to Wikimedia-l.

Armenian Wikipedia milestone: Last week, the Armenian Wikipedia community celebrated their 230,000th article on Wikipedia. The Armenian Wikipedia community and Wikimedia Armenia, the independent Wikimedia chapter, have been exerting great efforts to recruit and support new participants in their community, primarily, their WikiCamps, which mixed editing and fun to encourage young learners to participate in editing Wikipedia.

Affiliations update: Last week, the Wikimedia Affiliations Committee (AffCom) announced the de-recognition of Wikimedia Macedonia, a now-former Wikimedia independent chapter. The chapter had been notified by AffCom in February about the guidelines and requirements they need to go through to keep their chapter recognition. Details on that decision can be found on Wikimedia-l and information about movement affiliation de-recognition can be found on Meta-Wiki.

New board for Wikimedia Argentina: Last Saturday, the General Assembly of Wikimedia Argentina convened to hold the chapter’s board elections. More details on the election results can be found in an email from Anna Torres, the chapter’s executive director on Wikimedia-l mailing list.

Compiled and edited by Samir Elsharbaty, Digital Content Intern
Wikimedia Foundation