Mobile data collection

Joachim Mangilima - December 16, 2014 in Skillhare, Tech

This blog post is based on the School of Data skillshare I hosted on mobile data collection. Thanks to everyone who took part in it!


Of recent, mobile has become an increasingly popular method of data collection. This is achieved through having an application or electronic form on a mobile device such as a smartphone or a tablet. These devices offer innovative ways to gather data regardless of time and location of the respondent.

The benefits of mobile data collection are obvious, such as quicker response times and the possibility to reach previously hard-to-reach target groups. In this blog post I share some of the tools that I have been using and developing applications on top of for the past five years.

  1.       Open Data Kit

Open Data Kit (ODK) is a free and open-source set of tools which help researchers author, field, and manage mobile data collection solutions. ODK provides an out-of-the-box solution for users to:

  • Build a data collection form or survey ;
  • Collect the data on a mobile device and send it to a server; and
  • Aggregate the collected data on a server and extract it in useful formats.

ODK allows data collection using mobile devices and data submission to an online server, even without an Internet connection or mobile carrier service at the time of data collection.

 

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ODK, which uses the Android platform, supports a wide variety of questions in the electronic forms such as text, number, location, audio, video, image and barcodes.

  1.      Commcare

Commcare is an open-source mobile platform designed for data collection, client management, decision support, and behavior change communication. Commcare consists of two main technology components: Commcare Mobile and CommCareHQ.

The mobile application is used by client-facing community health workers/enumerator in visits as a data collection and educational tool and includes optional audio, image, and audio, GPS locations and video prompts. Users access the application-building platform through the website CommCareHQ  which is operated on a cloud-based server.

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Commcare supports J2ME feature phones, Android phones, and Android tablets and can capture photos and GPS readings, Commcare supports multi-languages and non-roman character scripts as well as the integration of multimedia (image, audio, and video).

CommCare mobile versions allow applications to run offline and collected data can be transmitted to CommCareHQ when wireless (GPRS) or Internet (WI-FI) connectivity becomes available.

  1.      GEOODK

GeoODK provides a way to collect and store geo-referenced information, along with a suite of tools to visualize, analyze and manipulate ground data for specific needs. It enables an understanding of the data for decision-making, research, business, disaster management, agriculture and more.

It is based on the Open Data Kit (ODK), but has been extended with offline/online mapping functionalities, the ability to have custom map layer, as well as new spatial widgets, for collecting point, polygon and GPS tracing functionality.

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This one blog post cannot cover each and every tool for mobile data collection, but some other tools that can be used to accomplish  mobile data collection each of which having their own unique features includes OpenXData and Episurveyor.

Why Use Mobile Technology in Collecting Data

There are several advantages as to why mobile technology should be used in collecting data some of which include,

  •         harder skipping questions,
  •         immediate (real time) access to the data from the server, which also makes data aggregation and analysis to become very rapid,
  •         Minimizes workforce and hence reduces cost of data collection by cutting out data entry personnel.
  •         Data Security is enhanced through data encryption
  •         Collect unlimited data types such as audio, video, barcodes, GPS locations
  •         Increase productivity by skipping data entry middle man

·         Save cost related to printing, storage and management of documents associated with paper based data collection.

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Web scraping in under 60 seconds: the magic of import.io

escueladedatos - December 9, 2014 in HowTo, Scraping, Tech

This post was written by Rubén Moya, School of Data fellow in Mexico, and originally posted on Escuela de Datos.


Import.io is a very powerful and easy-to-use tool for data extraction that has the aim of getting data from any website in a structured way. It is meant for non-programmers that need data (and for programmers who don’t want to overcomplicate their lives).

I almost forgot!! Apart from everything, it is also a free tool (o_O)

The purpose of this post is to teach you how to scrape a website and make a dataset and/or API in under 60 seconds. Are you ready?

It’s very simple. You just have to go to http://magic.import.io; post the URL of the site you want to scrape, and push the “GET DATA” button. Yes! It is that simple! No plugins, downloads, previous knowledge or registration are necessary. You can do this from any browser; it even works on tablets and smartphones.

For example: if we want to have a table with the information on all items related to Chewbacca on MercadoLibre (a Latin American version of eBay), we just need to go to that site and make a search – then copy and paste the link (http://listado.mercadolibre.com.mx/chewbacca) on Import.io, and push the “GET DATA” button.

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You’ll notice that now you have all the information on a table, and all you need to do is remove the columns you don’t need. To do this, just place the mouse pointer on top of the column you want to delete, and an “X” will appear.

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You can also rename the titles to make it easier to read; just click once on the column title.

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Finally, it’s enough for you to click on “download” to get it in a csv file.

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Now: you’ll notice two options – “Download the current page” and “Download # pages”. This last option exists in case you need to scrape data that is spread among different results pages of the same site.

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In our example, we have 373 pages with 48 articles each. So this option will be very useful for us.

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Screen Shot 2014-12-08 at 20.35.18 Good news for those of us who are a bit more technically-oriented! There is a button that says “GET API” and this one is good to, well, generate an API that will update the data on each request. For this you need to create an account (which is also free of cost).

 

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As you saw, we can scrape any website in under 60 seconds, even if it includes tons of results pages. This truly is magic, no? For more complex things that require logins, entering subwebs, automatized searches, et cetera, there is downloadable import.io software… But I’ll explain that in a different post.

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Code For Bandung – What, Why, and How to Work with Open Data

yuandra - December 8, 2014 in Community, Events

Last Friday the Code for Bandung, a local movement of techies and developers who are trying to create civic apps for the City of Bandung, Indonesia. The group took its inspiration from the Code for America and conducted its first community meetup in a coworking space in Bandung called Co n Co. I was there together with a local community data champion Prasetyo Andy Wicaksono to share about the usage of open data both in social and business sense.

The purpose of this event is twofold. The first is to introduce the Code for Bandung movement to the people of Bandung and the second is to give an insight how the people of Bandung can use data especially open data for civic technology. The second purpose is very important because right now awareness regarding the usage of data for civic tech is still low, even in the technology community. There are currently many effort in the field of data based decision for business but for things like civic tech based on data is still pretty much undeveloped.

In the event, we talked about things such as: what is data and open data; why those are important; examples of civic tech apps using data that is publicly available; etc. One example of such project was the water height in the city water canal which gives early warning information for flood alert. Besides civic tech usage, we also discussed about making a start-up with publicly available data, and continued with listing and searching what kind of data actually can be provided by the government of Bandung and can be used to create a useful solution.

The event covered some interesting topics. It is a nice and refreshing perspective to see how data can used for social and civic goals from the perspective of the technology people. It brings to mind that sometimes the most creative uses of data can be achieved by combining the perspective of many different people from different backgrounds, such as from the government, technology, and advocacy.

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Instigating the Rise of Demand for Data: The #OpenData Party in Abuja

olubabayemi - December 8, 2014 in Events

So what happens when you have 102 Nigerians representing all the six regions of the country in   Abuja to teach and learn about what they can use data or open data for? “It was an action – packed, idea generating, brain storming, mind grooming which will help me in my advocacy as well as in tracking how the budget of my country is being spent, a challenging and yet fun – filled event” as described by Clinton Ezeigwe of People to People International; “As someone working in a non-government organization, this event has boost my knowledge on data sourcing, data collection, data analysis, and will help me in mapping my work environment” informed Aniekan Archibong of Partners for Peace in Akwa Ibom state.

What participants said about the 2 - day event

What participants said about the 2 – day event

In a 2 – day event on Friday, November 28 and Saturday 29, 2014 at the African University of Science and Technology, that was meant to raise the awareness on how NGOs can use available data to monitor service delivery in the health sector; empower journalist on using data for creating compelling stories that can cause change; and in all create a platform (on-the training) that can be used to monitor service delivery in the health sector. “We will be most interested in how citizens turned professionals like you all here, can take up stories from the data that will be curated during this event, in asking government questions about inputs in the health sector, and other sectors as well” said Christine K, Country Director of Heinrich Boell Stiftung Nigeria, during her keynote at the event.

In the minds of many participants was how we fit into this new world of Open Data with a party at the end. Did you ever wonder why the party? Well to clear the air, we started the “party” helping participants to know what data will mean to us, they as participants, and what it can change in the life of that curious woman that walks 30km from Keta to Goronyo to join an antenatal care program; what it meant for that hardworking man to transit from Potiskum to Kaduna before he can get a Hepatitis C viral load test, even though he had to borrow the 23, 000 Naira meant for this test. Yes, available and structured data can create a great story out of this recurring event.” If you are still looking for what could then happen from the gathering of these 102 participants – it’s all written in gold here, even though these are still stories in the making, but we can do much more” exclaimed Anas Sani Anka of the Nigeria Television Authority in Gusau, Zamfara

Adam Talsma of Reboot sharing skills that can make data matter to people on ground

Adam Talsma of Reboot sharing skills that can make data matter to people on ground

Going through the data pipeline (data sourcing, collection, collation, analysis, reporting and use) surprisingly, we got this shock again! Only 2% of the participants knew where to quickly find the available data of the federal government budget in Nigeria. Whilst data pipelines was meant to guide participants through the data management processes (in a participatory manner) it was another opportunity to share where the available data are online in the country, and how they can be used in advocacy and storytelling to start conversation around transparency and accountability; and also in exchanging feedbacks between the people and government.

Leading the skill share session was Adam Talsma of Reboot taking participants through using formhub and textit and Michael Egbe of eHealth Africa introducing participants to how they are mapping Nigeria using Open Street Maps. The storytelling sessions had Tina Armstrong, an award winning data journalist that is interested in telling stories of vulnerable communities using data; Joshua Olufemi shared skills and tools that has made Premium Times the best online investigative media in the country; while the session was rounded up by Ledum of Right to Know, showing participants how to enact the Freedom of Information Act in getting data from the government.

Joshua Olufemi of Premium Times Nigeria sharing skills on telling stories with data

Joshua Olufemi of Premium Times Nigeria sharing skills on telling stories with data

The high point of the first day was the, I want to learn, and I want to teach session – a remix of the School of Data Summer Camp World Cafe and Skill Share Session. “Learning particular skills in 10 minutes can be mind blowing and something I will not want to forget in a long time, I only hope we could have had more time other than the 30 minutes for the 10 min/skill session” narrated Michael Saanu of Africa Hope Foundation. Amongst skills that were taught is using Microsoft Excel for analysis, creating Survey form using Google Form, collaboration techniques with the Google Drive, writing funding proposals, community building, using Twitter and Facebook for advocacy, data scraping using Tabula amongst others. After this session, it was clear that participants wanted to be part of all the sessions, but they were only limited to three, as the night crept in faster than we expected – what an energetic way to end the first day!

Participants using sticky notes to chose what to learn and what to teach

Participants using sticky notes to chose what to learn and what to teach

Kick starting day 2, with the sun and expectations so high was lessons from participants, and an ice breaker on the power of around leadership. This day was dedicated to Open Street Maps Goronyo Mapping Party and Data Sprint on Funds meant for inputs in the health sector. Moving from scraping the data from the budget office to visualizing it, and creating a monitoring instrument amongst the participants. Working through the available health facility data for Goronyo, we found out that most data were not reliable – How can we have latitude of 322 on a latitude column on data from the just released NMIS data? So if we can’t use that, how do we get the government health facility data – most participants of this group concluded that the dhis2 data could be more reliable but its usage still remains difficult! Anyone wants to help in getting Goronyo health facility geo-referenced data? Please comment here. Not giving up, Sidney Bamidele of eHealth Africa trained participants on how to add, and edit points on open street maps and how to create task managers on HOTOSM.

Sidney Bamidele of eHealth Africa training participants on using Open Street Maps

Sidney Bamidele of eHealth Africa training participants on using Open Street Maps

Nevertheless, the data sprint with music, and drinks took the whole day, and I couldn’t stop hearing – OMG! So 20 million was budgeted for the construction of this health facility in my LGA, how come it is still at this state, I think we need to go and ask”; “I have found that so many time, descriptions of budget data has been duplicated – and how do we stop this”. As it has always been, only one sprinter had an apple laptop out of the 50 laptops on the tables; Most of the participants agreed that only 30% of Nigerians own a smart phone, so how many will used it, and how many will use an android or that new android app you are about to make? Maybe the feature of mobile activism in the country still lies in feature phones. These and many are conversations that always ensue during training and data sprint sessions I have facilitated. At the end what did we make – an Ushahidi Crowdmap instance of where funds for health input will go? a first step in starting a conversation around monitoring service delivery in that sector.

Participants during the Mapping and Data Sprint

Participants during the Mapping and Data Sprint

What next? in the words of the Hamzat Lawal, the Chief Executive of Connected Development [CODE], it is important that we brace up, and start using the data on this platform in asking questions directed not only to the government on if budget data description got to citizens it was meant for, but also to citizens it was meant for – on facility and health input usage and quality. As a School of Data Fellow, I have learnt that citizens need basic tools and skills to hold government accountable. As a monitoring and evaluation expert, I can see that in few years, lots of data will be released (even though most wouldn’t be responsible), but how citizens will identify and use the reliable ones remain a herculean task. As a human being, I learned how hardworking and brave my colleagues and participants are. At no time did I feel that facilitating data trainings was futile. Ultimately, what I really learned about data, or open data, or available data is that the NGOs, journalist, activist and governments still need more capacity building around this phenomenon.

Pictures from This event are on Flickr

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Data 101 Knowledge Sharing with Publish What You Pay Indonesia

yuandra - December 5, 2014 in Data for CSOs, Events

Starting in August the School of Data Fellow for Indonesia, Yuandra Ismiraldi working together with Publish What You Pay Indonesia organized a weekly / bi-weekly event of knowledge sharing regarding data skills. This knowledge sharing event is free and open for all, so people can just come and learn various skills about working with data.

 

Data PipelineThe skills shared are mainly the detailed and technical version of the data pipeline concept of the School of Data:

  • Finding & getting data: Google advanced search, use of data portals, using Tabula to get data from PDFs
  • Cleaning data: data cleaning principles, using Open Refine to clean up messy data
  • Analyzing data: Excel, Tableau
  • Visualizing data: visualization principles, Infogr.am, Piktochart, etc
  • And a lot of other data related stuff: spatial data, examples of advocacy using data

 

The event is more focused on discussions around each topic. The School of Data Fellow first gives a short presentation about the topic and continues with technical hands sessions or with a discussion based on a case study, depending on the topic. With these kinds of knowledge sharing, hopefully that CSOs such as PWYP Indonesia will have a more hands on experience on working with data.

PWYP Indonesia Extractive Industries Infographic

Right now the knowledge sharing has been done about 10 times, with some encouraging results. PWYP Indonesia began to use data more thoroughly as the underlying base for some of their advocacy program and have created some infographics in order to better communicate their data better. Hopefully, knowledge sharing like this can continue and better support CSOs in using data for their advocacy uses.

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Constructive Engagement: The first citizen-initiated data skills training for government (Philippines)

Happy Feraren - December 4, 2014 in Events

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Open Spoken: Happy talks about openness and its impact in governance.

Last Tuesday (November 25), I led my first data training workshop in Manila with Sam Leon. After months of preparation, over Skype calls and shared Google documents, the workshop finally took place in a shared office space, with 20 participants from government. The participants came from the office of the Civil Service Commission (CSC) – a special constitutional body in the country created to promote morale, efficiency, integrity, responsiveness, progressiveness, and courtesy in the Civil Service. The office is also in charge of the implementation of the Anti Red Tape Act* (ARTA). The participants we handled during the session were directly involved in the monitoring of this law through a national feedback and help desk system called the Contact Center ng Bayan (CCB); and, an internal team that is in charge of surveying various local government offices and its clients (from social security, to health, to tax offices, etc.) called the Report Card Survey (RCS). The team was young, vibrant, and ready to learn – and the day was just about to start. This is hardly the image of a “public servant” in the Philippines. It was a stark difference from the typical grandstanding politician that Filipinos see in mainstream media.

Open Data and the Anti Red Tape Act

The first part of the program was an introduction to Open Data through the lens of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) of which the Philippines is a founding member country. Despite being one of the first 8 signatories in 2011, it’s still not common knowledge in government offices. The OGP is still a fairly new concept, and the significance of it hasn’t been fully recognized. The implementation of the ARTA  is included as one of the commitments of the OGP Philippine Government Action Plan.

After the discussion of open data and open governance, we then moved on to the hard skills sessions of data cleaning and data visualization. Despite the technical heavy content that we were discussing, participants were very engaged asking questions and sharing stories about data protection and open data formats. They understood the seriousness of confidentiality especially in a political climate like the Philippines where reporting something may cause you harm. Government offices, for example, can give an individual a more difficult time obtaining something like a business permit if he/she files a case against a government officer in the local city hall. Given that, I think the publishing of this dataset bears so much more weight considering how some of these complaints fall on deaf ears, or worse, a failed justice system. Through the information that can be gathered from this dataset, citizens can find out for themselves which local government offices are most responsive and which ones are apathetic. By making this kind of information public, pressure from the citizenry can be applied to specific offices to change their inefficient and poor public service delivery.

Clean Data: Sam talks about Open Refine and its many uses when handling "dirty data"

Clean Data: Sam talks about Open Refine and its many uses when handling “dirty data”

Working Break: Participants opted to work through the break to continue their data visualization activity headed by Sam.

Working Break: Participants opted to work through the break to continue their data cleaning activity headed by Sam.

The same people that answer the calls of the national hotline are the same ones that process, analyze, and publish stories about their reports from the frontline. Data skills such as data cleaning and visualization can save a lot of processing time and can quickly turn into useful information for the citizens. “It’s good that we now have this common knowledge base between us. All members of the team now understand the impact of something like properly inputting data on our shared database,” said one of the participants.

To illustrate how much data they process yearly – In 2014 the RCS team surveyed 1,023 government offices and interviewed 30,690 citizens. Moreover, the CCB team processed 5,162 ticketed transactions* via SMS, calls, and online channels from 2012-2013. One of the participants approached me after and said, “If I had known about Open Refine before, this would have saved me so much time in generating reports.”

Open is an attitude. Data is a discipline.

Open Data in the Philippines exists in its own way. I found that though the datasets of the Civil Service Commission are not technically open, openness exists in the attitudes of the people who work inside the bureaucracy. The programs they have (RCS and CCB) are already done in the discipline of data-driven governance and perhaps all it takes is channelling all of that towards the global movement of Open Governance.

It will take time to digitize all our datasets and publish them in open formats, meanwhile, we can start with attitudes and making newer processes and programs that don’t rely on older data more transparent. The CCB, for example, was launched in 2012 and started with digital data collection processes. Instead of focusing on the backlog, we can choose to look forward and integrate open data in programs that are new or still to be launched.

Shared Space: The group was divided into teams to work on different data visualizations given a common dataset.

Shared Space: The group was divided into teams to work on different data visualizations given a common dataset.

Picture-taking unites us all: If there's one thing we Filipinos love to do, it's this. All smiles for open data!

Picture-taking unites us all: If there’s one thing we Filipinos love to do, it’s this. All smiles for open data!

*The ARTA is a law that was passed in 2007 to improve the efficiency in frontline government services to the public by reducing bureaucratic red tape, preventing graft and corruption, and providing penalties therefore. * Ticketed transactions consist of: complaints, queries, feedback, and commendations

Full Disclosure: Happy is also the co-founder of Bantay.ph – a Manila based civil society organization (CSO) that focuses its work on youth and ARTA implementation. They have been a CSO partner of the CSC since 2013 which is the basis for the selection of their office to go through the data skills workshop with the Open Knowledge Foundation.

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PizzaData : Let’s talk data over pizza !

yuandra - December 4, 2014 in Community, Events

Data-related communities in Indonesia are still very rare and can be counted on the fingers of one hand, but in November a new data community in Indonesia was born, and that is the Pizza Data. Based in the city of Bandung, Indonesia, the Pizza Data community took up its inspiration from the Ngopi Data community in Jakarta that is initiated by OFKN Ambassador Indonesia, Ramda Yanurzha and taken to Bandung with the help of School of Data Fellow Indonesia, Yuandra Ismiraldi and a local community data champion Prasetyo Andy Wicaksono

Pizza Data Indonesia Bandung First Event

The concept of the Pizza Data community is simple : Talking about data while enjoying a slice of pizza. The first meetup was held in a co-working space in Bandung Co n Co and supported by many communities in Bandung such as Hackerspace Bandung and FOWAB . It was a fun meetup ! Eventbrite tickets were sold out, the room was fully booked and there were many people from a diverse background such as academia, business, government and social movements like Code For Bandung .

It is interesting when people from mixed backgrounds like that gather around in a room and then talk about their experiences working with data. We heard stories about the how the government collects and uses data in Indonesia, stories about how businesses uses their data and how they play with data to take business decisions based on it, and of course about the usage of data in civic tech apps. Everyone was eager to learn and share their skills, making this a very good mix of people.

Overall, it is a great first meetup that serves as a good way for the Pizza Data community going forward. Hopefully the community will grow and spread to other Indonesian cities so the knowledge and awareness about data will spread to as many people as possible in Indonesia.

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Open Data Club – Talking about data with CSOs in Indonesia

yuandra - December 3, 2014 in Community, Data for CSOs, Events

Back in September, the School of Data conducted a training for CSOs working with election data in cooperation with Perludem and supported by The Asia Foundation. The training was the kick off of an initiative aiming to create a community of Indonesian CSOs that are interested in working with data to strengthen their advocacy strategy. This is how the Open Data Club was born in the end of October.

Meetup of Open Data Club of CSOs in Jakarta

Meetup of Open Data Club of CSOs in Jakarta

The Open Data Club membership was open for all CSO interested in working with data. Right now the meetings are concentrated in Jakarta but as the community gaining more momentum it will try to do the meetup in other cities as well. Need to be noted that this is might the first data-related community of CSOs, so this is a great start for data awareness for CSO in Indonesia. Right now there are more than 10 organizations took part in the meetups, including some goverments and funders.

The first meetup, initiated by Perludem, had quite a mixed group, ranging from CSOs, goverment, and other data focused movements. However the focus is still on how to use data for advocacy, a theme that CSOs are very interested in. There was a lot of talking about how CSOs can get data, manage and analyse it and finally use it to for storytelling and evidence based campaigning in the form of infographics or interactive apps. One important point that also has been raised is how CSOs can collaborate and potentially combine their data and push more for knowledge sharing and collective advocacy.

The Open Data Club became a weekly meetup in which the participating CSOs take turns in hosting the event. This means that they all visit the offices of all participants CSOs and get to know each other a little better. One more interesting thing is that the CSOs are starting to bond and create action plans (called bubbles) of things they want to achieve through the meetups. By doing this, hopefully after several meetups there will something concrete that the Open Data Club can create and build together.

The Open Data Club marks something quite important for CSO in Indonesia. It shows that interest and awareness on working with data is gaining ground in Indonesia and the CSOs are starting to collaborate and work together for the greater good. Let’s hope this great community can create great things in the future!

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News from our School of Data Fellows

Milena Marin - December 2, 2014 in Events, Fellowship

We are back with some news about our amazing fellows from all over the world. One of our ways to keep in touch is having weekly written stand-ups in chat. We ask our fellows 3 questions plus a bonus:

  1. What you have done
  2. What you are doing
  3. Any lessons/obstacles
  4. Bonus music tracks.

A busy month full of data trainings

  • In Philippines, Happy and Sam ran a Data Skills Training for the Civil Service Commission. They really enjoyed working with government employees who were so switched on. Keep an eye on this space for a follow up blog.

  • In Nigeria, our Olu just rounded up the #OpenDataParty in Abuja, Nigeria November 28 and 29 where they had 116 registered participants coming from the six region of the country to teach, and learn about how to use data for advocacy (NGOs) and storytelling (journalists); For those of you who can’t wait for the blog post, here are some pictures: Looking for pictures from this event.

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  • In Peru, our fellow Antonio and Juan Manuel, master of all School of Data things in Latin America, hosted Meetup with HacksHackers about private data and open data. Antonio is also working on a visualisation of climate emergencies in Peru over tge last 10 years.

  • In South Africa, Hannah is working on mapping the Cape Town budget for a beneficiary NGO, Ndifuna Ukwazi. For this she is experimenting with Carto DB, using a lot of their customisation functionalities.

  • In Romania, Codrina worked on and listed an application for the OGP Romanian awards - Political Colours of Romania, and preparing an open geodata workshop in this project.

  • In India, Nisha just finished a beginners workshop on data journalism and an open streets map mapping party with Mapbox. She is working on an online data journalism module and preparing a data expedition in Hyderabad with Milena.

  • In Tanzania, our Joachim lead a Open Refine deep dive last week with President’s office , Public Service Management and is now organizing another Open Refine and QGIS deep dive session for next week with an educational agency in Dar es Salaam.

  • In Macedonia, Dona and Milena organised a 2-day training in Macedonia covering basic data concepts, data analysis with spreadsheets and data visualisation. Here are some photos:

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  • In Hungary, Rita is in full preparation for next week’s two spreadsheet workshops for CSOs. This is the second series of spreadsheets training. Last time, the biggest challenge was assessing people’s skills to be able to tailor the training to their knowledge. This time, to be more accurate, the team has decided to require a few exercises to be completed, not just a self assessment survey.

  • In Indonesia, Yuandra talked about the usage of data at an event in Bandung and helped PWYP Indonesia create their first infographic. He is currently preparing for skill sharing session this November and for a survey trip with PWYP to kalimantan.

Some lessons learnt

  • Never rely on internet at events! If possible bring a separate internet source to workshops like a internet dongle or a BRCK
  • When organizing events be patients , especially when dealing with public servants!
  • It’s never an easy task to find good datasets for trainings. We try to always use data that is relevant for our participants, that can get them to ask some interesting questions and is of course appropriate for the training.
  • It’s also quite hard to assess the skills of your participants before the training. Over-rating their skills might get you disappointed or at least you’ll have to cut and do a lot of adjustment to your training.

Bonus music from around the world

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User Experience Design – Skillshare

Lucy Chambers - November 28, 2014 in HowTo, User Experience

“User Experience Design is the process of enhancing user satisfaction and loyalty by improving usability, ease of use and pleasure provided in the the interaction between the user and the product.”

This week Siyabonga Africa, one of our fellows in South Africa, led an amazing introduction to how to think about your users when designing a project to make sure they get the most out of it. In case you missed it – you can watch the entire skillshare online and get Siya’s slides.

Video:

Slides:

Where can I learn more?

For more in the skillshare series – keep your eye on the Open Knowledge Google Plus page and follow @SchoolofData.

For more from Siyabonga – poke @siyafrica on Twitter.

Image Credits: Glen Scarborough (CC-BY-SA) .

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