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2012 GISCO Track, Volunteer Geographic Information at the USGS - The National Map Corps, Greg Matthews
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2012 GISCO Track, Volunteer Geographic Information at the USGS - The National Map Corps, Greg Matthews


The National Map Corps is a USGS project to collect and manage Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI). Because of the changing technical landscape, the increasing use of social media for citizen …

The National Map Corps is a USGS project to collect and manage Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI). Because of the changing technical landscape, the increasing use of social media for citizen mapping, and mandates for more transparency and citizen involvement in government, the USGS is investigating the redefinition of its volunteer program. Since 1994, the USGS has involved citizens in processes to improve topographic maps. In 2010, The Open Street Map Collaborative Project was started to evaluate the suitability of using an existing web-based collection system for data contributions and improvements by partnering with a state agency to update roads data using common specifications and editing guidelines. The first phase of the project demonstrated a successful deployment of the OpenStreetMap (OSM) Potlatch editor, customized with USGS specifications, to allow multiple editors to successfully edit roads data for part of Kansas.
In 2011, Phase Two of the OSMCP focused on student volunteer collection of 30 structure types defined as part of The National Map. Because Phase Two of the project involved a wider, less formal group of volunteers, attention was paid to elements of the editing interface to ensure that it more closely complied with USGS data collection specifications for structures. Change detection was implemented throughout this phase and quality metrics were created.
The current phase of this project, Phase Three, follows the concepts laid out in Phase Two for collecting structures. Phase Three has expanded the focus of the project across the entire state of Colorado.

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  • 1. The National Map CorpsBackground/Summary/Proposal2010-2013Presenters: Greg MatthewsWith credit to the VGI Project Team: Greg Matthews, Eric Wolf,Barbara Poore, Erin Korris, Jennifer WalterU.S. Department of the InteriorU.S. Geological Survey
  • 2. Outline  Background/FY10-FY11  USGS VGI Workshop in 2010  OSMCP Phase 1  OSMCP Phase 2  Status for FY12  FY13 Proposal
  • 3. History of VGI at the USGS
  • 4. Phase 1 Software State partner Roads Guidelines
  • 5. Phase 1: Results  Open File Report at  Successful deployment of OSM editing environment (Potlach) customized with USGS specifications  Multiple editors working to provide updates in a distributed environment  Successfully edited roads data for KS  Lessons learned implemented in Phase 2
  • 6. Phase 2 Structures Volunteers Quality/Cost The National Map OpenStreetMap
  • 7. Phase 2: Software OSM infrastructure Potlatch 2 interface modified User centered design principles
  • 8. Phase 2: Outreach and Communication
  • 9. Positional Accuracy ImprovementSummary Meets National Map Mean Absolute Error Accuracy Standards (error <12.129m) GNIS (GAZ) 42.79m 49.57% Volunteer Edit & Collect (Edit) 20.10m 84.22% Volunteer Peer Review (QC1) 13.67m 92.23%
  • 10. Phase 3
  • 11. Link to site
  • 12. SUMMARY OF CHANGES IN COLORADO March 29, 2012 through August 30, 2012 NUMBER OF STRUCTURE POINTS WITH FEATURES IN ATTRIBUTE AND/OR GEOMETRY CHANGES [3] FEATURES IN NUMBER OF TOTAL PROJECT INITIAL FINAL VERIFIED VOLUNTEER STAGE TOTAL NUMBER DATABASE[1] DATABASE[2] STRUCTURES[8] CONTRIBUTIONS[9] MODIFIED[4] DELETED[5] ADDED[6] [7] OF CHANGES TOTAL VOLUNTEER 4,481 804 44 326 1,174 2,940 135 1,309 EDITCONTRIBUTIONS[10] VOLUNTEER ADOPT-A-QUAD -- 115 0 7 122 -- 10 132 CONTRIBUTIONS TOTAL VOLUNTEER 4,481 919 44 333 1,296 2,940 145 1,441 CONTRIBUTIONS[1] INITIAL = Total number of structures in "Original" database, BEFORE editing.[2] FINAL = Total number of structures in "Revised" database, AFTER editing.[3] CHANGED = Changes to attributes, position, or both. (Note, if changes were made to both the position AND attributes of a structure, then it is only counted once in thetable).[4] MODIFIED = Total number of structures in the "Original" database that were changed during editing (meaning the number of structure points that were moved, the numberof structures with changes to attribute values (edits, additions), or the number of structure points with changes to both the position and attributes of a structure feature).[5] DELETED = Total number of structures in the "Original" database that were deleted during editing (structures that were not valid).[6] ADDED = Total number of new structures identified and added to the database during editing (the number of "errors of omission" that were corrected during editing).[7] TOTAL NUMBER CHANGES = The total number of changes made to the initial dataset by volunteers.[8] VERIFIED POINTS = The total number of initial GAZ points verified by volunteers as correct and not requiring changes to position and/or attributes.[9] TOTAL VOLUNTEER CONTRIBUTIONS = TOTAL NUMBER OF CHANGES + NUMBER OF VERIFIED STRUCTURES.[10] All volunteer contributions to date: 20 structure features edited from 3/29/12 to 7/19/12 AND 7 and/or 9 structure features edited from 7/20/12 to present.
  • 13. 1600 MODIFIED 1500 DELETED 1441 1400 ADDED 1300 VERIFIED POINTS AAQ 1229 1200 1198 TOTAL VOLUNTEER 1100 CONTRIBUTIONS 1061 1000 1011Number of Points 936 900 860 800 791 804 760 773 740 700 600 583 573 538 500 477 400 418 370 349 326 300 301 304 261 261 264 273 237 245 200 199 198 174 165 182 192 158 160 140 135 119 135 100 71 132 40 52 36 29 37 44 0 16 1 7 2 11 16 16 16 16 17 17 17 17 0 4/23/2012 5/13/2012 6/2/2012 6/22/2012 7/12/2012 8/1/2012 8/21/2012 9/10/2012 Date