The go-to-conference for open source geospatial community (FOSS4G 2019 Bucharest)

The annual FOSS4G held this year at Bucharest, Romania, is the go-to-conference for the latest in open source geospatial software. This is the conference where the open source geospatial tech experts meet the users and stakeholders from a wide variety of organizations representing private and public sector instances from different parts of the world. In this blog post, we’ll share some of our pre-conference-notes hoping that they’ll serve you as well!  

FOSS4G is not just a tech conference, it’s also a place where the user needs meet the tech and another way around. Gispo has been at this global annually organized conference since 2011, from the States to e.g. South-Korea and Germany, last year held the first time in Africa, at Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.  

This year’s agenda looks as great as always and we at Gispo Finland will certainly be there furthering our know-how on several software packages and libraries through the great workshops and the wide range of interesting presentations on the state of the art in the field. 

The Finnish FOSS4G at Helsinki, on May, 2019.

Wow! That’s the sensation that one gets out of going through the list of presentations in the conference website; it’s just overwhelming the amount of insight on geospatial technologies, datasets, and communities that we’ll see this August in Bucharest. 

We’ll be part of this insightful set of presentations with a couple of contributions of our own. Topi will be presenting on some software benchmarking besides tricks and tips he encountered when generating analysis on election data from millions and millions geo-datapoints. Come by and take in what Topi learned while going through this challenging spatial analysis workflow with QGIS, PostGIS, and OpenJump. You can also follow Topi’s Twitter profile to get updates straight from the conference. 

Besides, be sure to attend Sanna’s and Maiju’s presentation on how FOSS4G is enabling the geospatial analytics for urban policy-making against climate change. 

Besides, together with National Land Survey of Finland, Sanna will be giving a workshop on the usage of Oskari, a Map Application Framework based on open source, utilized widely specially among Finnish governmental agencies. From Sanna’s Twitter handle you can read the latest from the conference.

Please, if you spot somebody from our team, come and say hello; it’ll be interesting to share some views on how FOSS4G is in the very core of our doings. Get to know our team here (almost all the team will be joining the conference!). 

And now, let us share some thoughts we had while going through this enormous amount of presentations (~ 300). This year, we can identify already some trending topics from the schedule: 

  • Object detection and image segmentation with remote sensing data
  • Workflow automatization with cli-tools and server-side software
  • Utilization and integration of big geospatial datasets

Whereas for datasets and data models there’s also some points of interest that were spotted few or more times in the schedule:

  • Mapillary and their street-level imagery datasets
  • INSPIRE (Infrastructure for Spatial Information in Europe) 
  • The high and mighty OpenStreetMap
  • Commercial data providers (Here Maps, Planet)

And as is the case for institutional frameworks, we can observe an important presence from United Nations’ UN Open GIS initiative beginning from the keynote to be delivered by Kyoung-Soo Eom from the UN. And as it comes to the keynote speakers as a whole, it’s interesting to get insights from the industry leaders from such a wide variety of areas of expertise: communities, big data, institutional impact, among other thematics, that all come together in the name of open source geospatial software.

That’s it then, hope to see you at FOSS4G 2019! We’re eager to meet you and all the organizations, communities, and individuals that make this ecosystem strive.

Santtu Pyykkönen

Santtu Pyykkönen is MSA who is interested in GIS (and all it's glory), open source software and open communities and urban development. Freetime activities constist of running and reading.