Launching a new collection of Mapeo support materials!

We are very excited to announce that this month we launched a new site, which provides an introduction to the Mapeo tools and a collection of training & technical resources to support Mapeo users! 🌱 Check it out here.

It is organized as a comprehensive library with guides, visuals, and tips to accompany you through the use of both Mapeo Mobile and Desktop. We tried hard to make these resources very accessible so that even people who are not familiar with technology can follow along. We use many visuals in the step-by-step instructions and there are often links to additional video materials.

Currently, the site is only available in English but we plan to have it translated to other languages (Spanish and Portuguese to start) in a couple of months. We will also continue to expand and improve the content of the site as we move forward.

We know that people using these resources will have diverse interests, goals, needs, and technical literacy. For this reason, there are a variety of paths to access information and levels of detail users may be looking for. For the moment, this is what you can find on the site:

  • 👀 An overview of Mapeo, explaining what it does, how the collected data is stored and shared using a peer-to-peer database, and a glimpse of how Mapeo is being used in different community projects. We also outline some of the strengths and limitations of Mapeo to help potential users decide if it is the right tool for their project. You can also check out the FAQs page for additional info.
  • 🏃🏾‍♀️💨Quick start guides on Mapeo Mobile and Mapeo Desktop, which are short, easy to understand, and cover the basics. These guides are great for a quick, hands-on introduction to the key features of both apps.
  • A complete reference guide, which covers a comprehensive set of technical and non-technical considerations when beginning a Mapeo project. We will continue to expand this section in the near future, but so far it covers the following topics:
    • 📝 Essential considerations when planning a Mapeo project, which can be very helpful in the initial steps of thinking through a project’s goals, participants, data flow, etc.
    • ⚙️ A review of the customization options that Mapeo offers and support materials for customizing the tool yourself – from changing the language to adding custom background maps or forms! (Parts of this section will require some technical skills to easily follow.)
    • 📚 Step-by-step guides on how to install, prepare and use both Mapeo Mobile and Mapeo Desktop, including support for both the most simple and more complex processes, explained in a plain, visual, and easy-to-follow way.  
      • 📱 Mapeo Mobile installation and setup, where you can find all the needed information to get Mapeo ready on your smartphone and include your project’s customizations.
      • 📱 Mapeo Mobile use, which covers all the necessary steps when using the app: activating GPS on your phone, collecting and editing data, sharing data with others via messaging apps or social media, or syncing your database with other Mapeo devices.
      • 💻 Mapeo Desktop installation and setup, for support on how to get the app ready on your computer and include your project’s customizations.
      • 💻 Mapeo Desktop Observations mode section, with guidance on how to synchronize with other devices and get data collected from Mapeo Mobile onto your computer, as well as step-by-step instructions on how to view, edit and filter the data, and export it as PDF reports, GeoJSON and CSV files, and Web maps.
      • 💻 Mapeo Desktop Territory mode section, which offers a comprehensive guide on how to create and edit territory data, as well as importing external geospatial data to your project. It also walks through how to sync territory data with other Mapeo Desktop users and how to change the background maps used in Territory mode.
    • 🔧 Troubleshooting section, where you can find support on how to solve many common technical issues with Mapeo, as well as more detailed instructions on how to do some less-straightforward Mapeo-related processes with computers and smartphones.
    • 🅰 Glossary of Mapeo terms, where you can get clarity on the words we use and view some quick reference sheets to get oriented when looking at Mapeo for the first time.
  • 👩🏽‍💻Resources for developers, with information on Mapeo architecture and repositories.

All pages in this guide can also be saved in PDF format and printed for use offline. Read more about that here.

We hope that this new Mapeo support materials site will be helpful to new and existing users of Mapeo and promote increased autonomy and accessibility. We look forward to growing and improving this compilation of resources and will keep the community updated as we add new sections! If you have feedback or suggestions on how to improve the site, please don’t hesitate to contact us via our public Discord chat server or the Earth Defenders Toolkit forum.