[plug] Fwd: OpenRosa/OpenDataKit expertise, anyone?

Alexander Hartner alex at j2anywhere.com
Fri Sep 2 16:37:13 WST 2011

Hi Sam

I guess you had a look at : http://code.google.com/p/opendatakit/wiki/ODKAggregate

On the FAQ section they mention Aggregate on MySQL but the link doesn't seem to go anywhere useful.

What other servers can I use?
There is ongoing work to support Aggregate on MySQL, OpenMRS, OpenXData, GATHER, Sahana, EpiSurveyor, and Drupal as backends. ODK Aggregate currently supports passing data to Google Spreadsheets, Google Fusion Tables and Rhiza Insight.


On 02/09/2011, at 16:23 , Sam Wilson wrote:

> Thanks Alex!
> Looks like an interesting project, thanks for sharing.  And very applicable to
> tracking wooden power poles in WA! :-)
> It is indeed the OpenDataKit systems that I've been looking at.  The
> ODKCollect runs on Android and seems to do pretty much what we want. 
> Unfortunately, there's a few missing pieces, like: what to do with the xforms
> once they're back on the server; how to prefill data in the forms that are
> downloaded; etc.
> It just seems likely that this sort of data collection stuff has been done
> before, and (hopefully) with free software.  I like the Openrosa approach
> because I'd like to be able to contribute something back to that community
> (probably only documentation, that sort of thing), but really I've not got the
> time to do as much as I'd like... hence, seeking someone else with the skills.
> :-)  (Anyone looking for a job?)
> Anyway, Friday arvo now!  Time for a beer and some *more fun* coding.... :-)
> Thanks,
> Sam.
> On Fri, September 2, 2011 10:38 am, Alexander Hartner wrote:
>> Hi Sam,
>> In a previous live I worked for Helveta (http://helveta.com). There we
>> designed and developed software for handhelds (in that case Windows Mobile
>> based) devices and backend software to process the collected data. In one
>> application we collected GPS location for exotic timber to track individual
>> trees from stump to the final product. Trees were bar coded which the devices
>> fitted with scanners and GPS were able store. The operator then added some
>> additional information about the tree, such as species, circumference etc
>> manually.
>> The devices were offline in this case as often the operator had to travel off
>> the trodden path. Every so often they would sync the device with the server
>> which would then produce various reports for analysis.
>> Here is  a picture showing the bar-code and the device.
>> So much to my experience. Now to your issue. I had a look at the openrosa
>> website, but didn't find a download / screen shots. So I am not sure they have
>> a product or are still working on something.
>> After a bit of googling I found :
>> http://code.google.com/p/opendatakit/wiki/ODKCollect which seems to be doing
>> what you want.
>> There is a list of various implementations available on Wikipedia though:
>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XForms
>> Technically XForms seems like the way to go. It does most if not all the
>> things we had to implement ourselves back then.
>> I had a look at the android app store and only found one match for xforms. Do
>> you already have a client app for this in mind ?
>> Your challenge I guess is to find the most mature implementation.
>> Hope this helps
>> Alex
>> Begin forwarded message:
>>> From: "Sam Wilson" <sam at archives.org.au>
>>> Subject: [plug] OpenRosa/OpenDataKit expertise, anyone?
>>> Date: 2 September 2011 09:59:49 AWST
>>> To: plug at plug.org.au
>>> Reply-To: plug at plug.org.au
>>> Hi,
>>> I work for a contractor for Western Power and we're investigating the use of
>>> OpenRosa tools for field data collection.
>>> http://openrosa.org/
>>> (Basically: an android client downloads xforms from a server, fills them in,
>>> and sends them back.  The specs for each part are pretty well defined.)
>>> Has anyone here had any experience with this sort of thing, and interested
>>> in
>>> consulting?  Or know anyone in Perth who might?
>>> Or, equally: what other avenues of FOSS-based field data collection I should
>>> investigate?  :-)
>>> Thanks!
>>> - Sam.
>>> _______________________________________________
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