Microgrants/Microgrants 2020/Proposal/OpenStreetMap Calendar

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OpenStreetMap Calendar Development
OpenStreetMap Calendar simplifies event organisation and staying up-to-date on nearby events.
budget (Euro)5000 €
location(s)Germany, Europe, Planet Earth

About your Mapping Community

Tell us a little bit about your mapping community at the moment, some examples of details to include are below, but please provide us with any information you think is relevant. Please write 100-200 words

I am Thomas Skowron (aka thomersch), based in Cologne, Germany. With this proposal I am asking for development funding for the OpenStreetMap Event Calendar (osmcal).

The event calendar in the OSM Wiki has been a painpoint that people have complained about repeatedly. Ideas for extending the Wiki appeared from time to time, but nothing materialized, thus in 2019 I decided to build something to improve the situation.

osmcal makes communicating events more easy, expands accessibility and builds bridges into other platforms. Creating an event is easy by just filling a form, and you don‘t even need a new account - your OSM login suffices. osmcal has filtering by proximity or country, it also provides RSS and iCalendar/ics feeds to stay updated as well as an API for retrieving events. In collaboration with event organizers osmcal introduced a survey functionality, which makes it possible to ask participants for information when they register for an event. And of course it's open source, licensed under Apache License.

osmcal is build with mobile users in mind: It offers an adaptive interface that works on devices of any size, has large and contrastful typography so anyone can read the texts and is lightweight, so it works well on slow connections and devices.

As platforms like meetup.com become increasingly unattractive, osmcal can provide a more open alternative for our community. With the suddenly increased need for online gatherings due to COVID-19, it also enables local communities to communicate their virtual meetups.

osmcal already has users from all over the world and I want it to become the default calendar in the OSM universe (and maybe even beyond that).

What do you need the grant money for?

We want to understand what you plan to buy, how much you plan to buy, and why this will help you to scale your community mapping efforts. There are two tables for you to fill in your response, and you may add more rows as needed. Some examples are in the table for your reference. You are welcome to use a different format in your response, but please make sure to include these details.

While osmcal is already running well and people are keeping it filled with new events, I want to push osmcal further and make it the default choice.

People have already expressed numerous wishes on the issue tracker and in-person. Notably I want to focus on the next three features: time zone support, integration into OSM wiki and integration widgets. I want to spend the money to be able to develop those.

Time Zone Support

In the beginning, I assumed we wouldn‘t need time zone support at all, since all events have a location, but since there are online events, which can target people from different time zones, this has become important, especially due to the new Corona virus. This needs a good user interface for event creators (so we only ask about time zones if it‘s relevant, e.g. an online event) and it needs support in the feeds as well as the API.

OSM Wiki Integration

A lot of people are still using the OSM Wiki Calendar, either because they prefer it - or more often - are simply not aware of osmcal. I want to bring those worlds together and create a calendar integration into the OSM Wiki, either through an extension or a bot. That way pages of e.g. local groups could display their next events without manual work.

Integration Widgets

Some local chapters or regional organisations would like to have a calendar listing on their website. To simplify this, I would like to create small widgets that make it simple to integrate osmcal into other websites. Such functionality could also enable an integration of osmcal into Weekly or the main osm.org site.

Budget breakdown

Give your budget breakdown here. If you would like to present your budget in a tabular format, you can use this tool to convert your spreadsheet into a wikitable and paste the code below here

My usual hourly rate is 100 €, but I will discount it by 50% for the OSMF, which gives me a time budget of 100 hours.

Item What do you plan to spend the money on? Expected cost per unit (in Euros) Quantity Expected total cost (in Euros) Why is it needed? (Please give as much detail as possible.)
My Development Work Time Zone Support 50 € 16 800 € See above
Wiki Integration 50 2500 €
Integration/JavaScript Widgets 34 1700 €

If you receive a grant, what do you aim to achieve?

It is recommended that this supports mission of the OSM Foundation and your local community. Please provide us with any information you think is relevant including the metrics you expect to achieve. Please write 100-200 words.

As described in "What do you need the grant money for?" I want to develop features that make it easier for people taking the initiative to organize events. In the current situation with more and more online events this needs to expand as well and the outlined features shall make it easier to reach out and connect. I want osmcal to become the standard calendar and that everyone will think in a few years time that it already has been there forever.

Do you receive funding from any other sources at the moment?

If you receive funding from other organisations currently, please state how much this is, whether the donations are regular or one off, and how these funds have been raised. Please write no more than 300 words. If you have any sources of co-funding for this grant application, please provide details. Examples of this might be if you have any partners who would be willing to match grant funding if you receive it, or if your project has existing funding. Please provide as much detail as possible.

There is no funding at all for OpenStreetMap Calendar. Personally, I am a freelance software developer, often deploying OpenStreetMap-based solutions for customers.

Is there anything you would like OSMF to support you with?

If there is anything which you would like OSMF to support you with in order to strengthen your project, please let us know. For example, this could include building relationships with OSM communities, sourcing updated imagery for mapping projects, or guidance on how to use some of the tools we have created. We want to do our best to support OSM communities, so please let us know what you need. Please write no more than 150 words.

  • Positive affirmations
  • Give the possibility to run OSMCAL on OSMF infrastructure as soon as it's ready and maybe being able to add extension to the wiki, if this should turn out necessary.
  • Maybe help with a privacy policy


By submitting this form to the OpenStreetMap Foundation, you certify the information contained in this application is correct, and that if you are awarded a grant, you will use it only for the purposes described above. You will provide written documentation and receipts for all of your expenses to the OSM Foundation to demonstrate this. You understand that the decisions made by the OSM Foundation Microgrants committee are final.

Thomas Skowron, thomersch


Community members are encouraged to endorse your project request here!

  • I endorse this proposal. – Minh Nguyễn 💬 16:10, 10 May 2020 (UTC)
  • A simple-to-use calendar is a basic infrastructure tool we need to support the growth of the community worldwide. Happy to endorse. - Ed Freyfogle
  • I endorse this proposal. Definitely a nice improvement compared to the current way to manage OSM related events – jbelien (talk) 15:00, 15 May 2020 (UTC)
  • I endorse this proposal. OSMCal is helping a lot if you are a organizer or attendee of an event. I really would like to see these new features. Gislars (talk) 07:17, 20 May 2020 (UTC)
  • I endorse this proposal. OSMCal is already a promising alternative to the current templates-based system of the OSM Wiki. I eventually would want the calendar to become more integrated with the OSM website itself maybe via the ongoing microcosms development by Brian DeRocher. —seav (talk) 04:49, 21 May 2020 (UTC)