Working Group Minutes/EWG 2021-09-16

From OpenStreetMap Foundation


  • Rob Savoye
  • Tobias Knerr
  • Paul Norman (later than the chairperson election, thus 4 votes there)
  • Roland Olbricht
  • Adam Hoyle

Formal topics

Confirm validity of meeting, Minutes

No concerns whether the meeting is valid. More than half of the working group is already present in the beginning of the meeting.

Adam volunteers to write minutes during the meeting. To facilitate reading, abbreviations shall be avoided. Roland promises to make proper minutes from that.

New members

The working group accepts Brandon as a new member.

The working group follows the process of the OSMF's other working groups for new members, in particular the Communications Working Group: If no members of the Engineering Working Group object within 1 week then member is elected. If there are objections then it goes to a vote.

Chairperson election

One candidate for Chairman - Roland Olbricht. Roland is voted for Chairman with 3 votes and 1 abstention. Agreed to follow other working groups and have no fixed term of chairperson.

Further advertisement

We want to share the blogpost elsewhere ourselves: - on the dev list and the Development forum (@Tobias) - OSMUS Slack (@Adam)

Meetings shall be announced on OsmCal (@Tobias) - agreed all meetings will be public, unless there is a need for them to be private (e.g. discussing grant applications).

Member statements

One idea to ensure we have more blog posts can be to have every member write a short motivation what one would like to achieve, what one brings for the working group, and what one sees as potential Conflicts of Interests. Should always be accompangned by the reminder that we want more members. Suggestion to post it on other places that we haven't reached (e.g. people's own blogs, or OpenStreetMap diary and/or forum). @Tobias, @Roland and @Adam agreed to write one.

People to ask directly

Any ideas so far?

Individuals: @Tobias has some that he needs to consider further.

Some groups can be a starting point to pick individuals to ask directly: - Current or former Google Summer of Code mentors - Members of former incarnations of Engineering Working Group - look through participant list of OpenStreetMap hack weekends and similar events for additional ideas (and/or visit them and invite people in person)

We have one person who has contacted the working group to join: @Roland will ask him for his OpenStreetMap username and explain the process for new members.

@Tobias - Add note to Engineering Working Group's Join Us Page to tell the new member process: "If no members of the Engineering Working Group object within 1 week then member is elected, if there are objections then it goes to a vote"

Actual business

Ideas for long term goals

We had a longer discussion which sources we shall screen for ideas. Wiki pages like the one about the API 0.7 are likely to have a too bad effort-benefit ratio to screen.

Some ideas to avoid misunderstandings from staying at the meta level:

There are a number of engineering tasks that have been stuck for a long time. Add an area data type, getting rid of untagged nodes and adding position information to ways.

Redoing the messaging system on the website.

Other ideas may follow, this list is not meant to be exhaustive. We agree that these ideas are on a timescale of some years.

Ideas for initial projects

We will need to generate ideas for project proposals - could ask either general community or specific groups. E.g. what software issues are impeding their work.

Data Working Group are considering development work, we should connect with them to let them know we are available.

The idea of a Talent Pool got mixed reception. We would offer a call for proposals rather than operate a Talent Pool.

We want to create a list of locations to post proposals. We agree after some discussion that the dev@ list alone is too narrow.

Top Ten Tasks deferred due to lack of time.

Next meeting

Will happen on 2021-10-04 19:00 UTC.