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Within and beyond: the Ortigas-Mandaluyong Mapping Party

Like every other Saturday in May, it’s hot and humid. But that didn’t stop us from providing employees, locals, tourists, and expats (Expatriate families and individuals) a more detailed coverage of the Ortigas and Mandaluyong area. Yes, we’ve managed to map a piece of Metro Manila – again.

After Cubao and Marikina, it was Ortigas and Mandaluyong’s turn to get some OSM love. This was the alternative to the Corregidor mapping party, which did not push through due to various factors.

Me and my mother went to Starbucks Metrowalk and arrived at 8 in the morning, and we didn’t expect other mappers to come that early. [it was an actual mea culpa on my part, as I misread the Facebook event page at that time]  After 8:30 AM, most of the mappers were there, including Maning, Eugene, Marloue (one of the OSM Pioneers in the Mindanao area), Bart, Rica and Rally. Jimmy, who was sitting at a nearby table with his companion (presumably his wife), came in earlier. [By the way, Bart and Rica joined OpenStreetMap during the Marikina Mapping Party]

Before the actual mapping, we discussed a lot of OpenStreetMap-related stuff, including the Bacolod hullabaloo, my recent run-in with that guy-who’s-concerned-with-his-privacy-and-doesn’t-want-his-housenumber-to-be-on-the-map (here, here and here), an edit that I screwed up in eastern Mindanao (This experience reminded me that using the live edit option of Potlatch is only for “edits that could affect a small area without screwing up the nearby areas”. Also, you can “be bold” but exercise A LOT OF CAUTION when editing other areas.) and other mapping-related stuff. Before leaving the cafe, we picked our slices (see below) and left for those places (again, see below)

Slice 1 (Northern Ortigas) – Eugene [seav]

Slice 2 (Southern Ortigas) – Rally [Rally] and me [ianlopez1115]

Slice 3 (Metrowalk/Ortigas Home Depot) – Marloue [murlwe]

Slice 4 (Greenfield District/Buayang Bato) – Jimmy [jayzee] and his wife/companion

Slice 5 (Highway Hills) – Maning [maning], Bart [linuxbastard] and Rica

We left Starbucks Metrowalk a few minutes before 10 in the morning and filled up Rally’s car at a nearby Caltex Station. After that, we mapped the EDSA Shangri-La area, and passed through Amethyst Road, Escriva Drive via Pearl Drive, Gold Loop, Pearl Drive and Exchange Road before briefly stopping at Benpres Building to ask for the opening hours of the museum. We eventually ate our lunch at Red Ribbon Shaw – after passing through Jade Drive, Amethyst Road and Escriva Drive (again). During the ~30 minute lunch, we discussed various mapping-related ideas and plans (kilometer markers, gates denoting access restrictions, the not-yet-renderable-and-searchable branch tags, and the 25 Cities Project of mine).

After the lunch, we sped off towards Meralco Avenue via Pearl Drive and Exchange Road, adding more POI’s along the way. Passing through Shaw Boulevard, one of us noticed a Burger Machine. I promptly added it using Rally’s Eee PC, a prominent part of Rally’s “mobile mapping rig” in the Tagaytay Mapping Party. (If you want some tips from him [specifically the mobile mapping rig/buddy mapping system], go here [Warning: Long Email].) Another Burger Machine approximately 300 meters NW from the first, another waypoint added.

We passed through the EDSA Shangri-La area (again). This time, I encoded some POI’s on the laptop. On our way to get POI’s outside of the assigned slice, we lost the GPS signal as soon as we entered passed through the SM Megamall portion of Doña Julia Vargas Avenue. As soon as the car veered to the right towards St. Francis Street, the GPS traces “reappeared” out of nowhere (or so we thought). After taking a final set of waypoints in the assigned slice, we then went to the Valle Verde area. At one time, Rally remembered something – I think it was about adding a convenience store called Jewel 24. As soon as one of us saw it, I typed down the correct name – Jewels 24. Same thing with a nearby restaurant called Aysees (now known as Aysee on the map).

One crucial part of the map was added due to our joint efforts – a turn restriction relation at the corner of Saint Paul and Meralco Avenue. By the way, the area is close to the Eastern Police District Annex, meaning near-constant windfall. (If you don’t know what that means, then try driving your car at 3 PM in the San Miguel/El Pueblo area [if and only if your car’s plate number ends in 1 and 2 for Monday, 3 and 4 for Tuesday, and so on]). We then finished the “slightly” enlarged slice by scouting for Valle Verde gates and looking for “complementary POIs” in Metrowalk including a pet shop called Pussies and Bitches [shop=pets; found at the eastern side]. After getting “enough” POIs, it was time for the three of us to head over to SM Megamall for the meet-up and editing session.

After 10 minutes of walking and navigating through the area, me and my mother were able to go to Starbucks in the Megastrip section of the said place. (Rally showed up a few minutes after me and my mother went inside the said establishment) I believe that one of the mappers who was present at that time could have texted me and/or Rally in jejemonese via the Jologs-inator.

During the meet-up, I was informally introduced to Merkaartor (OSM Wiki, website). For me, Merkaartor is an excellent editor, since it allows you to fine tune your edits in OpenStreetMap. At one time, Bart needed my help, since he wanted to upload a bunch of waypoints. Solution: Retrieve GPS trace/waypoints using NAViLinkII, Use MWaypoint, drag a .gpx file that has “WPT” on it, and upload to OSM as a private trace.

After making initial edits of the Ortigas/Mandaluyong area and having informal conversation with fellow mappers, it was time to leave. But before that, the obligatory photo-op.

The photo-op (Taken by my mother)

(If you want to see the limited shots that I took during the Mapping Party, click here.)

UPDATE: While this post is being typed, OpenStreetMap Philippines is now incorporated and registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission as a non-stock corporation. Thank you, Andre!

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4 responses to “Within and beyond: the Ortigas-Mandaluyong Mapping Party

  1. Very nice writeup. May I borrow your pictures for the Facebook Fan page for OSM PH?

  2. Permission granted, all conditions waived.

  3. telly buhay ⋅

    Hi. Nice read. Though in one of you links (“long email”), I can’t help but wonder by this line:

    “more with less movements if you do a buddy while mapping”

    Hahaha. Anyways congratulations to all!

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