Mind the dusty website

Welcome to maptimeLA!!! If you look at the posts below, it seems we haven’t been doing much, but we have!

As Vectoria the bear trys to keep up with all our explorations and starts to post here, you could in the meantime,

Check out our happenings on twitter @maptimeLA

Or you can see when our next meeting is on Meetup

Posted Oct 07 2016 by Omar Ureta

What MaptimeLA's Been Up To

Since our last post here in January, the Maptime LA group has held eleven meetups and worked on two projects and won a total of three awards. [Insert trophy emojis here]

We’ve been using a combination of in-person project working nights, midnight Slack conversations, Trello task-wrangling, GitHub collaborating, meeting up at people’s houses and going to actual hackathon events to make it all happen.

In the open flexible/structured, learning/making, all-about-beginners space of Maptime, I wanted to note some meta-lessons we’ve learned on how to make projects with a lot of people work.

Handy tools:

  1. Butcher paper
  2. Pens, pencils
  3. Outlets
  4. WiFi
  5. Lots of people!
  6. Online: Slack, GitHub, Trello

Before the event

  • Prepare a GitHub repository of a template with dependencies, comments, documentation and instructions.
  • Download documentation in case the WiFi goes down. Dash for OSX is handy for this.
  • Deploy to gh-pages from the start so people can keep testing it on all sorts of browsers and devices.


  • Find something that interests you and you can actually use
  • Keep the prize categories in mind!

During the event

  • Use a big piece of paper to brainstorm, wireframe and draw out flows. Visual is easier to talk about!
  • Keep it simple: Try to focus on one single user’s use case. For now.
  • Make a list of the most important tasks, and expand them to other types of tasks like: copy (coming up with fun names, slogans, instructions), researching data, cleaning data, documentation, README, cleaning up the code, coming up with images for the presentation… endless!

Keeping code clean and happy

Working on the project

  • Pair people up as much as possible.
  • Why? Pairing is important at a hackathon because it keeps people talking to each other, and you can get a gauge of where they are at.
  • Pairing also makes it easier to find each other’s typos.
  • Ask people “Let’s try..” “Want to try this?”
  • Take lots of breaks :-)

After the event

  • What did you learn? Write it down, post it and share it to people.
  • Make the code into something re-usable and document it.
  • Comment the code to make it easier for others to replicate.

Want to contribute?

  • Make a pull request!
Posted Jun 17 2015 by Machiko Yasuda

Hack Night in the New Year

Our first meeting of 2015 will be a hack night! Bring a project or an idea and bring it to life!

In case you don’t have an active project, or want to attend without feeling obligated to work on a project fear not. This is a space welcoming to people of all skill levels and backgrounds. You can come just hang out, ask questions, learn something new, and meet new people.

The California Geographic Information Association is hosting a Map Contest, and the winner takes home $1500!

We are organizing a team of mappers to compete in the contest and this meetup will be our first organizational meeting.

If you are interested in helping out, please come to the meeting and let us know! Even if you are very new to web mapping, we can use any help we can get for planning and strategy.

Winning this contest would position our chapter to have funds for the next year to pay for administrative things (and maybe even pizza). Help us win pizza!

You can get more information about the contest here -…


  • Rail: 7th Street / Metro Center (Purple, Red, Expo, Blue Lines): Two blocks away
  • Bus: 720


Address: 811 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 1460, Los Angeles, CA

Join us: Thursday, Jan 08 2015

Non-Profit Showcase

Jared Hyneman from World Vision presents on his global geo projects.

Know of a non-profit that uses GIS in their mission?

We’re waiting for more to confirm, and as the holiday refrain goes, the more the merrier!


  • Rail: 7th Street / Metro Center (Purple, Red, Expo, Blue Lines): Two blocks away
  • Bus: 720


Address: 600 Wilshire Blvd., 10th Floor, Suite 1050 — Conference Room

Join us: Thursday, Dec 11 2014

Field Trip to Factual Inc

Hear from the man himself, Tyler Bell gives us a tour and speaks to us about Factual.

Factual is a location platform that enables personalized and contextually relevant mobile experiences by enriching mobile location signals with definitive global data.

Factual’s real-time data stack builds and maintains data on a global scale, with Factual’s core Global Places data covering over 65 million local businesses and points of interest in 50 countries.

Factual’s platform also informs location with contextual demographic and commercial data, and offers cleaning and mapping services for business listings and points of interest.


ATTN: Give yourself an hour to get from downtown to Century City in your car and park at the Westfield Century City Mall for $1/hr. for the first 3 hrs., carpooling highly suggested.


Take the 28/728 bus for the same amount of time and $1.75 each way from downtown.

Tell the front desk you are going up to the meetup at Factual on the 34th floor.

Thanks to Factual for the pizza and beverages!


Address: 1999 Avenue of the Stars, 35th Floor, Los Angeles, CA

Join us: Thursday, Nov 13 2014