Mapping on LDS site--easily programmable filters + overlays

So you have the BIG idea that the Church or community needs to develop. Discuss that idea here. Maybe you just want to make a suggestion on a new forum topic. Let us know.
gaaren
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Mapping on LDS site--easily programmable filters + overlays

Postby gaaren » Sun Jan 08, 2012 2:35 am

I am the Emergency Response Committee (ERC) chair in my ward (Tacoma, WA), & working closely with the stake ERC function. In the event of a disaster, we expect the normal lines of communication & transportation to be compromised. In many areas of Utah, this is not as much of a problem--just lean out your window & everyone in your ward can hear you--but in the field, wards can cover much larger areas. Normal HomeTeaching & VisitingTeaching routes become unworkable. We have divided the ward into districts with a communication tree. Active members walk a route to check on nearby inactives & neighbors, then use FRS radios to call in the results/needs to districts who report on ham (2meter) to ward net control (a ham operator with Bishop & other ward leadership present to make command decisions), who reports on ham to a ham at the StakePres home, who calls in results to BishopStorehouse, who reports to SLC.

At the time I started doing this, the Church didn't have their mapping function as developed as it is now, so I've been manually tracking on spreadsheets & manually mapping (PhotoShop>.jpg) every member & the districts & routes used to check on them. The stake is interested in having such a viable emergency system throughout the stake. This is a lot of work. I've been doing it because I've been committed to the project, but it is much too cumbersome & technically involved to be easily replicated by other wards. It would be so much easier (& make it easy enough that people might actually do it) if just a small amount of additional capability was built into the mapping function of the Church website.

I would like to be able to have:
--Easily programmable flexible fields which can act as filters, like what you already have on there for Teacher, Priest, RS, etc. I realize Teacher/Priest, etc., are items which come right off the member record, so it might have to be handled differently in some important ways. It could be a part of the Church system, or it might just be things which are variable fields which could easily be set by the local ward. If we had such a system, it could easily track whatever the ward leaders want it to. Currently, there are HomeTeaching +VT lists generated by the Church system, but apparently not tied into the mapping function. With this added function, it would be easy to see on the map how the routes/ a particular route/set of routes is geographically distributed. With my ERC function, I could easily assign a district & route code to each household, & the mapping would show everyone on a specific route, in a district, etc. If the fields are flexible, it could be used to generate followup lists for a single activity, etc-----MANY possibilities.

--Another thing which would be useful is to have capability of visual overlays. This one seems much more complex to develop, & may not even be feasible. But it would be nice to see how other things like zip codes, city boundaries, fire & police jurisdictions overlay with church divisions. I do a lot of correlating with the local emergency response functions (police, fire, Tacoma Emergency Management team, county & city Emergency Operation Centers, Safe Streets, FEMA, CERT, etc),& knowing who has overlapping functions in which areas is nearly impossible. Very few right hands know what the left hands are doing, which would make emergency operations in a disaster much cleaner & effective, if it was more clear. Trying to build in the capability of visually drawing lines would not likely be feasible, but it wouldn't be as difficult for the site to generate it, if there were places to enter GPS coordinates which plot lines between points on the outer perimeter of an area. I'm not sure if this is how they already do this in showing the outlines of wards & stakes, but they have some way of doing it.

Maybe there's something already in the works, but I don't know about it.
I'd definitely be interested in being kept in-the-loop.
Gaaren

tommccombs
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Postby tommccombs » Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:03 am

I am the Stake Emergency Preparedness/Communications Specialist for the Deland Florida Stake (We cover the Daytona Beach Coastline). We currently have ERC Zones divided with in each Ward with contacts within a 3 mile radius of Zone Leaders to contact during a disaster. I would like to have overlays to draw Zones (and Home Teaching Areas) to publish Zone Maps during a disaster. I have used Google Earth in the past but have to transfer it to Google Maps to make it work (very time consuming).

The new mapping system has been very useful. Thanks. The ability to draw Home/Visiting Teaching & Emergency Calling Zones would be very helpful.

jthorsen
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easy way of mapping house holds

Postby jthorsen » Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:01 pm

I am a emergency preparedness person also for a ward in the Seattle area. Been looking at a way to easily map households in the ward/stake into google or bing maps. I can export the ward list to excel and get the data I need name and address. Shouldn't be too hard of a process. But I'm not a developer in any means to create a script to do this. Does the church have the means to do this from the website or does someone thats knowledgeable with geocoding/C++/VBA able to create a script that can automate this process

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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:21 pm

jetboy wrote:I am a emergency preparedness person also for a ward in the Seattle area. Been looking at a way to easily map households in the ward/stake into google or bing maps. I can export the ward list to excel and get the data I need name and address. Shouldn't be too hard of a process. But I'm not a developer in any means to create a script to do this. Does the church have the means to do this from the website or does someone thats knowledgeable with geocoding/C++/VBA able to create a script that can automate this process


If you export the ward list from the directory section of the LDS Maps application, then the export will include the exact lat/lon that has been verified for the household, so there will be no need for geocoding.
Questions that can benefit the larger community should be asked in a public forum, not a private message.

adamrpippin
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Postby adamrpippin » Sun Feb 19, 2012 12:09 am

I agree the proposed functionality of the original and/or second post would be a boon - I originally posted the request here: https://tech.lds.org/forum/showthread.php?8343-LDS-Maps-Wish-List&highlight=maps. I am willing to write such an plugin if I can be pointed in the right direction. If not, I'll look into a VBA script that works with perhaps Google Maps.


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