Digital field mapping for everyone
2021-09-27, 09:00–13:00, Frida Kahlo

The workshop is dedicated to professionals, researchers and students that needs to collect data in the field. It will walk participants through the use of the mobile application SMASH for Android and IOS devices and show how to synchronize the survey with a centralized survey server.

SMASH is a userfriendly and intuitive mobile application for digital field mapping developed to support the work of technicians in the field, offering a mapping environment with real time GPS position and the possibility to take georeferenced notes and pictures. Furthermore, the app provides a powerful support for structured data collection based on customized forms. Forms may contain combo and check boxes, text fields and pictures organized over multiple tabs. Background data on the map view can be personalized using available local data or on-line services with the possibility to use vector offline Mapsforge basemaps, shapefile, Geopackage, PostGIS or GPX offline data. Vector layers can be visualized in the map view with a custom style based on the SLD standard definitions. Raster layers can be in Geopackage, tiff+png+jpg with wtf, and Mbtiles offline databases, or as a WMS/TMS online service.

Desktop applications from the HortonMachine project support preparation of the base raster data to load into Smash, preparation of overlay vector layers, design of forms, visualization and export into geopackage or shapefile format of the data collected in the field (GPS tracks, text notes, pictures and form based notes).
The workshop starts with an introduction of the application, installation and description of the main features. Then a short section is dedicated to the preparation of the input data: background maps and forms. The user can test the application directly on her/his device depending on the GPS signal. Finally the export of the collected data is handled using the data of the user or a common dataset provided in the course material. The collected data can then be visualized or used directly in a GIS environment using everyone’s preferred GIS.
The final part is dedicated to the centralized survey server and how to connect SMASH to synchronize incrementally a survey and view its history.

Authors and Affiliations

Antonello Andrea (1) (2)
Franceschi Silvia (1)

(1) HydroloGIS S.r.l.
(2) Free University of Bolzano


1 - Principiants. No required specific knowledge is needed.

Requirements for the Attendees

Participants will need a mobile device (IOS or Android) and a desktop computer to be able to follow the workshop hands on.

While SMASH is installed during the workshop, it might be good to download the Hortonmachine desktop application. The current latest version is available here:

Environmental engineer addicted to scientific GIS development, playing in the field of hydrologic and geomorphologic modelling. Cofounder of the engineering consulting company HydroloGIS, lecturer of Advanced Geomatics at the Free University of Bolzano. OSGeo charter member and coordinator of the Hortonmachine, Geopaparazzi and SMASH projects.