A social mapping application for crowdsourced information gathering

Shareabouts is a web application for crowdsourced mapping. It’s intended to be customized for specific purposes, such as collecting public input on suitable locations for stations in a city-wide bike share.

Shareabouts has a simple, fun interface that makes it easy to add your voice to the map: suggest a location, add a comment, support other suggestions and share locations with your friends and neighbors.This map-based feedback method allows for highly flexible differentiation of types of feedback based on category and icon configurations, photo upload capability, surveying and the ability to link specific contents to map layers other than the one currently being used. The goal of the tool is to provide geography-based feedback and the ability to develop a rich understanding of that feedback through detailed spatial analysis. Behind the scenes, it’s a Rails app running on PostGIS spatial database, with a nice mapping front end.

Shareabouts is an open source tool, available for download and alteration on GitHub for communities with coding expertise. The tool is regularly revised on the feedback of GitHub users. Communities can use the ShareAbouts code for free, or can retain Open Plans to manage the site for a $500 set up fee and $300/month subscription for the length of the intended event. Communities can also obtain a fully customized ShareAbouts from the organization for a fee of about $9,900.

Some core design concepts in mind for Shareabouts:

  • Add New Places
    Adding places is easy; the simple interface lets users quickly drop pins on the map with descriptions and other useful information
  • Social media logins
    Map users can now use Twitter or Facebook to sign in. Right away, your ticker will feature user avatars, and users don’t need to enter their names over and over.
  • Comment on Places
    Engage your audience in meaningful conversation. Users can leave [rich media] comments on places.
    • Explore Places and Comments
      The map allows users to find places and comments in their areas of interest.
    • Show Support
      Need to know which places are most popular? Users can vote for their favorite places to show their support.
    • Social Sharing
      Harness the power of viral marketing. Users engage their social network when they share places on Twitter and Facebook.
    • Activity Feed
      See a list of recently submitted places, comments, and support.
    • Place Types
      Collect information about different types of places. Data filtering by place type.
    • Responsive Design
    • Configurable Surveys
      Want to collect specific information? Flexible data storage allows you to create your own surveys. Crowdsource more than just comments.
    • Custom Map Layers
      Overlay pertinent geographic data. Applying your custom style rules, the Shareabouts map can pull in your GeoJson URLs as additional map layers.
    • Internationalization
      Do your users speak various languages? Shareabouts is internationalizable. It’s easy to customize the user interface with locale-specific translations.
  • PDX Bike Share Map in Portland
    Shareabouts Portland
  • Bike Share Philadelphia
    Shareabouts Philadelphia
  • CityCampKC bike facilities mapper in Kansas City
    Shareabouts CityCampKC
  • Shareabouts has been used for the development of the Vision Zero Initiative in the New York City. This version of Shareabouts incorporates Google Street View, so when users click on the intersection, they will actually see what it looks like and be able to place the marker exactly where they want to note a problem.The NYC Department of Transportation asks New Yorkers to comment on intersections where the following dangerous conditions exist: not enough time to cross; double parking; long wait to cross; red-light running; jaywalking; poor visibility; speeding; long distance to cross; failure to yield to pedestrians; and cyclist behavior. As you’ll see on the map, thousands of locations have already been noted. Where an issue has already been noted by someone else, you can comment, or click to show your agreement.shareabouts