Welcome to Maptime Boulder!

We are a group of map enthusiasts that meet regularly in Boulder, Colorado! You can always find us at:

Check out some of the latest resources we've compiled:

Upcoming Events

Past Events

Creating fun graphics with OSM data!

We’re going to be artsy this month! We’ll use OSM data to create screen-print designs!!! You can use these to make your own T-shirts, skirts, pillows or whatever you’d like! Many people are putting OSM data on clothing, posters, etc. Let’s look at some simple ways to create these graphics with QGIS.

Come with tools that enable you to get OSM data into graphics files, like a laptop loaded with QGIS and the QuickOSM plugin. We’ll collectively figure out fun ways to do this. Or bring just a sketch pad if you want to be inspired and play with ideas on paper to work on later. For inspiration, look at what others have done printing OSM data on clothes:,

And yes, that’s a picture of a cake… you can screen print cakes, I’ve heard… there just might be cake.

-Your Maptime Boulder Organizers

NOTE: We won’t be hosting a July 5th meetup as many folks will be out of town.

Instructions + Notes

The goal of tonight’s meetup is to install and explore the abilities of QGIS for styling and representing data from OpenStreetMap.

What’s special about OSM data? It has a little bit of everything. Want a pretty good street network? Sure. Want endless amounts of metadata to filter and style off? Absolutely!

1. Install QGIS

QGIS (QuantumGIS) is an Open-Source GIS software available on all platforms. Download Page

QGIS 2 or QGIS 3?

If you have experience with using QGIS 2, I recommend sticking with what works and you’re familiar with…

2. Install a plugin to handle OpenStreetMap data

There are a variety of tools to get OSM data into QGIS. QuickOSM is a popular one. If you already have an OSM file, QGIS can import the file with a limited schema (limited metadata).

Rather download larger chunks of OSM data?

For simplicity, and if you’d like to incorporate more metadata, here are two files to start with: both Denver and Boulder. These have all OSM attributes…



3.Load into QGIS and Filter/Style

Instructions here will vary based on your data and version of QGIS…. This is what we’ll play with tonight

4. Export your map as an image…

and see what it could look like on a shirt, or hat, or blanket, or… whatever!

There are a variety of services online, here are two that offer low-quantity printing on various mediums:

Vista Prints


Last Edited by Jennings, June 7, 2018

Event Date: Thursday, Jun 07 2018

Batch Loading to OSM: Ethics and Methods

Now that we’ve had experience ( editing in OpenStreetMap as individual contributors, we’re going to investigate ways large updates to OSM can be implemented and how people go about planning and executing them.

There is a large import of Colorado data happening soon and we’ve recruited some of those involved in the process and data curation to come and talk with us in a round-table discussion on May 3rd.

Some questions to get us started:

  1. Where does this data come from?
  2. Who will maintain it? How does it get maintained?
  3. What does the process look like, technically?

We hope you can make it to this round-table discussion of OSM data imports! Please RSVP and post any questions you’d like seed the conversation with in the comments below!

Event Date: Thursday, May 03 2018

Learn how to edit in OpenStreetMap and work on a Humanitarian OSM project!

• What we’ll do

Interested in learning how to edit in OpenStreetMap and contributing to a humanitarian project? Join us for creating geospatial data where it’s needed on the globe! As April 5th gets closer, we’ll select an appropriate task to work on and post the project choice here. Stay tuned!

• What to bring

A laptop and and a mouse (the latter makes editing geospatial data easier, but it isn’t necessary).

Event Date: Thursday, Apr 05 2018

Hand (and computer) drawn hillshades!

• What we’ll do

We’ll actually give a go at hand-drawing some hillshades and potentially play with getting a computer to do it! Take a look at the following blog posts for inspiration! One by John Nelson and one by Andy Woodruff:

Bring a pencil & paper and/or a laptop to this creative session!

NOTE – we will be starting at 6:30pm (thirty minutes later than normal)

• What to bring

Pencils or pens, paper, any pre-layout work wanted and a laptop (if desired)

Event Date: Thursday, Mar 01 2018

Happy 2018! Join in Map Origami and Topic Picking for the year

For 2018, Maptime Boulder is planning on meeting the first Thursday of EVERY month!

EXCEPT for our first meeting of 2018, because your organizers are both away/busy… so:

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 7th in the Flatirons Rm. on the second floor.

We’ll start with a fun session of map origami while we discuss the topics we want to investigate. Dig through car door stashes and bring old maps, silly tourist brochures with cartoon pathways and what-have-you for folding into art! Fun times. We’ll provide some suggested folding instructions.

Also bring suggestions for topic sessions we should host this year!!!

Do you want to:

  • Get an introduction to R?

  • Share secret cartography tricks?

  • Jump in on some HOTOSM validating?

  • Explore 3D mapping?

  • What else?

Let us know and we’ll start stacking up ideas and volunteers that may want to lead a Maptime for our Thursday meetings. Share your curiosity and your knowledge!


Your Maptime Boulder Team

p.s. If you’re a die-hard Maptimer and Thursdays don’t work for you, please let us know.

Event Date: Wednesday, Feb 07 2018