Button to select an offline map file on the phone and move it at the right place

1. What is the general goal of the feature?
Yesterday I had to share a notice with new ODK user.
And I realize that that the explanation about where to put mbtiles in order to use it in the form is not so complicated for us but not so "basic user" friendly.

I thougt a button in the map entry of Collect settings menu, to select the mbtiles on the phone to automatically copy it into the right folder to get it work with my forms.

2. What are some example use cases for this feature?
This could be very helpfull and we could imagine a note, at the begining of any form (a kind of first use note), containing the url to download the mbtile needed for this form...
Should be get for vector tiles too.

3. What can you contribute to making this feature a reality?
I do not have any dev skill... and no Idea about the complexity of such a development.
But we should discuss about the possibility to host french student working on such things we would like to use and share it with the community.

I was just about to suggest a similar feature or a means of transferring maps more simply from Drive or Central / Aggregate...

This is perhaps more relevant now that Android storage migration is required and the location of the folder is less intuitive. Exactly as @mathieubossaert suggests it is difficult to get a new user to load an mbtiles file and people now need to find a folder in [internal storage or sdcard]/Android/data/org.odk.collect.android/files/ - I am just updating some destructions for enumerators on setting up ODK Collect, getting forms etc, and finding it increasingly hard to explain how to put a map on the device in words of one syllable.

My suggestion would be to have a button on the maps 'layer data file' screen that jumps to a configuration screen similar to the 'get blank form' process (assuming that it could be adapted to look for .mbtiles or other vector formats). Then you could, for example, have a folder on Google Drive called ODK layers and navigate to that (with the option of finding 'shared with me' files), or allocate a dedicated folder / space on Central / Aggregate (sorry, don't know how things are stored) depending on what type of server connection is used.

So this could be accessed from the location widget or from the Maps Settings menu, use a similar process to existing set up routine (maybe only needing to adapt a widget rather than create a new one) and also have the least impact on users who don't use offline maps.

I've already gone beyond the point of my competence, so probably couldn't offer more than my usual skills of trying to break things if anyone was minded to take this feature forward :slight_smile:

1 Like