Tag Archives: smap

version 17.08

This release adds support for odk parameters.   Actually currently there is only one parameter supported and that is max-pixels which can be used to reduce the size of photographs taken in a form.


Open the form in the online editor and select “Parameters” as the property you want to change.  Then find an image you want to reduce.  Then set the max-pixels parameter to the size you want.  For example:


The number is the maximum length in pixels of the long edge of the image.


  1. As well as SmapServer 17.08 you will need fieldTask version 5.06
  2. There is no support in xlsForm for parameters yet hence you will need to enter the parameter in the online editor as described above.
  3. You can consider parameters and appearance as doing very similar things .  In the past appearance was used for many of the capabilities that odk will now be adding using parameters.
  4. Help is available in the reference guide.  https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B5_SmpWlQYxvWlBoWkdiT3FrY1U/edit


Release of Smap HTML / iPhone Evaluation Tools

Announcing Smap Evaluation Tools Server version 13.09.  New functionality includes:

  1. Support for completing surveys on a web browser. Browsers need to support HTML5 and can be on a laptop, iPhone, Android or Windows Mobile .
  2. Automatic dropping of duplicate surveys.  Previously the duplicate would have been marked as “bad” so that it did not appear in exported results or graphs however these duplicates could still be seen in table views.
  3. Calculate questions are now shown in the exported spreadsheet in their correct position relative to other questions in the survey.  So if you add a question to calculate the age in months after a date of birth question, then age in months will appear after DOB in the exported results.
  4. If you explicitly specify a “start time”, “end time” or IMEI question in your survey then these are no longer automatically added by Smap as well

WebForm Evaluation Tool


Screen shot of web form in Chrome browser on a  Mac laptop


  • Uses the open source Enketo forms engine
  • (Should) work in any HTML5 capable browser
  • GPS coordinates
  • Multi- choice and single select questions
  • Integer and text questions
  • Uploading of photographs (on some browsers, those with better HTML5 support)
  • Repeating groups
  • Relevance
  • Works offline and saves results for submission later when there is a network connection


The web forms feature is really a beta release so you can expect to find some issues.  Report any you find and we will try to get them fixed in the next release.  Known issues include:

  1. Some odk 1.4 functions that depend on javarosa do not work.  For example the new date time functions.
  2. Surveys that have images in their questions or options will not work with webForms
  3. Large surveys may be slow particularly when downloading or expanding a conditional group
  4. Safari on iPhone has some additional restrictions:
  • File uploads are not supported on Safari / iPhone
  • Expansion of conditional groups that are made relevant based on responses to prior questions do not work

Phone Browsers


Situation Assessment using Safari on an iPhone


Situation Assessment using Chrome on Android








Applications for the web forms feature

The ability to complete forms on web browsers adds a lot of flexibility to your data collection. For example it is now possible to send out an email or tweet with a link to a survey that the recipient can complete on their browser.


This is straightforward and very similar to previous installation.  Updated instructions are in the README file.  If you have an existing smap installation you should be able to just run the webformsInstall script to update the platform to support webForms (MySQL and PHP).  You can then deploy the updated application code as before.  Contact me if you have any issues.

If you are installing your own server you can get it from here.

Deployment onto Smap Managed Servers

I will progressively deploy this release onto the servers managed by Smap Consulting over the next few days.  However the ability to complete surveys using WebForms may not suit everyone.  Hence I will disable this functionality by default on each server unless you request that it be switched on.


Web Forms uses the excellent Enketo toolkit. This toolkit has been integrated into Smap by the following undergraduate students from RMIT who have done an excellent job.

  • HeeSien Ooi
  • Kar Ming Clement Kam
  • Kiman Sze
  • Mohamad Bahaa Maarouf
  • Shishir Chawla
  • Teck We Kee


Announcement of Smap Release – May 2013

This release contains mainly bug fixes and minor improvements.  There was one major bug related to the pooling of database connections. Fortunately this didn’t cause any problems on the hosted servers as I had not enabled pooling.  But if you installed the server yourself, where it is enabled by default,then you may have noticed some issues.  I strongly recommend that you upgrade to this latest release.  http://smap-suite.googlecode.com/files/smap_13_05_01.tgz

Other changes include:

  1. You can assign a task where the location is described as a polygon rather than just a point.

    Task Management

    A task with polygon location on the phone

  2. “Relevance” was not working on repeating groups. Now it does.
  3. I removed the Twitter panel from the dashboard.
  4. Audio files are played in the media player.  At least it works for AMR files.
  5. Address items can be added to a new task. These items are selectable from an existing survey.  Hence if you are doing follow up surveys you can include data from the original survey to guide the user to the right location.
  6. The addresses of tasks can be printed, and address items can be set to be barcodes.  Hence the enumerator can get the barcode from the address in order to link the new survey to the old survey.