Open Data Kit

Read how our organisation found a easy approach in collecting and managing survey data. Learn about the new technology Open Data Kit (ODK) and its usefulness in your organisation.

Imagine you need to survey 50,000 people and then depict the same on the map. If you try going the traditional way of capturing the data with pen and paper, I wonder how much paper resources are you going to invest. Also, it would need proper facility to keep the data safe and now if you are asked to analyse the data, you better ought to be a high IQ person or else performing human mistake is something you can never omit.

The collection of the data and analysis of the same plays a major role in implementing any field related project and people find the job very cumbersome. The management of large data is often seen difficult by people and organizations end up spending large amount of money in hiring experts or outsourcing the field implementation to other organizations.

Though I come from the technical background, my ideology was no different and creating or handling large survey data tricked me as well. This was the case till I was introduce with a new platform for creating Survey and Handling the data. The technology is called Open Data Kit (ODK). The technology is best suited for surveying purposes and after initial hands-on on the technology, I feel it very user friendly and easy to adapt. By using it, organizations can save a lot of money which was earlier spent in buying technology or subletting the job.

So what exactly is Open Data Kit? ODK is a free and open-source set of tools which help organizations author, field, and manage mobile data collection solutions. It provides an out-of-the-box solution for users to Build, Collect and Aggregate data. Let us go a little technical here and understand it a bit better. It include the following tools:

ODK Collect which is a form of an android application for filling in forms. The key feature to note here is these form can collect multimedia including images, audio and even videos as well.

Then we have ODK Aggregate which runs on a server. It is kind of repository of the data collected by ODK Collect. The data can also be exported to a variety of other tools like Google Fusion Table, Google Earth and Google Maps. Interesting? Isn’t it? Now you are able to do something which was a dream before. And guess what, you don’t need to be a high very IQ person. Well I could do it and I can assure any person can be easily trained to do.

Lastly, for creating purpose, there are two authoring tools- ODK Build and XLS Form. ODK Build include simple drag and drop tools for creating simple form. XLS Form uses MS Excel to form larger spread sheet and create complex form.

And that’s all! Breaking all your fear against data collection and more.

All this is very simple to work with and very user friendly. Large data can be easily handled using ODK and the technology is absolutely free of cost.

Well, if you feel interested in this technology and want to build skills in the toolkit mentioned, we are pleased to inform you that we have expertise in this software and readily provide training to individuals and organizations. Feel free to contact us and we will train you well enough to create, collect and aggregate your own survey or data. Write us on and we will solve all your queries.

The following two tabs change content below.

Shristi Dimri

Engineering Graduate I believe in the theory of Universe and where the whole universe revolves around you and you are the Hero of your story. Utilize your skills and fulfill your dreams! Things fall their places for you this way.

Latest posts by Shristi Dimri (see all)