Saturday, May 23, 2009

Mistakes with incident descriptions

Moved to this Google Sites page: Mistakes with Incident Descriptions. People were missing the original post above when this was at the top of the list. This relates to an already fixed problem where some people's incident descriptions were erroneusly reported as "Died of a non-combat related injury."


Rick Klau said...

Sean - what about a Google Docs spreadsheet form that requests clarifications/corrections? That'd let you share the doc with a group of people who are willing to chip in, and then one they have verified fixes that need to get made in the KML layer, you can work from that as a kind of to-do list.

Sean said...

Thanks for the idea Rick. I actually already have a prototype of a spreadsheet form just for this purpose. I need to polish it a little before publicly releasing it... but the bigger issue is finding the volunteers. Ultimately, approaching some of the gold star family orgs I've worked with on this project might be a good fit.

So it's definitely in the works, I just need to get some sleep and rally some volunteers. I've received contacts for a few people on the "Help with corrections" links... so hopefully this is something we can start moving on soon.



Unknown said...

What about something along the lines of ReCaptcha? Or perhaps a "trouble ticket" system where approved volunteers can go in and handle the requests and update the status for you to handle.

Just a thought- please let us know how we can help!

Unknown said...

Wanted you to know, you've got a mapping glitch. Soldiers who died at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio Texas are recorded in Montgomery County Kansas.

Tisson Mathew said...

Thank you


Bill F. said...

Hey Sean,

Any idea why the information about each soldier doesn't load when I click on an icon?

I get nothing but a blank box whenever I click on any icon.

I've got Google Earth 5 loaded, so that's not the hitch!

Thanks for your advice...and for a powerful project. My sixth grade students are going to be amazed---and have a whole new respect for soldiers today.

Bill Ferriter

The Giraffe Head Tree said...

Yours is definitely one of the most worthy Blogs of Note, Sean. I intend to spread the word of its existence, and I commend you for your efforts. Undoubtedly there will be errors to correct but that's the nature of the beast. No one should doubt the sincerity of your heart. I wish you well and good luck with your venture.

tim.towner said...

Sean, great job and a great honor to our fallen troops. This is a way for all of us to put a face with a name. CNN is definitely promoting this and I thank you for putting the work into it.

Unknown said...

#1629 Jefferey Blanton, Fayetteville, GA is listed in Fayetteville, AR

Pelican Fly said...

great ideas, and I valued the dead of soldiers (and civilians). It's just sad that only US soldiers are honored. How about 2 millions lives perished in Iraq and hundred thousands in Afghanistan. If we are kind enough we should put each and every individuals on the map as well.

And while CNN keep talking about your map application today and they did mention non-US deaths. I just feel more and more confused, sad and disappointed as why some lives are more appreciated than others, not to mention that US soldiers has been killing hundred times more than they were killed.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing.

Sean said...

Thanks for letting me know. I've noticed that a few other people are accidentally placed in a town of the same name, but in a different state.

Looks like the geocoding service I'm using returned some inaccurate information.

I'll take a look at my program to see how I can fix this. Shouldn't be too hard.


Nancy Brown said...

Sean, I am willing to volunteer my time to assist you. I am the President of and would love to help you make the corrections needed. Contact me at

Sean said...

@Pelican Fly

This map includes both military casualties from US and other Coalition countries, from OEF and OIF, which is the scope of this project.

As stated in the original post, I well aware that this map only presents a slice of the bigger picture.

In regards specifically to the Iraqi and Afghani casualties, part of the challenge is the availability of information. Unfortunately, there just isn't as much personal information about them. However, I am aware of some sources for Iraqi casualties.

If you are passionate about this, and have some programming skill, I'd love to hear your ideas. Do a little research and you'll find my interests are quite broad. But as stated before, I'm just one person doing this in my free time...

Ryan Kearney said...

Crashes while loading. Have latest Google Earth.


I had to take time out for a moment of silence.
Thank you.

L said...

You open your audience wider and draw more respect for the subject and soldiers because your site isn't plastered with American flags and papered with God/country references. So the rest of us don't feel excluded, and what we feel instead is more at the core of what matters - that this crosses borders, and matters to even those of us outside your country, because it's about sacrifices of individual human beings. That's a delicate balance you've managed to reach.

This is also such a cool, resonant argument for things that can happen with open source.

Cris Waller said...

I have a Mac with the newest version of Google Earth as specified in your requirements, and unfortunately your map still crashes my Google Earth. Any ideas?

Unknown said...

Sean, I just wanted to say "Thank you".

Jeremy Tarbush said...

I'm new to this blog, but this is a good project you've started. I am a former Army Infantryman and I'm sure me and my buddies will be looking for some of my comrades.

Baldwin Park Democrat said...

It's an awesome application. Thanks for remembering our troops in this very visual way.

Trent River Waterman said...

...thanks for your efforts, they are very much appreciated by this veteran...blessings to you

Ginny said...

Your blog is amazing!

prashant said...

actually already have a prototype of a spreadsheet form just for this purpose. I need to polish it a little before publicly releasing it.

Work From Home

Unknown said...

Outstanding! Thank you for this committment and service to our fallen, their families, and their brothers and sisters who fought by their sides.

Your link is duly and respectfully posted on the ANGLICO forum.

Semper Fi

EC said...


What an outstanding job you have done!

My name is Walter R.E. Coleman and I am the Chairman of the Fallen Heroes Foundation. We are the foundation that will be building the United States National Memorial that will honor all of the Fallen Airmen, Marines, Sailors, and Soldiers that gave their lives in The Gulf War, and Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.

Because of the Size of the Memorial (15 acres), and insufficient land availability in Washington, DC, it will be situated in northern Texas.

We would like your permission to place a link to you on our site. As we continue to speak to the families of the Fallen, we would like to provide them with your site as a reference tool.

I may be contacted at the email address below.

Best Regards,

Walter R.E. Coleman (Evan)
Fallen Heroes Foundation
Main:(817) 808-2138
Web Site:

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