Global fixed broadband and mobile (cellular) network performance in the community catalog. You can find the dataset here

Google Earth Engine Makerspace: Community Commons in action

Samapriya Roy
6 min readDec 13, 2021


Communities are what communities build together. Over a year or so ago, I floated the idea of a Google Earth Engine Makerspace at Geo for Good 2020, this was also around the time when I was exploring the idea of community data commons and created the awesome-gee-community datasets catalog. You can read about that earlier project post here. While the idea of commons is not new , creative a community commons extends beyond tangible resources and is quite often part of experiential knowledge, shared information, methods, tools, techniques and so much more.

It is with notion in mind and while revisiting the project after over a year I was thrilled to be part of the first Google Earth Engine Makerspace on the last day of Geo for Good 2021. To round off my Day 1 and Day 2 posts for Geo for Good 21, this is my summary of the makerspace. Special thanks to Emil Cherrington for capturing the snapshots of the talks as they occurred during that time frame which helped me write & summarize the story for larger audiences.

GEE Makerspace discussion in action

eeExtra Project

The main goal of eeExtra project as per the authors is to guarantee a smooth import of these projects in other programming languages by standardizing different methods and enabling the use of JavaScript modules outside the Code Editor. You can find the latest docs on the project here. David Montero Loaiza presented on the topic and highlighted a lot of work being done by Cesar and others to bring these and generalize use of these snippets across languages

The eeExtra Ecosystem

Earth Engine Tips and Tricks

Perhaps one of the best part of twitter feeds is you can keep an idea running like a feed and over time it can grown into something massively powerful and useful to users. With than in mind Keiko Nomura presented on her collection of power GEE tips and tricks. Keiko just released a summary pages with the tips and tricks summarized here

Earth Engine Tips and Tricks Snapshot

EarthEngine.jl: A Julia API for Earth Engine

EarthEngine.jl was presented by Kel Markert focusing on making the API wrapped and functional in Julia apart from the near ubiquitous use using JS and Python wrappers. The work was designed to focus on high speed models and optimization in code writing itself as users explore multiple ways to achieve the same result. You can find more information about the project here

EarthEngine.jl slide snapshot during Makerspace

Open Earth Engine Library (OEEL)

Mathieu Gravey presented on the Open Earth Engine Library (OEEL) talking about commonly ported over JS functions that were modularized and made available for use by anyone. You can find the project github page here

OEEL slide snapshot

Awesome Earth Engine Apps

Google Earth Engine apps came out of Beta at an announcement made during Geo for Good 2021. Since the availability of this features hundreds and thousands of users have created GEE apps to allow users to interact with data and create repeatable representations of use cases. Philipp Gärtner took it upon himself to scour and source about 2000+ of these apps to create the first app repository. You can find his repo here inspired by which I created ee-appshot which automatically creates an Earth Engine app links and their source code and you can read about it here too

Awesome Earth Engine Apps slide snapshot

Interactive Mapping with Geemap

Perhaps one of the largest contribution to extending GEE applications in Python includes the work of Qiusheng Wu who create the geemap python package used by hundreds of people worldwide to work with GEE in jupyterlab environment and to massively extend current capabilities. The project has grown over the years and you can find the latest project here

geemap slide snapshot

Earth Engine Virtual Meetups

Perhaps a large part of bringing community is facilitating conversations, training, workshops, enabling users to build and learn from each other and Sabrina Szeto has been running Earth Engine Virtual meetups for a while with the same idea in mind. This allows for a decentralized way for users to talk to each other and learn in the process. You can find the calendar and the meetup page here

Earth Engine virtual meetups slide snapshot

Awesome GEE community Datasets

The Awesome GEE community Datasets was born out of the need to bridge the divide between access and accessibility to datasets spread across different formats , different setups and webpages. The idea was to build one of the largest community contributed Google Earth Engine catalog and that is what the project has been aiming to do , help curate and make them more available. You can find the catalog page here and the GitHub repo here. At about a years worth of work put in the catalog this was one of the fun ones I got to lead.

awesome-gee-community datasets slide snapshot

Exploring remote sensing fundamentals: A spectral encounter

Valerie Pasquarella, took the art of teaching using GEE apps to the next level by breaking down digestible chunks of remote sensing and creating two apps called spectral encounters for both Landsat and Sentinel-2 datasets. These are popular apps and have allowed for opening the conversation about making teaching and learning are accelerated by accessibility. You can read her medium post here which links to the apps.

A spectral encounter slide snapshots

This is far from an exhaustive list of all those who have built and contributed in some way of the other. I would be remiss if I do not mention the work of so many others who have contributed to the gee community projects including Genna’s work on Google Earth Engine QGIS plugin to Rodrigo’s GEE tools and more.

The Earth Engine community has been building for years now, and as GEE gets over a decade old, the community of users, educators, learners and more to come together and create and make these safe spaces. As the Earth Engine ecosystem evolves I hope the Makerspace events and Community commons shared and held across so many actors remains a valuable asset for all to use.



Samapriya Roy

Remote sensing applications, large scale data processing and management, API applications along with network analysis and geostatistical methods