Reconnaissance Field Tools

This page lists the field tools that will be tested as part of the Golden Guardian exercise on May 30th, 2012. Researching field tools is an ongoing process and additional tools will be continually added to the list. The tables below summarize the supported devices and features for each tool. Click on the name of each tool for a quick description, links to the tool, and demos and tutorials.

View the Volunteer Guide to see Instructions for the day of the exercise.

Supported Devices

Android iOS Web App
EERI Fieldnotes X X X
EERI Photo Upload Tool
EpiCollect X X
FieldNotes LT & Pro X
ODK Collect X
SpotOnResponse X X X
USGS Fieldnotes X X X


Summary of Features

Geolocation Photos Audio Video Form
EERI Fieldnotes X X Buildings: Quick
EERI Photo Upload Tool X X
EpiCollect X X Buildings: Quick
FEMA ROVER X X Buildings: Detailed
FieldNotes LT & Pro X X X (Pro) X (Pro) Free form text box
ODK Collect X X X Buildings: Quick, Detailed
SpotOnResponse X X X X Free form text box
USGS Fieldnotes X Fault Rupture, Liquefaction, Landslide


EERI Fieldnotes

Basic Info: Adaptation of USGS Field notes for engineers. This version allows for photos to be associated with field observations.
How to get it: Website
How to use it: Similar to USGS Fieldnotes

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EERI Photo Upload Tool

Basic Info: Batch upload tool for geotagged photos. Photos can be uploaded with a java tool or through the web map interface. Uploaded photos are displayed on a google map.
How to get it: Java Tool, Web Interface
How to use it: Video Tutorial, Java Tool Tutorial

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Basic Info: provides a web application for the generation of forms and freely hosted project websites (using Google’s AppEngine) for many kinds of mobile data collection projects. Data can be collected using multiple mobile phones running either the Android Operating system or the iPhone (using the EpiCollect mobile app) and all data can be synchronized from the phones and viewed centrally (using Google Maps) via the Project website or directly on the phones.
How to get it: iPhone/iPad App, Android App, Project website
How to use it: Tutorial, Instructions:

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Basic Info: ROVER is open-source software that automates the paper-based screening procedures taught in FEMA 154. Building-specific data are entered into ROVER in the field via smartphones and GPS devices, and are aggregated in a PC-based data server. ROVER includes many productivity-enhancing features, such as automated geolocation, integrated digital photography and sketching capabilities, and automated retrieval of site-specific soil and hazard data from U.S. Geological Survey maps.
How to get it: Website
How to use it: Tutorial

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FieldNotes LT & Pro

Basic Info: A note taking tool for iPhone/iPad to take with you on the road: locate your position using GPS and view it on a satellite map, take notes, collect photographs all in geo-referenced format. Then transmit this information via e-mail as a kmz or text to any destination. No need to connect through iTunes. Makes geo-referenced data sharing and collection a snap for those on the go.
How to get it: FieldNotesPro ($9.99), FieldNotesLT (Free)
How to use it: Demo, More info:

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ODK Collect

Basic Info: ODK Collect is phone-based replacement for your paper forms. It renders a form, survey, or algorithm into prompts that support complex logic, repeating questions, and multiple languages. Data types include text, location, photos, video, audio, and barcodes. Go to to find out more.
How to get it: Android App, Project Website
How to use it: Tutorial, User Guide

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Basic Info: SpotOnResponse™ is a web application that enables two-way data communication about incident information among the associated emergency response community. Combined with XchangeCore™, the national information sharing middleware sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security, Directorate of Science and Technology, SpotOnResponse increases awareness of on-going events and creates two-way mobile data communication for responders.
How to get it: Website
How to use it: Tutorial, User’s Guide

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USGS Fieldnotes

Basic Info: HTML5 web application for scientists to record geologic features in the field.
How to get it:
How to use it: Tutorial

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