This article covers the typical annual monitoring process using the 2021 version of the Landscape Mobile App ("Landscape Mobile 3"). Prior to monitoring, staff will need to set up the proper forms and final report templates, and ensure that proper mapping and documents have been made available. This article covers the steps necessary to setting up your monitoring workflow for the first time. For a video tutorial geared towards volunteers, click here.
Step 1: Download the site for offline use
It's always a good idea to download the Stewardship Site for offline use before you head out to monitor a property. Doing so downloads any documents you've toggled for availability, and any map data you'll need to be able to use the app without cell signal.
While you have access to wifi, you'll need to do the following:
- Download the app (search for "Landscape Mobile 3" in the App or Play store).
- Log in with your username and password. The app works best if each user has access to their own unique user name and password, as it will automatically enter that individual as the monitor when a site visit is started.
After you've downloaded the app and logged in, you can start to prepare the visit. You can download as many Stewardship Sites as you need to in preparation for your visit:
- Find the Stewardship Site by using the search bar at the top of the screen, or by navigating to the site with the map. Note that you can tap 'Show Team Sites' to display a list of the Stewardship Sites to which you belong as a team member or team lead. When the map pans to the correct site, tap on it.
- Tap 'Prepare Offline' in the window that opens. Confirm that you want to download the site by selecting 'Yes', then tap 'OK'.
- The cloud icon now displays the status of your downloads. Tap it to review the process. Once it's done, you're ready to go! The number in the green circle shows how many sites you've downloaded.
Step 2: Review past visit information
- If there is any previous site visit geography data associated with the Stewardship Site, it will appear as pill-shaped buttons above the Stewardship Site name. The app will only display the geography for the past 3 'Completed' Site Visits, as well as any pending visits. Toggle these buttons on and off by tapping on them. The photo points and tracks of previous visits will be turned on and off. You can tap on photo points to see the photos that were taken, and tap on the photos themselves to see captions.
- Tap 'Site Details' to see details associated with the Stewardship Site, including directions, access instructions, contacts and their associated contact information, documents that have been made available to the app, and issues.
- Tap on the layers button to see the layers that you have access to. Turn these layers on and off to review them, or leave them on if you'd like to have the context while you're performing your site visit. Note that these layers only display after you've selected the property.
Step 3: Start and perform a new site visit
- Select 'Site Visits' and where it says 'Or, create a new site visit: ', choose 'Select a Visit Type'. Pick 'Annual Monitoring' (or its equivalent). This not only categorizes the site visit properly, but also tells Landscape which form to use. Click 'OK'
- You're brought into a site visit record, where you can fill out site visit details, start and stop tracking and the time of your visit, and fill out the site visit form. Select 'Start Visit', and choose 'Yes' when it asks you if you'd like to reset the start time of the visit. The app is now tracking your location.
- Typically, you'll want to perform most of the site visit from the map screen, and only return to the site visit screen when you want to fill out the form and summary at the end of the visit. Return to the map by clicking on the back arrow in the upper left hand corner of the screen.
- Your active visits (you can have more than one at a time) now appear as the trail icon with the yellow badge. You can return to the site visit details screen at any time by clicking this icon.
Important Note: When you add a photo to a map, two distinct objects are created: 1) A photopoint 2) The photo(s). A photopoint is just a point on a map that can have its own description and information. This photopoint can contain one or more photos, which can also have their own descriptions. When you click the camera button and take a photo, it will automatically create a photopoint at that location to contain the photo information.
- From the map screen, you can navigate the stewardship site, add photopoints and photos, and add custom geography. Most often, you'll just want to add a photopoint and accompanying photo. Tap the camera icon to create a photopoint and take a photo. The camera will open.
- By default, your photopoint and the accompanying photo are numbered automatically. 'GPS' is the GPS accuracy of your device. The heading is displayed below the GPS information. If either of these is inaccurate, you'll need to consult documentation for your particular device to see how they can be improved.
- The arrow on the white button indicates whether you are in landscape or portrait mode. Click on the white button to take a photo.
- It will display the photo you just took. Add a description to the photo by selecting 'Describe'. 'Discard' discards the photo so you can take another one, and 'Keep' saves the photo when you're done.
- When you're done taking photos, select 'Close' to return to the map.
- If you do not select 'Close' and go back to the map before you move locations and take another photo, Landscape will automatically place the photo within the previous photopoint. You can override this by selecting 'New Point' before you take the photo, or by returning to the map after you take a photo.
|Tip: To conserve battery, turn off your device display when not in use. The app will continue to track your location, even when the screen isn't on.|
Site visits are ways of capturing the state of a property at a single moment in time, and are not ideal for tracking items which need to be followed up on for that reason. Ie. you don't have the ability to mark an issue you discover as 'resolved' from within a site visit record. If you see something that you think will require staff follow-up, you may want to add an Issue in addition to noting it in your monitoring report. This may not be a 'Violation', but could simply be something you think that your organization will want to track, such as a pending property transfer, or a question that the landowner had about the terms of an easement. Check with your organization to see what protocol they follow for tracking issues.
Issues can be added from the 'Site Details' screen below documents and contacts, or from the Site Visit Details screen. From either location, click 'Add Issue' to enter information for that issue. You only have the ability to add text data for an issue -- geography and photos can be added later from the browser version of the website.
Step 4: Finishing the site visit and uploading the data
- When you are done with your visit, navigate back to the Site Visit Details page by clicking on the active visits badge (with the yellow number).
- Click 'Stop Visit'. This will turn off location tracking and will update the end time of your visit.
- Fill out the form information and other fields as necessary.
- When you return to wifi, open the app and tap the sync button, then click 'sync now'. It will upload all of the site visit data, including photos, to their correct record in Landscape. If you're curious about the synchronization status, you can click the sync button to check when the last sync occurred and get more details. If there are any errors in the synchronization process, clicking the sync button will tell you.
- If you took a lot of photos on your visit(s), this process can take a while. Make sure not to close or 'background' the app while this synchronization is taking place. If your device goes to sleep during the synchronization process, you will want to open the app again and check the sync status by tapping the sync button.
The visit will then be uploaded to the relevant stewardship site (in the 'Work' tab) property record (under 'Assets'). From the site visit record you can update the form responses, change the photo captions, and generate and save the final monitoring report.