Open Data

The long and heated debates on whether users should pay for geodata produced by public institutes are approaching deadlock now that many countries and (supra)national leaders are embracing the view that governmental data should be freely available to all. “I am a big supporter of open data which is widely available and accessible, for free and with no restrictions at all associated with its re-use,” stated European Commissioner Neelie Kroes in our May 2012 issue. The vision underpinning offering data to everyone free of fees, copyright claims or permits is that facts, like air and sunlight, are owned by no... (read more)
2012-06-06 02:56:56

Open Data

  The open data virus is clearly spreading throughout the world. In Europe, EU Commissioner Kroes published new measures to stimulate the reuse of public sector data at the end of November 2011. Open data portals are increasingly filled with public data, often including public sector geographic data. Recently, the Dutch Minister of Infrastructure and Environment announced that by 1st January 2015 all of this ministry's data, including many geographic data sets, will be made available in line with an open data policy. As of 1st January 2012, this policy already applies to the Dutch topographic data set 1:10,000.  ... (read more)
2012-01-31 03:32:14

Open Data and Quality

For decades, quality as an essential dimension in using geodata has been neglected by many GIS users. As a result of open data and the tendency to combine geodata from a wide diversity of sources, one now faces the dilemma of discrepancies arising between one dataset and another. In the meantime, many people have burned their fingers and suddenly there it is: after decades of disregard, the quality issue is now appearing high on the agenda of GIS users. Few of them grasp that the subject is not only key, but also complex. To illustrate the scale of the quality... (read more)
2014-10-24 10:07:22

Open Data Opportunities

The Next Generation of Location-Based Services
The advent of web technologies and the promotion of data sharing practices have fostered open data initiatives. The main motivation of governments in sharing data with the public is to stimulate economic growth by enabling the creation of new products. One of the areas that could benefit from open data initiatives is that of location-based services (LBS). If access to relevant data sources is granted, next-generation LBS could do much more than ‘just’ proposing an itinerary from A to B, or finding the nearest hotel. However, challenges must be addressed before open data initiatives can result in expected benefits. Whether... (read more)
2013-10-28 02:20:43

Open Data Masterclasses

Gaining a greater understanding of open data, and the tools and techniques to use open datasets, is being facilitated through a series of free masterclasses hosted by Ordnance Survey, UK. The masterclasses, run by Ordnance Survey’s GeoVation initiative and supported by Horizon Digital Economy Research, are aimed at individuals, developers, community groups, social entrepreneurs, commercial and government organisations. Participants stand to benefit from a greater understanding of the opportunities around open data, as well as being provided with the tools and techniques needed to use and analyse a range of open datasets relevant to them. The open data masterclasses will... (read more)
2012-03-07 04:27:50

EuroGeographics Extends Open Data Coverage

More than 1,500 users have downloaded pan-European data from EuroGeographics since its 1:1 million scale topographical database, EuroGlobalMap, was released as open data. A survey examining how it is being used revealed a wide range of applications including air traffic analysis, emergency services accessibility studies, mobile mapping and demographic and socio-economic analysis. EuroGlobalMap has also helped to create archaeological distribution maps and energy and environment models, and been well received by those working in the education sector. EuroGeographics wants as many people as possible to use its open data as a first step in discovering the wider benefits of pan-European... (read more)
2014-05-05 08:30:00

Open Data Boosts Heating Grid

The Dutch Municipality of Zaanstad asked energy network operator Alliander to help it investigate the opportunity for an innovative and open heating grid. The municipality specifically requested that Alliander would not consider the council’s wishes alone, but instead would use the interests of all stakeholders as its starting point. Alliander knew from experience that such negotiations could be a lengthy process so it decided to take a different approach in Zaanstad; it enlisted the help of Tygron, a Delft-based start-up specialised in 3D software for urban planning with 20 employees. Tygron and Alliander created a realistic digital environment in which... (read more)
2015-09-15 02:12:57

Major Step in US Open Data Policy

US President Barack Obama has signed an Executive Order to make government-held data more accessible to the public, declaring that information is a valuable resource and strategic asset for the United States. The Memorandum establishes a framework to help institutionalise the principles of effective information management at each stage of the information's life cycle to promote interoperability and openness. The Executive Order is the latest in a series of actions - started in 2009 - in support of increasing access to and transparency of government information. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) immediately followed with a Memorandum to the... (read more)
2013-05-13 04:19:50

SilverStripe Builds Geospatial Open Data Solution

Wellington-based (New Zealand) web development company SilverStripe has recently launched a new geospatial-based website for the New Zealand Geospatial Office (NZGO). NZGO is a controlling body within Land Information New Zealand (LINZ). The site will be the main online presence for discovering New Zealand geospatial data and enables users to explore large amounts of geographical data from several databases.   This application enables researchers, for example, to access fundamental climate and environmental information. Making this information publicly discoverable in a reusable way will enable researchers to bring datasets together and draw new conclusions.   SilverStripe developed the application to provide... (read more)
2011-09-14 09:46:37

New Open Data at Intergeo 2011

The OpenStreetMap (OSM) project is due to attract heightened interest at Intergeo, which will be held in Nuremberg, Germany, from 27th to 29th September 2011, and is the topic of the first-ever Intergeo BarCamp. The number of OSM members currently stands at 389,302 and rising. The importance of the global OpenStreetMap (OSM) community is also growing steadily. The broad-based and well-balanced conference programme includes many other highlights.   Free geodata played an invaluable role in the wake of the earthquake in Haiti in 2010. By providing a clear picture of the devastation, this information supported the work of the emergency... (read more)
2011-05-04 09:55:17
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