“We are completely redesigning the visual look and feel of the site as well as migrating it to a new software framework called CKAN. It’s an open data catalog and search software developed by the Open Knowledge Foundation in the UK,” said Robert Cheetham, founder and president of Azavea. “It’s available under an open source license and so we’ll be adapting that for Open Data Philly.”
OpenDataPhilly.org was created in 2011 and provides a hub for publishing and accessing open data by the City government as well as other organizations, universities and businesses in the region.
Before Azavea releases the new Open Data Philly website, it is hosting an OpenDataPhilly Visualization Contest. The contest calls on designers, data scientists, developers and anyone who enjoys exploring and visualizing open data to create static or interactive visualization that include maps, infographics, charts or any other creative visualization. The visualizations that represent the most creative and visually impactful uses of Philadelphia’s Open data will be featured on the new website, and up to ten winners will also receive Amazon gift cards.
“The Open Data Visualization Contest is aimed at helping to assemble a group of examples of how open data is being used in constructive ways, both inside and outside the city,” Cheetham said. “Part of why we want to do that is to provide fresh, visual images for the relaunch of the website.”
He added that the contest is also being used as a way to remind the community that it has a stake in open data.
“We want to re-engage a group of stakeholders that are interested in seeing the city and other locations’ open data policies succeed,” Cheetham said.
In addition, the Office of Innovation and Technology has recently released it’s Open Data Strategic Plan. The plan states that since Mayor Nutter established an open data policy in 2012, over 100 datasets have been released, including crime incidents, contracts for professional services, licenses and violations and property assessments.
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The plan calls for the next phase of the program to change in the following ways:
- Renewing the focus on the general public as the ultimate customer.
- Shifting open data to be less about technology and more about departments making open data policy decisions.
- Focusing on a broader data management strategy that empowers departments to share data internally as well as with the public.
View the entire strategic plan at http://cityofphiladelphia.github.io/slash-data/phl_opendata_plan.pdf
Learn more about the Open Data Visualization Contest and submit entries at https://screendoor.dobt.co/azavea/opendataphilly-visualization-contest
Images via City of Philadelphia and OpenDataPhilly-30-
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