Tag Archives: Open Data Camp

What makes for a good API?

One of the first questions to come up on day two of Open Data Camp was “what is an API?” One of the last issues to be discussed was “what makes a good API?”

 

Participants were asked for examples of application programming interfaces that they actually liked. The official postcode release site got a thumbs up: “It was really clear how to use it and what I’d get, and I can trust that the data will come back in the same way each time.”

Continue reading What makes for a good API?

A tale of two datasets

Controversially, Gavin Freeguard, head of data and transparency at the Institute for Government, was allowed a PowerPoint presentation at Open Data Camp 4. However, it was in a good cause.

 

His slides enabled him to give some concrete examples of the data in the Whitehall Monitoring Project, which he runs. The project monitors the shape and size of government, the morale of civil servants, and other factors.

Continue reading A tale of two datasets

What is data, open data… and what on earth is an API?

Day two of Open Data Camp in Cardiff opened with another session on the basics. What is open data, who can use it and what is it useful for?

More open data for newbies

Also, going back a step: “What is data?” Session participants suggested that while the public or ‘newbies’ might equate data with statistics, ‘data’ was much broader than that. It might be the raw data – or numbers – on which the stats were based. But it might also be text, or photographs.

Continue reading What is data, open data… and what on earth is an API?

Learning to love Linked Data

Linked data has been a topic of discussion at successive Open Data Camps. So at Open Data Camp 4 in Cardiff, Jen Williams of Networked Planet whipped through the basics.

Linked Data at Open Data Camp

“When people talk about linked data they are talking about putting it into a statement,” she said. “So in a normal spreadsheet, you have a lot of columns… with linked data you start with an identifier and then go to the column header, the ‘known as’, and then you go to the value. Continue reading Learning to love Linked Data

Do we need portals for open data?

After a quick sandwich lunch, people attending the Open Data Camp in Cardiff were challenged to a debate. Is a single point of access, aka a portal, the best way to open up access to data sources?

 

Speaking for the debate was Giuseppe Sollazzo, who co-authored a report on the NHS and open data. “One of the things we have discovered is that there is a recommendation for a single point of access. I am not necessarily a fan of a portal, but at this point we have no other option. Continue reading Do we need portals for open data?

What open data standards do we need?

Terence Eden from the Government Data Service had one of the most reacted-to pitches at Open Data Camp 4. Surely, he suggested to the more than 100 attendees packed into Cardiff’s Pierhead, data should always be released as pdf?

Open Data Standards

Of course, this was a joke. And at the session on ‘what open data standards do we need’ he said he had insisted that government departments released data in open document format.

This wasn’t openness for openness sake, he added. It was because he didn’t think it was reasonable for open data users to be expected to buy licenses for expensive, proprietary database and software projects where good, open and free alternatives existed.

Continue reading What open data standards do we need?

Open data ecosystems

The aim of the session was to map some open data ecosystems – because, as session leader Leigh Dodds of Bath:Hacked put it:

“We are often struggling to work out where the value is coming from.”

He added: “We often try to identify users and publish case studies, but there are lots more people working in open data than just publishers and users, so we want to try and capture some of these. We want to test out some roles, and find out how they fit together in a value analysis.”

Dodds had come up with a list of potential roles, which he was keen for the session to test out. These are available at bit.ly/odcamp-mapping: along with a sample map of Bath:Hacked’s own ecosystem.

Continue reading Open data ecosystems

Open Data Camp with a Welsh flavour

This post was first published on the Epimorphics blog.

Blwyddyn Newydd Dda!

Open Data Camp continues to grow and and build a diverse open data community. I’m delighted that just before St. David’s Day it is visiting the Pierhead in Cardiff….

Image: “The Pierhead” by: Alex Coley: CC BY 2.0 https://flic.kr/p/d2Fuef  

Open Data Camp continues to grow and and build a diverse open data community. I’m delighted that just before St. David’s Day it is visiting the Pierhead in Cardiff.  Cardiff was my home for many years and is a place I have huge affection for.  More importantly, this is a great opportunity for the open data community to discuss and highlight some of the Welsh context of Open Data.

There are many public bodies in Wales doing great things with Open Data. The Welsh Government is growing their open data resources and implementing their open data plan. The ODI Node: Cardiff continues to grow, connect and equip people across Wales to innovate with data. It would be great for all of us to be able to add some data stories to the developing community from across Wales.

We at Epimorphics are looking forward to what has become great forum for discussion, hearing great data stories and sharing challenges. We will be attending again and are proud to be sponsoring the event.

We’d love to see you there but as a reminder tickets are going fast. The next batch of tickets will be released on Sunday 8th Jan, see here for more details.  

Byddwn yn eich gweld yn fuan.

 

Open Data Camp 4 – festive update

This is a quick post to update you on preparations for Open Data Camp 4, and to wish you all a Merry Christmas.

Preparations underway

So far, we’ve released two batches of tickets, and they’ve been snapped-up really fast.

49 tickets have been issued so far, and there are another 71 remaining.

These will also be released in batches on the following dates:

  • Sunday 8th January at 8pm
  • Friday 13th January 2017 at 4pm
  • Thursday 19th January at 12noon

Who’s coming?

As you probably already know, Open Data Camp is free to attend, and is open to everyone. We often get asked who attends Open Data Camp. We obviously can’t divulge any personal information, and some people choose not to volunteer any additional information about themselves, but we can share a summary.

Sector theme

We suggested some sector themes for attendees, and those who responded selected the following themes:

Sector theme Number
Data Infrastructure 13
Open Cities (or Smart Cities) 13
Data as Culture 11
Agriculture and Nutrition 4
Global Development 2

Job titles

There’s a really wide range of job titles amongst attendees who chose to tell us their title, with students, researchers, policy people, founders, directors, CEOs, analysts, developers and technicians, and many more besides.

We’re starting to get all Christmassy, so here it is as a picture (click to see full size).

Organisations

Here are some of the organisations attendees identify with. With three more ticket releases to go, there will be lots more yet to come.

Diversity

At the moment, attendees are approximately ⅓ female and ⅔ male, which is remarkably similar to all three previous events. There are still several opportunities through the forthcoming ticket releases on Jan 8th, 13th and 19th to attract a diverse range of attendees. The Open Data Camp organising team currently comprises 10 men and 6 women, and for the previous Camp, we adopted a Code of Conduct to ensure that we continue to have an enjoyable event for everyone.

Practicalities and logistics

If you’ve managed to grab a ticket, you may have some questions about how to get to the venue, and where to stay. Take a look at the Venue and Accommodation page on the web site. We’ll be keeping it updated, and posting more information as we get it. If you’re stuck, let us know at @ODCamp on Twitter, or through the contact page on the web site, and we’ll try to help. We’d also welcome any other suggestions on good (and cheap!) places to stay, or any tips on local hostelries.

That’s it for now

Merry Christmas!

Picture credits

Word clouds thanks to Tagul