Data, data, data. There's loads of it out there and more coming your
way as governments open their statistics vaults around the world.
First the US with data.gov, then Australia and New Zealand followed
suit. Now it's the UK's turn with data.gov.uk.
And that's in addition to the cities and US states that have made
government data available too: London launched very recently - you can
get the full set of links for government data sites around the world
Ever since the government appointed Sir Tim Berners-Lee as its open
data Czar (working with Prof Nigel Shadbolt from Southampton
University) it was obvious the issue was going to be big for the
government, but what does it mean for you?
You now have tens of sites around the world providing you access, but
how do you find them?
Well, this is now the place. To coincide with the launch of
data.gov.uk, we have created the ultimate gateway to world government
At World Government Data you can:
• Search government data sites from the UK, USA, Australia, New
Zealand and London (this comes under United Kingdom, if you want to
browse) in one place and download the data (more sites to come)
• Help us find the best dataset by ranking them
• Collect similar datasets together from around the world
• Browse all datasets by each country
It's all been put together with the help of developer Ben Firshman and
is the culmination of our year-long project to make data widely
available to everyone.
And, even better, we have an API available. Even though all of these
government data sites have enormous quantities of data, they are not
in the same formats. What we have done is put them into a unified
form, meaning developers have the opportunity to write applications
that compare data between different countries. If you want the data in
Atom or JSON just change the "/search" to "/search.atom" or
"/search.json" in the url. There will be full documentation on this
soon. Watch this space.
The whole project is only going to increase in size and scope. As Ben
Fry has said: "This is only going one way: there is no trend towards
Steven Clift - http://stevenclift.com
Executive Director - http://E-Democracy.Org
Follow me - http://twitter.com/democracy
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