This year’s Open Data Day and International Open Data Hackathon will take place on March 5, 2016.
What is ‘open data,’ you ask?
Open data is just that – open. It is copyright- and restriction-free data made available to all. Open data may come from government agencies, scientists and researchers, businesses, libraries, archives, or museums. Regardless of origin, all open data should have the following in common (from the California Open Data Handbook):
- It should be technically open: information must be available in a machine readable format.
- It should be legally open: information should be available for commercial and non-commercial use without restrictions.
In addition to being available in a machine readable format, open data should be available in a format pertinent and useful to its intended audience: bulk bins or downloads for academics, within an API for programmers, and searchable and usable online for the average citizen. Open data may take the form of government information (open government), scientific data (open science), economic data (open spending), or cultural, historical, and heritage information (open galleries, libraries, archives, and museums)
Why should I care?
Open Data is vital to a free and open society. Benefits of open data include: better policy assessment, more efficient government, more insights into programs and initiatives, more citizen participation, and benefits to businesses and organizations that use open data.
How can I learn more?
To learn more about open data and how you can contribute to the movement, check out these resources: