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2 responses to What features should be included in a catalogue of open government data?

  1. Great post. Agree on all points. One additional suggestion is to allow users to browse the catalog of data sets via multiple facets of metadata. For example, users should be able to sort and filter lists of available data by country, topic, subtopic, region, source, etc, etc. And should be able to filter by more than one facet. A couple of unrelated examples of this include:

    http://resource.smartdesktop.org/rescon/

    and

    http://tinyurl.com/3y9zd8

    As the registry grows, this will allow users to find stuff more easily.

  2. Great list. Very helpful.

    A couple of other guidelines I’m trying to follow in my catalog…

    Make sure segmented file sets are actually grouped together. I should be able to see that I can put Northwest financials 2008 and Northwest financials 2009 together. Stuff like this is all over data.gov

    Provide direct links to supporting datasets and shared segments. If a supporting dataset is used by more than one set like say… a list of postal codes make it a separate entity and link each dataset to it so users can find compatible datasets.

    Provide direct download links to all files. Avoid links to pages that lead you to files or force you to use a query tool to find the data.

    If you’re actually hosting data:

    Use platform independent archive types. For instance no self extracting exes.

    Provide at least small sets like csv uncompressed or just gzipped by the web server so they can be piped directly to other web services like google docs without having to download, extract, push.

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