Open Knowledge Foundation Newsletter No. 14
OPEN KNOWLEDGE FOUNDATION NEWSLETTER NO. 14
- Mapping open government data around the world
- Launch of the Panton Principles for open data in science
- Where Does My Money Go? The hunt for data
- Release of Datapkg 5
- Interested in open data for international development?
- New features in CKAN!
- Update on Open Shakespeare: annotations and word of the day
- New working group on open data in archaeology
- Draft of new attribution license for data
- Other news in brief
- Thanks to our volunteers!
- Support the Open Knowledge Foundation
- Further information
To support the OKF see: http://www.okfn.org/support
MAPPING OPEN GOVERNMENT DATA AROUND THE WORLD
The Open Knowledge Foundation and Access Info are currently seeking information on open government data initiatives around the world, as part of a scoping paper supported by the Open Society Institute:
With major announcements from the UK and and the US in the past few months, and numerous open government data catalogues popping up around the world, there is a lot going on in the world of open government data at the moment. Hence we are putting out an open call for information about open government data around the world – including citizen-driven initiatives, official government polices and projects, mash up competitions, data sources and innovative reuses of open government data:
If you’d like to keep in touch with what we’re doing, or join the conversation, you can subscribe to our open government data mailing list
LAUNCH OF THE PANTON PRINCIPLES
We’re delighted to announce the Panton Principles for Open Data in Science were launched on February 19th.
The principles themselves state that legal status of scientific datasets should be made explicit and that content licenses are not appropriate for data. They strongly discourage non-commercial licenses and strongly encourage dedication to the public domain. You can endorse the principles at:
The first draft of Panton Principles was written in July 2009 by Peter Murray-Rust, Cameron Neylon, Rufus Pollock and John Wilbanks at the Panton Arms on Panton Street in Cambridge, UK, just down from the Chemistry Faculty where Peter works. They were then refined with the help of the members of the Open Knowledge Foundation Working Group on Open Data in Science.
We’d greatly appreciate any help in disseminating the principles – including blogging, microblogging and forwarding to relevant people!
WHERE DOES MY MONEY GO? THE HUNT FOR DATA
As you may have seen the prototype of our ‘Where Does My Money Go?’ project was launched in December. We’ve had an excellent response to the launch – including quite a bit of press coverage in the UK and across the world – such as in the Guardian, BBC News, and the Telegraph. The prototype can be viewed at:
The Open Knowledge Foundation’s Lisa Evans has been hard at work acquiring and cleaning up more detailed data for the next stage of the project’s development – including via FOI requests, meetings with HM Treasury and converting existing material into more reusable formats.
If you would like to join the hunt and contribute to the project, we’d love to hear from you! You can drop Lisa and the team an email at wdmmg at okfn dot org.
RELEASE OF DATAPKG 0.5
Part of our long term vision for the ecosysem of open data is one in which we can work with large datasets in increasingly automated ways. Hence we are pleased to announce the release of v.0.5 of Datapkg, a user tool for distributing, discovering and installing data (and content). This is a key part of making data sharing automatable.
By packaging the data its metadata becomes standardised and can be placed within a repository, such as CKAN, whereby it becomes significantly easier to find, retrieve and use: as an end-user tool it allows automated (command-line or scripted) discovery, installation and sharing of data “packages” either standalone or via interaction with a registry like CKAN.
For further information, and documentation on Datapkg 0.5 see:
OPENING UP INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT DATA
We’re soliciting another round of feedback for the draft of a working paper on opening up data related to international development. The report covers how to legally and technically open up aid data, as well as recommendations for how to make aid data easier to find and reuse. It now has a dedicated website at:
We’re actively soliciting for comments on the paper. In particular there’s a list of questions we’re looking for input on.
CKAN 0.11 Released
The release of version 0.11 of the CKAN software, our open source registry of open data used in ckan.net and data.gov.uk is our biggest release so far, with lots of new features and improvements. This release also saw a major new production deployment with the CKAN software, powering data.gov.uk – which had its public launch on January 21st.
We’re very proud that data.gov.uk is using CKAN, our open source registry of open data, to list official UK government datasets (as we announced in October) and we’ve been working closely with the Cabinet Office team to get this out the door. Consequently, over 2500 datasets have now been released via the site!
Take a look at some of the datasets and access CKAN at:
OPEN SHAKESPEARE ANNOTATIONS AND WORD OF THE DAY FEATURES
OKF’s Open Shakespeare project team members have been hard at work recently. The Open Shakespeare website is part of the The Open Shakespeare package – a set of materials and tools for exploring Shakespeare’s life and works in more creative, interesting, and most importantly, open ways.
We’re delighted to announce that two new features are now live on the site. These include the annotations tool, which provides users with the ability to annotate specific text within individual plays. For an example of how this works, see:
We’re very excited about this development, as it opens us a whole new world of collaboration in the use of Shakespeare’s works and enables in-depth information sharing within the texts themselves.
Additionally, the ‘word of the day’ feature is now live and operational on Open Shakespeare. You can see it in action on the home page or indeed, the direct link to our current Word of the Day, ‘baker’.
There are, of course, plenty of improvements to each feature that we’ll continue to work on behind the scenes, but please do feel free to start annotating away if you’ve a burning addition to make! Select a text to annotate here.
WORKING GROUP ON OPEN DATA IN ARCHAEOLOGY
To better understand archaeological research processes and to encourage others to open up archaeological knowledge, a few weeks ago we started a new Open Knowledge Foundation Working Group on Open Data in Archaeology.
We’ve also started a group on CKAN, the Open Knowledge Foundation’s registry of open data.
If you’d like to get involved with any of this, we encourage you to join our open-archaeology mailing list and introduce yourself.
Stefano Costa from the University of Siena, the Working Group Coordinator, recently wrote about the importance of ‘opening up’ archaeology on the OKF blog.
DRAFT OF OPEN DATA COMMONS ATTRIBUTION LICENSE
Early January 2010 saw the release of an Open Data Commons draft of the new attribution license, specifically aimed at data and databases. We would warmly welcome feedback on the new draft, and all and any help in circulating it to relevant parties (including legal experts, prospective users and so on)! The draft is available here.
A commentable version of the text is available at:
Meanwhile, for anyone who is interested, we’ve recently started a CKAN group for public finance data packages:
There are 26 packages listed so far, and as well as the group we’ve started a ‘reading list’ for key official documents and secondary sources on UK Government finance on the OKF wiki.
OTHER NEWS IN BRIEF
Other news items in brief from the open knowledge community…
David Jones, curator of the CKAN climate data group, has posted a guide to climate data on the OKF blog
The Open Literature discussion list has been launched to discuss open shakespeare, open milton and “open literature” in general
OKCon 2010 is coming! The date for your diary is 24th April and as usual it will take place in central London. We look forward to seeing you there
Alongside the CKAN group for collecting public finance data, we’ve also launched a Where Does My Money Go discussion list
Material from the latest workshop of COMMUNIA, the EU thematic network for the Digital Public Domain, is available here
Slides from the talk “CKAN: apt-get for the Debian of Data”, at the 26th Chaos Computer Congress in January are available here
Long-term data interoperability presentation available, given by Puneet Kishor
Tactical Technology Collective’s latest project, 10 tactics for turning information into action & how to use complex data
The Finnish Ministry of Transportation and Communications has commissioned a Finnish guidebook about open government data
If you have an item of news that you’d like us to include in the next newsletter, please let us know!
THANKS TO OKF VOLUNTEERS!
As usual, a big thank you to our volunteers and to our extended virtual community for all of their valuable input!
If you would like to know more about what we are up to, please take a look at our active projects page.
If you are interested in participating in any of the OKF’s projects, please see our participate page, or join the OKF discuss list.
For further news and comments, see our blog:
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The Open Knowledge Foundation is a not-for-profit organization. It is incorporated in the United Kingdom as a company limited by guarantee with company number 5133759. The registered office is 37 Panton Street, Cambridge, CB2 1HL, UK.