Tag Archives: opendata

Open Data Camp #7: London, 2-3 November

In the past few years, the Open Data Camp charabanc has travelled from Winchester to Manchester, from Bristol to Cardiff, and from Belfast to Aberdeen. We’ve always made a point of being as inclusive as possible and giving the wider Open Data communities a way to coalesce in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, and Scotland. We have avoided London as “everything happens there already”.

It’s time to visit the capital

But we felt it was time to bring the charabanc to the capital. We are very happy to announce that the seventh Open Data Camp will be held in at the Geovation Hub in London, on 2-3 November 2019.

Why London now? Logistics are obviously a factor, with many in the organising team possibly busy around Whitehall for a certain other event in October. However, hosting a camp in London also resonated with many people and organisations in our wider network. Many things in the data space have been happening in London and we don’t want to ignore them. For example, there is ongoing work in London, where the National Data Strategy and Data Policy teams are based, while the ODI is running a series of great initiatives from their HQ in London. But we also know that mySociety is running its TICTeC Local conference on 1 November, an event we strongly recommend to the Open Data folks because of a huge overlap of interests and intent with the Civic Tech community it attracts.

We do hope that this will keep the diversity of angles and participants strong.

A call for sponsors and a commitment to transparency

Running Open Data Camp is not free. While the organising team is fully formed of volunteers who offer their time for free, and Ordnance Survey are offering the venue at no charge, we always offer to pay for the extra cleaning , and we want to be able to offer good quality coffee to the attendees, potentially catering, a few drinks at the pub, and take some inclusion action. These things cost money.

Sponsor packages start at just £500, and all details are on this web page. We appreciate both small contributions from people and small companies in our community, and larger donations from larger entities. If you are interested in becoming a sponsor then please contact us via the online form or email your query to ODcampuk@gmail.com or via twitter @ODcamp (but you can also contact @drsiant or @puntofisso directly).

At each camp, the surplus goes to the wider UK Gov Camp community. We are fully committed to transparency, and we’ll offer a full account of income and spending at the end of the camp.

Tickets

Open Data Camp is a two-day event, which gives us a great chance to cover loads of open data topics together.

Sometimes people can’t make both days but, with our regular ticketing arrangements, that means we’ve included them in the headcount even though someone else might have been able to attend instead. So we’re trying something new this time: we will issue three types of tickets:

  • tickets for both days
  • Saturday-only tickets
  • Sunday-only tickets

If you can make both days, please take a 2 day ticket. If you can only make one day, please take a Saturday-only or Sunday-only ticket. This should mean that more people can attend because we won’t have vacant spots. We’ll be reviewing the take-up of these tickets as we release batches so we can adjust the proportions to match demands. Please let us know what you think.

The first ticket batch will be released at 12 noon on Wednesday 31 July on our Eventbrite page.

Open data to tackle loneliness

The government recently published a loneliness strategy, asking how support could be provided for people in “society as it is now”. In other words, in a society in which people travel further for work, but shop online and make use of social media.

How could open data support its aims? What data would be useful, where would we find it, and is just sharing that data enough?

Continue reading Open data to tackle loneliness

Are Open Data businesses viable?

Is just repackaging and selling open data viable? Or should businesses be more sophisticated, aggregating and adding valuable insights to the data?

 

Some data sets are switching from OGL to restricted licences – like the ratings list. That has stopped some uncomfortable commercial uses – but killed some academic uses as well. The OS polygon data has been problematic because the co-ordinates can’t be republished. That’s been tightened up in a way that makes them completely useful commercially, because of wording that encapsulates all “benefitting” from the data.

Continue reading Are Open Data businesses viable?

Open Data: the policy problem

Open Data: the policy problem

Owen Boswarva

There used to be a strategy board and an open data user group, and many other groups steering open data at the policy level. But most of these have now gone away. The one that seems to have survived in the Data Steering Group – but that has a wide range of interests – and we don’t know how interested they are in open data. Other groups seem to have evaporated. None of them have met since 2013/14.

Some sector boards still seem to be in effect. Should these surviving groups be steered from inside or outside government? There are some clearly missing. There’s a good pool of practitioners – but how do people outside the community find out about open data now? And how do we push for more release?

Continue reading Open Data: the policy problem

Open Data from space

ODCamp Day One_5

WARNING – liveblogging. Prone to error, inaccuracy and howling affronts to grammar and syntax. Posts will be improved over the next 48 hours

There’s increasing amounts of data available from remote sensing – satellite, aerial – and more existing data sets are being opened up. Some of it is about land covers, some about surface elevations and some about pollution modelling.

But the data is challenging. There’s a lot of it, and it often requires several steps to get to the information you actually want. You have to identify the area you want – and draw out the data you want.

Continue reading Open Data from space

How do we persuade businesses to release open data?

WARNING – liveblogging. Prone to error, inaccuracy and howling affronts to grammar and syntax. Posts will be improved over the next 48 hours

Opening up corporate data

Google Docs notes for this session

The Food Standards Agency is working hard to open up its data. But how do they encourage others in the food chain to open up business data? There’s some clear value in doing that.

Is that value also there in other sectors? And how do we persuade business to open up their data?

Continue reading How do we persuade businesses to release open data?

How to map everything – and how to share it

WARNING – liveblogging. Prone to error, inaccuracy and howling affronts to grammar and syntax. Posts will be improved over the next 48 hours

Map Everything_1

Google Docs notes for this session

(Alistair Rae introduced the ideas for this session in a blog post: How to map everything (but you definitely shouldn’t)

The age of open data has created an George Mallory approach to geo data: why did you create it? Because it’s there. Alistair has created loads of maps just because he could. But “why?” needs to be asked more.

Continue reading How to map everything – and how to share it

Datopolis: the board game for open data

Datopolis - captured

Google Docs notes for this session

Datopolis is a board game, created by Jeni Tennison and Ellen Broad from the Open Data Institute. At the outset of the session, Ellen explained that the game has been in development for around 12 months, and is still being prototyped.

The aim, naturally, is to explain the principles of open data and how they can be put to work. Jeni took a keen – if slightly apprehensive – set of players through the basics. The key pieces are hexagonal data tiles, she said, which represent data sets of different types. Clouds, for example, are weather data. Trains are transport. The tiles have two sides: a closed side and an open side.

Continue reading Datopolis: the board game for open data

Open Data Camp 2.0 – Details Announced

Map of United Kingdom and Ireland with markers showing where ODcamps have been, in Winchester and Hampshire
ODCamp on Tour!

 

On the weekend of the 6th and 7th of June, several of the organisers of Open Data Camp were at Blue Light Camp – helping to spread the open data love. In the midst of the activity, a tweet was smuggled out:

All true..!

We have been working hard to make sure that Open Data Camp moves around the country, and given the first one was in deepest southern England, we really wanted to bring the next one up North. We asked for people to put forward their recommendations – and though there was some initial interest from Leeds and Bradford – the only concrete proposals were from Manchester (The Shed, Manchester Metropolitan University’s Digital Innovation Centre) and Preston (The Media Innovation Studio at the University of Central Lancashire). Both are excellent venues, but we, the organisers, decided that because ODCamp is still in its early days, we could make good use of the well-established open data community in Manchester to bring a local flavour to the camp, while retaining the national (international?!) prominence.

So, the details that we know so far are that it will be held on the 10th and 11th of October 2015, at The Shed, Manchester. And that’s it! Because it’s an unconference, we don’t know what will happen, but if its anything like the first one, there will be a LOT of cake excellent sessions, pitched by incredible open data people.

Any suggestions, comments or feedback would be great – either through the comments box below, or on twitter. You could probably tap up the organisers directly if you want the personal touch. As a reminder, we are:

Mark Braggins
James Cattell
Neil Ford
Hendrik Grothuis
Martin Howitt
Lucy Knight
Pauline Roche
Giuseppe Sollazzo
Sasha Taylor
Sian Thomas
Jamie Whyte

We think we need a smattering of local knowledge to make sure the camp is a success, both to help connect us with local groups and businesses, and to help with the social side. For these, we’ve asked two people to join the organisers:

Julian Tait, of Open Data Manchester
Vim Appadoo, of SpacePortX

Keep an eye on this site for more details as they are released – ticketing etc. You should also follow ODCamp on twitter for updates.

Finally, these sorts of things would absolutely not be possible without the generosity of our sponsors. If you feel like you can contribute to the costs in exchange for publicity (and a warm feeling inside), see our sponsors pages.

Many thanks, and we look forward to seeing you in October!

The Organisers