recommended reading

The best open data releases of 2012

Digital Genetics\Shutterstock.com

Last year, Cities named ten of its favorite metro datasets of 2011 from cities across North America, illustrating the breadth of what we might learn (regarding mosquito traps! misplaced vehicles! energy consumption!) in the still relatively young field of urban open data. For this year's installment, we're going one step further. Sure, raw data is great. But useful tools, maps and data visualizations built with said data are even better.

Below, you'll find our picks for 2012's best open data releases from municipal vaults, with an emphasis on tools that can be used by anyone, not just developers and data geeks. If we missed your favorite, please add it in the comments.

1. Crime in Philadelphia. Philadelphia snuck onto our 2012 list just under the wire,publishing last week a big data set on all major crimes in the city dating back to January 1, 2006. The data is now updated daily, covering incidents of homicide, rape, robbery, assault and theft. Philadelphia now joins Chicago, which released 10 years of crime data last year. Baltimore has a similar dataset. For Philadelphians more interested in live trends than historic ones, the city is now also mapping recent crimes (see the above graphic). A smart bonus feature: when you click on an individual incident, the map gives you an opportunity to "submit a tip" to the Philadelphia Police Department.

2. Bikeshare rides in Boston. Boston’s Hubway bikeshare system published a massive file of historic trip data earlier this year, then invited riders and developers to turn the information into something useful with a data visualization challenge. This map comes from one of the winners, Ari Ofsevit, showing the average speeds across different routes between bikeshare stations. Capital Bikeshare in Washington also publishes trip data. Nice Ride in Minneapolis did so earlier this year as well, although that release ran into privacy complications when it turned out the anonymoized data wasn’t so anonymous after all.

Read more at The Atlantic Cities

(Image via Digital Genetics/Shutterstock.com)

Threatwatch Alert

Thousands of cyber attacks occur each day

See the latest threats

JOIN THE DISCUSSION

Close [ x ] More from Nextgov
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from Nextgov.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Modernizing IT for Mission Success

    Surveying Federal and Defense Leaders on Priorities and Challenges at the Tactical Edge

    Download
  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

    Download
  • Effective Ransomware Response

    This whitepaper provides an overview and understanding of ransomware and how to successfully combat it.

    Download
  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

    Download
  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.