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Lost Boy

The blog of @ldodds

Published: 2016-10-01T14:14:28Z


Why are bulk downloads of open data important?


I was really pleased to see that at the GODAN Summit last week the USDA announced the launch of its Branded Food Product Database, providing nutritional information on over 80,000 food products. Product reference data is an area that has been long under-represented in the open data commons, so its great to see data of […](image)

People like you are in this dataset


One of the recent projects we’ve done at Bath: Hacked is to explore a sample of the Strava Metro data covering the city of Bath. I’m not going to cover all of the project details in this post, but if you’re interested then I suggest you read this introductory post and then look at some of the different […](image)

Help me use your data


I’ve been interviewed a couple of times recently by people interested in understanding how best to publish data to make it useful for others.  Once by a startup and a couple of times by researchers. The core of the discussion has essentially been the same question: “how do you know if a dataset will be […](image)

Reputation data portability


Yesterday I went to the ODI lunchtime lecture on portability of reputation data. It was an interesting discussion which triggered a few thoughts which I thought I’d share here. The debate was prompted by a call for evidence from the Department formally known as BIS around consumer data and account switching: “The government would like to understand […](image)

The state of open licensing


I spend a lot of time reading through licences and terms & conditions. Much more so than I thought I would when I first started getting involved with open data. After all, I largely just like making things with data. But there’s still so much data that is public but not open. Or datasets that are nearly open […](image)

From services to products


Over the course of my career I’ve done a variety of consulting projects as both an employee and freelancer. I’ve helped found and run a small consulting team. And, through my experience leading engineering teams, some experience of designing products and platforms. I’ve been involved in a few discussions, particularly over the last 12 months or so, around how […](image)

“The Wizard of the Wash”, an open data parable


The fourth open data parable. In a time long past, in a land far away, there was once a great fen. A vast, sprawling wetland filled with a richness of plants and criss-crossed with many tiny streams and rivers. This fertile land was part of a great kingdom ruled by a wise and recently crowned […](image)

Discussion document: archiving open data


This is a brief post to highlight a short discussion document that I recently published about archiving open data.  The document is intended to help gather ideas, suggestions and best practices around archiving open data to the Internet Archive. The goal being to gather together useful guidance that can help encourage archiving and distribution of open data […](image)

What 3 Words? Jog on mate!


The website notes that “Address data is essential infrastructure“. Geography underpins so much of the data we collect and is collected about us, making address registers important parts of national data infrastructure. In the UK we’ve been wrestling with the fact that our address register is not open for many years. After the decision to sell […](image)

Beyond Publishers and Consumers: Some Example Ecosystems


Yesterday I wrote a post suggesting that we should move beyond publishers and consumers and recognise the presence of a wider variety of roles in the open data ecosystem. I suggested a taxonomy of roles as a starting point for discussion. In this post I wanted to explore how we can use that taxonomy to help […](image)