Reflection on uses of open city government data, including apps, from Chicago Chief Technology Officer

Reflection on uses of open city government data, including apps, from Chicago Chief Technology Officer

There was a new post on the first day of the new year in 2012, Ascent Stage, the official blog Web site of John Tolva, who is the Chief Technology Officer for the city of Chicago.

In the post, entitled Open Data in Chicago: progress and direction, he reflects on the last year, 2011, and the advancements made in open data movement for a more transparent government of the city of Chicago.

It is an interesting read and recommended for Chicago technology enthusiasts, as there were indeed some major advancements in the open data movement, which starts with a report and quote from Mayor Emmanuel, "Set high standards for open, participatory government to involve all Chicagoans". This statement gave initiative to the release of Chicago open data sets in a source location data portal.

The article goes into more detail about the recent "Apps for Metro Chicago" contest, which encouraged the use of this now public data to create helpful apps for mobile devices and computers to aid Chicagoans and their lifestyles, in different Transportation and Community focused categories.

Tolva then concludes the post on some direction he sees the open Chicago government data being taken and expanded on in 2012 in four major categories:

The city-as-platform (which includes the CTA Tracker and Bus Tracker ideas), the Rise of Civic Startups (for example Everyblock growing out of ChicagoCrime.org), Predictive Analytics, and Unified Information.

Again, the article is meant to set the stage for the to look to 2012 as an expansion to Chicago's open data movement, and it is a good read for those interested in how a more open and transparent government can aid Chicagoans with technology focused on public good.

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