Using publicly available data and open source tools to find answers to questions about Los Angeles. What are the most expensive pieces of land in LA County? Which of these has the most expensive “improvement”, or building? What is the assessed value of Dodger Stadium? What are the most expensive cities by area in LA County? Who owns the most land? What percentage of the land in the city of LA is devoted to public space? where is the geographic center of LA County? [more inside]
PLOS’ New Data Policy: Public Access to Data "PLOS has always required that authors make their data available to other academic researchers who wish to replicate, reanalyze, or build upon the findings published in our journals. In an effort to increase access to this data, we are now revising our data-sharing policy for all PLOS journals: authors must make all data publicly available, without restriction, immediately upon publication of the article. Beginning March 3rd, 2014, all authors who submit to a PLOS journal will be asked to provide a Data Availability Statement, describing where and how others can access each dataset that underlies the findings." Openscience.org also have a primer on why open science data is important.
"People are denied access to research hidden behind paywalls every day. This problem is invisible, but it slows innovation, kills curiosity and harms patients. This is an indictment of the current system. Open Access has given us the solution to this problem by allowing everyone to read and re-use research. We created the Open Access Button to track the impact of paywalls and help you get access to the research you need. By using the button you’ll help show the impact of this problem, drive awareness of the issue, and help change the system. Furthermore, the Open Access Button has several ways of helping you get access to the research you need right now." [more inside]
The Ordnance Survey (the national mapping authority for Great Britain) has a large amount of its mapping data available online for free use. Over the past few weeks, one of its summer interns has been using a few of its datasets to recreate the whole of mainland GB at 50:1 scale in Minecraft.
The Dutch National Archive (Nationaal Archief) can trace its history back to 1802. It's main task is to maintain governmental archives of the Dutch rijksoverheid and its predecessors, as well as similar archives from the province of Zuid-Holland. It also maintains several other collections from non-governmental institutions like the Dutch football association and the Spaarnestad photo collection. Through its work it has amassed a vast pictorial database, parts of which have now been opened up to the public through its own website as well as their Flickr photostreams. [more inside]
If we can make public transit more convenient, more people will ride public transit. More people riding public transit equals less driving. Less driving equals a healthier planet.
City-Go-Round is a website that gathers reviews of transit-related mobile apps. It's also trying to shame the 670 transit authorities it knows of who don't have open data (versus a paltry 97 that do) into releasing it by listing them and asking its users to petition the head of each one. (From FrontSeat, the same folks who brought you Walk Score [previously] and the Predatory Lending Association [previously].)