International Open Data Day – An Update

(Can’t read the whole post? Important stuff is highlighted in grey below.)

Two years ago, I met some open data advocates from Brazil and Ottawa, and we schemed of doing an international open data hackathon. A few weeks later, this blog post launched International Open Data Day with the hope that supporters would emerge in 5-6 cities to host local events.

Instead, on December 4th, 2010, an amazing group of volunteers organized events in 60 cities on every continent except Australia (OK, and Antartica). A year later, our second effort enjoyed similar success – including Australia this time! We also benefited from a generous informal partnership with the Random Hacks of Kindness, who let our open data hackers participate in spaces where they were organizing hackathons on the same day.

A number of people have been asking me about this year’s International Open Data Day. First, I want to apologize to the community of wonderful people who have been asking me if will we do it again. Between an outrageous travel schedule, work commitments and, most happily, the advent of my little boy – whose 36 hour birth(!) prevented me from participating in Vancouver’s Open Data hackathon last year(!) – I have been remiss in not organizing and communicating information regarding this year’s event.

So, over the past 4 weeks I’ve been consulting with some of the previous year’s organizers (I deeply apologize if I have not spoken to you), and here is the status update:

  1. I’ve been reminded of the awesomeness, organizational skill, patience and general wonderfulness of open data advocates around the world
  2. We are DEFINITELY DOING International Open Data Day and WANT YOU TO PARTICIPATE
  3. For a number of reasons* we are MOVING THE EVENT TO FEB 23rd, 2013.
  4. We are more keen than ever to have this not just be about hacking code, but reusing other projects and BROADENING THE COMMUNITY by using data to do all sorts of things from analysis to visualizations and even just sharing an interesting insight.

So with that in mind, here are a few things that are going on as we speak.

  • If you are interested in participating in, or organizing an International Open Data Day event in your community, please join the Open Data Day mailing list. We’ll post any updates there, and it is a great place to ask questions and get to know other organizers.
  • You may have noticed that opendataday.org is not working. Yikes! We know! We are in the midst of transferring the site over to the Open Knowledge Foundation, who has generously offered to manage it.
  • Once we get the site up – and especially the wiki – I’ll be hitting the mailing list again asking people to start registering their cities, noting locations and sharing information. In the past, the wiki has been amazingly well organized, which has been exceedingly helpful and awesome.
  • For those interested in hosting an event, there is a great guide on how to do so, thanks to Kevin McArthur, Herb Lainchbury and Donna Horn – that can be found here.
  • We are starting to reach out to some of our past partners including The Open Knowledge Foundation, Data.gov/White House, the World Bank, ScraperWiki, the Sunlight Foundation, various Hackerspaces, Hacks and Hackers – and anyone else who wants to be involved, we’d love to hear from you.
  • Feel free to send me an email if you have any thoughts, questions or concerns.

Okay, apologies for the long blog post and the delay in communicating about this. If you have participated or organized an event in the past, thank you. I hope you’re excited about doing it again and that the new date works for you!

Am looking forward to hearing from you.

*Those reasons being: too close to various holidays, too much at the best time of summer in the southern hemisphere, too little time to organize, timing around the Code for America fellows being in their partner cities.

4 thoughts on “International Open Data Day – An Update

  1. leilaboujnane

    Awesome to see this happening again. And I am so glad you moved the date to 2013, will allow more participation from all over the world and time for planning. Looking forward to participating this year. 

    Reply
  2. leilaboujnane

    Awesome to see this happening again. And I am so glad you moved the date to 2013, will allow more participation from all over the world and time for planning. Looking forward to participating this year. 

    Reply
  3. leilaboujnane

    Awesome to see this happening again. And I am so glad you moved the date to 2013, will allow more participation from all over the world and time for planning. Looking forward to participating this year. 

    Reply
  4. Sameer Vasta

    Great to see this happening, and doubly excited that it’s going to happen on my birthday. I’ll definitely be in touch about organizing and hosting stuff, both personally and on behalf of MaRS Data Catalyst. Thanks for all your help, David!

    Reply

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