Question 7

What are the most exciting applications of datasets or data products you are aware of – here or internationally? We are, again, particularly interested in the following areas: registration activities, environmental science, critical infrastructure and the built environment.

  • Nigel Parsons

    My company’s own interest is in the built environment and developing software applications that provide users with a large amount of allied data within one application. For example taking a base Ordnance Survey dataset and overlaying this with geological data on soil conditons and environmental data such as areas at risk of flooding.

  • Tim Thornton

    I think that broadly speaking the interesting areas are in crowdsourcing and aggregation. For example, in the marine sector ActiveCaptain is a US based service gathering local knowledge from mariners, and our TeamSurv project combines data logged by mariners with coastal measurements of tide etc to create better charts.
    Also, the various tools looking at traffic speeds, lift sharing come to mind.
    But the big problem with all of these is building up a critical mass – we don’t want 20 half working, incomplete projects, we need one or two where we know the answers can be relied upon, and this is always the problem

  • Sheelagh F M Keddie

    Google Earth!

  • Philip John

    I concur on this one, although it should be noted that it is a Staffordshire-based tool not Shropshire. It’s built by Lichfield District Council and their webmaster, Stuart Harrison.

    It is soon to be incorporated into The Lichfield Blog ( which is a hyperlocal news site for Lichfield, using the API. We want more of this.

  • Jacqui Taylor

    I believe that the Big Society will be significantly more effective if we were able to use more local authority data. We are particularly interested in health and education data and sustainability is a new area we wish to explore.

  • Stephenb

    The ability to identify the potential of land for successful forest establishment (e.g. for carbon sequestration or reafforestation).

  • Jonathan Raper

    Why is transport information in the “too difficult box”? It’s actually one of the most demanded types of information because you can use it to make decisions now. Just see the download numbers for content apps on the online stores like Android Market. There is much good practice in this sector e.g. TfL’s live tube departures data (placr processes this to produce independent performance statistics) and Traveline’s Nextbuses API. I expect you are going to moderate this comment away, but you can’t expect to get a good reaction from the public or enable SME’s to create revenues and jobs unless you release the good stuff.

  • Mmedo Duffort

    Google earth has a huge potential to make dataset easily searchable. Generally, free / open source platform where the development is partly undertaken or lead by the users.

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