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This topic area is an Open Forum. All ideas for Data.gov’s future are welcomed here.

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Submitted by Unsubscribed User

Create standards that are needed to spur open data-

As the Dublin Core proved - a little bit of standardization can go a long way. In the open gov data arena, a short list of the areas it would make sense to have global standards on would help all governments and citizens get clear on what needs to be developed for voluntary adoption and where we develop the standards. This idea is to openly develop that short list so we can accelerate this transformation.

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39 votes
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Submitted by (@afuller)

Notify the public if data is removed

Comparing the list of agency participation on data.gov, it appears that the number of raw data sets and tools posted by certain agencies has gone down at certain times. If an agency removes access to raw data or a tool on data.gov, it should be noted on the site, and a reason for the removal should be given.

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29 votes
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Submitted by (@davidsmith)

Relate Datasets

In browsing the current Data.gov holdings, one sees data which has in some instances been chunked (for example large datasets which would contain too many records as CSV) - perhaps these may be broken out by state, et cetera. Similarly, there are cases where there are datasets which are part of a time series (e.g. 2005->2006->2007 annual data releases) - it would be useful toward usability to have ways to relate these ...more »

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27 votes
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Submitted by (@larrytalley)

Clarify Data.gov Feedback Loop

I applaud the visionaries behind Data.gov for understanding the importance of feedback. It is great that there are feedback input mechanisms for datasets and also this feedback input site (ideascale) for feedback on the solution governance, architecture, and technologies. But in an ideal world feedback is an ongoing conversation, with comments or suggestions going into the system, responses and requests for use cases ...more »

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24 votes
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Submitted by (@lesliedb)

Change to Paperwork Reduction Act

In light of the new Open Government Directive that was released by the White House on Dec. 8th 2009 can the Paperwork Reduction Act be updated (or at least and emergency exception be made) to allow government agencies to request feedback from the public to make better decisions as to what data sets these government agencies should make available.

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22 votes
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Submitted by (@michael.daconta)

Transparency of the Process behind the Data

A citizen should be able to request a description of how a data element is derived. For example, the very controversial - "saved or created jobs" data element should have an explanation of the formula or the derived fields used to calculate the number. Another example, would be the all important unemployment data - how is that percentage calculated? This would give the public more confidence in using the data. In ...more »

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22 votes
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Submitted by (@davidsmith)

Integrate Taxonomies, Ontologies, Thesauri

Toward more effective means of data discovery, particularly as more and more datasets are published and registered in data.gov, one thing that might provide value, particularly to, for example, the science community, might be integration and use of existing taxonomies, ontologies and thesauri as developed by various agencies. Models for integration exist, such as CUAHSI in the water community, or GBIF for biodiversity. ...more »

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18 votes
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Submitted by (@mmaizel)

File size

It is useful to show the filesize as many agencies do. This helps some users decide (a) whether the size is too small to contain the data envisioned in the description (often the case) or (2) to prepare for an especially large load of data.

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18 votes
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Submitted by (@akwill)

Support and coordinate US Gov web services for tabular data

Many of the goals of data.gov will only be realized when many govt data shops serve web services using common standards so they can be accessed by other web services and synthesizing portals. Like a common 'what data exists in your database in this ___ geographic area [lat long box, county, zipcode, LL/zip centroid plus distance]?' web service standard. Work with teams in the major gov data centers to develop standards ...more »

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15 votes
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Submitted by (@alvaro)

Improve data quality

Hi, one of the greatest problems I find right now is data quality. First, there are no way to validate the data. Second some data (for example dataset 401 about budgets) contains negative values (check Dept. of Defense). This not only is not useful, but makes people and developers distrust data.gov as a source of information and valid data.

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15 votes
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Submitted by (@michael.daconta)

Top 5 metadata elements?

What would the community feel is the top 5 metadata elements that should be mandatory for a dataset catalog record AND of those 5 which do you think is most important to developers and citizens wanting to discover and use datasets that are relevant to them? Here is a recommendation: 1. Subject Coverage (aka topic or "WHAT", for a hierarchical tree display/browsing) 2. Schema Location (for structured datasets) 3. Geospatial ...more »

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13 votes
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Submitted by (@dorothyalt)

Disclosure of Nursing Homes Problems

We need the disclosure of the names of nursing homes and rehabilitation centers that have either low ratings, high incidences of abuse, neglect or high rates of death. We, the public, are unaware of the ratings of these institutions when we place our loved ones there. They are recommended to us by hospitals upon discharge of elderly relatives, so we naturally believe they are safe. In 1999, my 76 year old mother died ...more »

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13 votes
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