ICR = Information Collection Request. Example: http://edicsweb.ed.gov/. Each agency has a site like this, but it is sometimes hard to find. If they were posted together, data.gov users could more easily discover interconnections among data sets. The files at each link on the page explain: (1) WHAT data a department wants to collect from the public, and the form that will be used to collect it; (2) WHO must fill out ...more »
It would be helpful if there were some standard formats for the data sets that are posted on data.gov. It would make it easier to create mashups and to integrate data across data sets. In addition, standards for key fields are needed.
This entry is a consensus recommendation of seven organizations that work on government transparency of which OpenTheGovernment.org is one.
Use tagging or metadata to enable the public to bring together information on a topic. The thesaurus that USA.gov uses provides a useful example of the needed vocabulary.
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 »
The "Collaboration" section that starts on page 9 of the draft is a great start. Over at http://groups.csail.mit.edu/haystack/blog/2009/11/23/building-a-social-data-commons/ I've listed a few more. Summarized here: 1) For each data set, provide a set of developer-generated recipes for data manipulation so that future developers can stand on the shoulders of previous users of this data set by sharing tools and techniques. ...more »
Have Data.gov serve as a platform for serving national data. In addition to serving as a catalog, provide actual data hosting capability, e.g. hosting national framework data layers to support a wide variety of mapping (ala The National Map). Additionally, this may be of particular value to support collaborative and cross-agency efforts such as Imagery For The Nation – Imagery For The Nation (IFTN) is an attempt to ...more »
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.
Post the download link in a more obvious spot or make it more obvious. At first glance it blends into the webpage. I want to see the download button be big and obvious because that’s what I’m immediately looking for when I get to that page.
In light of the excellent work other governments are doing in this area, the US should spearhead an international group (maybe in conjunction with the UN) to share best practices, cross-fertilize experience and maybe even share common code or data formats.
There should be a way to search for data that was created in 1997.
There should also be a way to search for only static data. Likewise there should be a way to filter by only data that is actively being updated or dynamic.
The Autocad DWG format is not readable with normal tools.
Taxpayers should not be forced to spend money on tools to read the files.
Even the DXF file is more readable.
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 »
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.
The agency posting the data should assert that it has performed certain quality gates/checks on the datasets it is publishing. I just downloaded one dataset provided as a spreadsheet and one of the columns is: "Contructor" Either that is a weird term or it is an error and meant to say "Contractor". Looking at the data (which is a bunch of acronyms) it is probably the latter. Did whoever published the dataset check ...more »
In addition to the search options currently on data.gov and the spatial search capabilities discussed in other ideas, I suggest considering a third alternative: ask-a-friend. Like any forum, I post a question (for a specific dataset/service) and other users of the site may help me by pointing me to it. I could share my favorite (bookmarked) datasets with others or browse through their bookmarks to find data someone found ...more »