By Jacques Mailloux (Guest Blogger)
In launching the Government of Canada’s much-anticipated next-generation open data portal, data.gc.ca, earlier this summer, Minister Clement challenged Canadian entrepreneurs to mine the vast reserves of Canada’s “new natural resource”, open data, and to repurpose it into valuable, user-friendly apps, spurring innovation, boosting growth, and serving citizens better.
The Minister’s call for the public sector to open up even more data was applauded by the open data community who realized the value robust data presents. Open Data providers believe open data can, at least, provide good information to citizens. Their vision, however, extends beyond the production of an app that displays an open dataset, to a future that sees open data as raw material that can be linked and forged into broader and deeper intelligence that is transferred into real actions and activities.
For the Open Data community, the Open Data Speed Dating event at GTEC 2013 will provide the ideal forum to engage and relate. Open Data Speed Dating will match up to 20 open data providers with open data enthusiasts, entrepreneurs, or developers. The spotlight will be on Canadian public sector open data across all three levels of government.
The public wants and demands more open data. Realizing this, and acknowledging the potential that open data holds, governments are releasing more open data monthly. Open data portals invite citizens to “Suggest a Dataset” with the click of a button. This “new natural resource” is actually growing, and with it, the possibilities it represents.
GTEC 2013 Open Data Speed Dating promises to be rapid-paced and energetic (that’s the “speed” aspect). It also promises to be engaging and collaborative with hopes of establishing longer-term relationships between the participants (that’s as far as the “Dating” aspect goes). Finally, in the spirit of the “Open Data” movement, the venue will be completely open to those in attendance at the GTEC exhibition to observe the interactions, and learn more about Canadian Open Data. The outcomes will be connections of people to people and people to data; enlightened participants and observers; insightful ideas and new believers. With such a non-traditional approach, unexpected outcomes are possible. Who knows?
There are still some openings. If you are interested in participating in this event, register now before all the spots are filled.
Jacques Mailloux, CIO Department of Foreign Affairs, and Trade and Development Canada
Head Organizers of the GTEC 2013 Open Data Speed Dating.