What Can Open Data do for You?

As an OpenColorado board member and promoter of open government, I have worked to educate people about the opportunities that can be created from sharing government data, known as open data.

Government’s sharing data creates many opportunities for transparency, collaboration, community building, and economic development. There have been many papers, articles, blogs, and opinions that illustrate the benefits of open data.

Still, I am always excited when I see the benefits of open data in my own life. In this case, my excitement came from using Denver’s Crime Map while looking for a new house. I was getting ready to make an offer on a house, so I wanted to look up information about the neighborhood. Crime was one of the key pieces I wanted to check.

Here’s what I found. First, crime near my current home:

Denver Crime Map

Next, crime near the new house I was looking at:

Denver Crime Map


When I scrolled over a bubble, I could see the types of crimes committed at an address or location. I could click the bubble for more details.

Great! Now I can compare the crime in different areas. In this case, it looks like there was less crime in the new spot. But that’s what happens when you live near Colfax in Denver. By the way, watch out when you park at a light rail station.

This is just one of many opportunities and benefits that can come from a city sharing its data. And OpenColorado is very happy to have Denver sharing its data through our data catalog.




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March 5th, 2013 | | Blog |  No Comments