Research and discussion for citizens and decision makers

Senthil S. Natarajan

Open data for Houston

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The announcement made me giddy: As of September 18, Houston has an open data policy. Most of the city’s data will become public, allowing any resident access to terabytes of information that can be used to improve the city’s quality of life.


[T]he beauty of open data isn’t just for us stat-heads. Think about it: Everything you do can be turned into a data point. Data is the only unbiased source of information in the world. Numbers can’t lie; numbers are impartial. That is simultaneously overwhelming and amazing.


Data is for the people. Open data means increased government transparency, better lifestyle applications and services, more accurate predictive capabilities, and so on. It can help improve education, improve public works, and increase the efficiency with which people solve public problems. It can help businesses, big and small, make better decisions.

As governments shift toward open data, the onus shifts to us, the people, to apply these numbers, to turn these data points into tangible improvements.

Get excited, H-Town. Get ecSTATic.

Full commentary: The open-data revolution rolls into Houston
Source: The Houston Chronicle, September 23, 2014

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