Category: Civic Hacking

OpenData.city is Live!

Today, we’re thrilled to announce  that OpenData.city is live! As a company born out of Open Data, we’ve seen how fast the field has evolved.  When I first entered NYCBigApps back in 2010, NYC’s DataMine was primarily a list of 350 files being served out of a web server – no API, files in various formats, little metadata. Since then, NYC has become the top Municipal Open Data City …

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PDF stands for “PDF Data-Fication”

(counter-clockwise) Mayor Bill de Blasio with Dick Dadey, Executive Director of Citizens Union NY, Noel Hidalgo from BetaNYC, Rachael Fauss, director of Public Policy at Citizens Union, and yours truly Last Thursday, I had the great honor of witnessing the passage of the City Record Online Law.  In my book, its as big a milestone as the widely-acclaimed PLUTO dataset release last year. Because the City Record is the …

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Prototyping the “Answering People Interface”...

Earlier this spring, a blog post by recent Code for America (CfA) fellow Dave Guarino  generated some buzz in Civic Tech circles – “ETL for America.” (ETL stands for Extract, Transform, Load) In it, he wrote about how the oft-repeated mantra at CfA of “building interfaces to government that are simple, beautiful, and easy to use” is but one piece of the civic tech puzzle.  He states: “many of the problems …

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Invisible Open Data

On the Internet, there is the concept of the Deep Web – “large parts of the web that is not reachable by search engines.”  By one estimate, 80% of the information on the web is “invisible.” On the Open Data front, I submit that a lot of government data is also “invisible”, with a large majority of it locked up behind custom search engines with …

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Vision Zero – Visualizing Traffic-Related Fataliti...

When I first moved to NYC back in ’91, part of my weekly ritual was to haul my laundry to the laundromat.  I stayed with my brother in Maspeth back then, and the nearest laundromat was on the other side of Queens Boulevard on 69th street. Even then, Queens Boulevard was known as the “Boulevard of Death” and I would take special care in crossing …

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The Where of New York City Traffic Deaths

More New Yorkers die on the streets because of traffic-related trauma than because of homicides.  Recently, these deaths have become a hot-button issue for everyone in the city, from pedestrians to politicians.  PediaCities is tackling the issue, too, using civic data to put together a map that answers a simple question: where do we get hit? What’s going on Not too long ago, a spate …

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PediaCities: Making Smarter Communities through Civic Te...

PediaCities is super proud of its recent civic tech collaboration with the New York City Department of Education’s iZone, in which we helped the iZone tackle the challenge of high school choice.  We were also very proud to have been chosen as one of the civic tech leaders featured in a recent panel discussion at the Talking Transition Tent. Photo by n0n3ck Yesterday, our product …

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PediaCities Testifies at New York City Council Hearing a...

PediaCities, as an open-data company, was happy to join others from the civic hacking community in New York City to testify at a city council hearing about DoITT’s administration of the New York City Open Data Law.   Our product manager, Nathan Storey, delivered the following testimony at a the hearing this afternoon: Testimony in support of T2013-7110 Honorable Chairperson, I am Nathan Storey, Product Manager …

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Public School Data to Help New Yorkers Choose Their High...

The New York City Department of Education unveiled the results of the first School Choice Design Challenge (SCDC), “a competition for software developers to design applications that will assist students and families during the high school choice process. The apps help families search and navigate the high school directory to find the schools right for them.” We were especially excited to see the 6 apps …

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Watch PediaCities co-founder Joel Natividad on BBC

PediaCities is “doing big data for good, for regular people,” says our co-founder Joel Natividad in a recent video interview with the BBC’s Jonny Dymond. The BBC piece explores how big data and NYC’s open data protocols are changing the way the city functions. Dymond observes that New York City is “gathering data, processing data, and distributing data like never before, tearing down the walls …

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