There is something so delicious about a well-formated data-set. With a spreadsheet of data in my hands, I know the sweaty work of collection and polling is over, and I can get to the manipulations. Organization Polaris Project’s Tweet-A-Thon this week, I spent hours every day keeping tabs on the spreadsheet into which fellows inputted their tweets. I set it so the more they contributed, the prettier colors their tallies were. More importantly, I kept a running tab of the number of posts and the average number of posts per fellow, so everyone knew where everyone else stood.
This is exactly what Vivek Kundra, Jeffrey Zients and Aneesh Chopra are doing on a national scale–making governmental data public, and letting people play with it. In this great POLITICO article, I learned about 3 relatively new websites full of fun government data:
All of these sites promise big data sets, which I look forward to digging through. Graphs of births and deaths in your county, or national parks by state, the fun never ends!
Fine, for the non-data geeks in the crowd, here is a great video by former Somalian refugee and current Toronto native, K’naan (you may have heard it during the World Cup):
“The fire is the main comfort of the camp, whether in summer or winter, and is about as ample at one season as at another. It is as well for cheerfulness as for warmth and dryness.”–Henry David Thoreau