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What is Open Data?

Posted by openkent on June 8, 2011

Do you want to know what is open data, where we're getting the data from, how it's being published and how you can use it? Read on!

What is Open Data?

Open data is non-personal information that an organisation or an individual puts online in such a way that other people can use and re-use for free. This isn’t a legal definition, so if you want to know the terms and conditions of using the data on this website, see this.

What's a feed?

You might ask why all the data here has a link to “view feed”. A feed can make it easier for web developers to re-use the data. If you’re not a web developer, in most cases, you’ll be able to download the data directly to a spreadsheet.

In some cases, the data won’t be available in a spreadsheet format. That’s because where the data is frequently updated, it makes more sense to use a feed as you don’t need to go looking for different versions of spreadsheets.

How are we able to publish the data?

Open Kent allows the above partner organisations to upload, share and compare information in a joined up manner. The IBM Mashup Centre is a system that provides organisations easy access to a wide range of publically available data in a simple and secure way.

IBM have partnered with Open Kent to provide an end-to-end enterprise mashup platform using IBM Mashup Centre technology. It supports the rapid assembly of dynamic web applications with the management, security, and governance capabilities IT requires.

Who is providing the data?

Ashford Borough Council, Canterbury City Council, Dover District Council, Gravesham Borough Council, Kent County Council, Kent Fire and Rescue, Maidstone Borough Council, Medway Council, Sevenoaks District Council, Shepway District Council, Swale Borough Council, Thanet District Council, Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council and Tunbridge Wells Borough Council.

If you have a problem with the data, please contact the organisations responsible for the individual dataset, see the links above.

Other questions?

If you have a question that we haven't covered, please add it as a comment below and we'll try and find the answer and then add that to the FAQs.