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US Federal Government Launches 109

Elastic Vapor writes "I'm happy to announce that the US Federal Government earlier today launched the new Data.Gov website. The primary goal of Data.Gov is to improve access to Federal data and expand creative use of those data beyond the walls of government by encouraging innovative ideas (e.g., web applications). strives to make government more transparent and is committed to creating an unprecedented level of openness in Government. The openness derived from will strengthen the Nation's democracy and promote efficiency and effectiveness in Government." I hope the data reported will be impartially selected, honestly gathered, clearly explained, and perfectly accurate. Perhaps they could start with inspiration from the Concord Coalition's National Debt Counter.
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US Federal Government Launches

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  • IIS, once again (Score:4, Informative)

    by tcopeland ( 32225 ) <tom@thomasleecop ... RGcom minus poet> on Thursday May 21, 2009 @02:13PM (#28043069) Homepage

    $ curl -i []
    HTTP/1.1 301 Moved Permanently
    Date: Thu, 21 May 2009 18:13:00 GMT
    Server: Microsoft-IIS/6.0


  • by modestmelody ( 1220424 ) on Thursday May 21, 2009 @03:36PM (#28044555)
    One of the best tools I've found online for going through government data is the IPEDS (Integrated Post-Secondary Data System), which allows you to mine for some pretty interesting and specific information that's reported to the Department of Education by all post-secondary institutions. The ability to work with this common data collected by the government anyway makes my own research far easier.

    Wolfram|Alpha mining sets like these would just take the whole process one step further by allowing non-expert users access using plain language searches. I'm all for it.

    People want accountability from their government, but I think many of those same people a) Don't understand how to read through thousands of pages of complex collected data b) Assume the government knows how to do (a) well, and c) Are often too lazy to do (a) and based on (b) thinks it should just be laid out there in pretty pictures just because they thought that information was important in the moment. This is precisely where a tool like Wolfram|Alpha could be quite useful.

    Now if only Wolfram would list their sources and be far more clear about how a data set was collected and interpreted, then we'd really be able to get to work.

I've got a bad feeling about this.