Government Data And A Quest For Transparency

In today’s world, there’s a lot of fuss about big data. But what exactly is it? Big data refers to all electronic information that’s out there. Search engines index only a small portion of the data available on the internet known as structured data; they do not take into account emails, videos, or posts of social media sites, which are considered unstructured or semi-structured forms of data. Because of the sheer volume of data out there, it’s impossible for anyone to sift through it all on their own.

Data And Business

For the most part, people do not have access to big data because it takes up so much space and requires specialized software to index and sift through. Many businesses will look at and analyze such data to gather BI, also known as business intelligence, which helps them shape marketing campaigns, drive up revenue, and provide better customer service as they sift through data quickly and make business decisions based on their findings. However, there is now a way for people to access information that they wouldn’t normally see.

The People’s Data

The general public now has access to a bulk of government information thanks to a recent redesign of Data.gov, aiding in government transparency and make information easy for the public to access. The site was originally launched in 2009, but this is the first major redesign that it has undergone; it now homes several data visualizations followed by an abundance of reports, articles, and posts from various social networks.

Sleek Design Makes Data Accessible

Many people are frustrated that dealing with the government is rarely simple. However, Data.gov aims to change that by offering an abundance of information. The site is designed to be user-friendly, making it convenient for scrolling and searching so that users can find exactly what they are looking for. People have a right to know about what goes on in the government, and now it is possible to find tons of information in one convenient place on the internet.

Wide Variety Of Information Available

Data.gov is home to over 75,000 sets of data, ranging from information about the difference in costs of procedures from hospital to hospital to climate and environmental concerns to credit card discrepancies. Many businesses or entrepreneurs are putting this data to work, creating jobs where the government is unable to do so or cannot do as well as today’s businessmen and women. Of course, some data is not available; notably, the NSA and other intelligence groups which have elected not to offer up any of their information to the site. The site is not for classified government information, but rather an assortment of information that is meant for the public but may not be easy to find unless searched for specifically.

Site Still In The Works

While Data.gov is the first of its kind to offer a visualized source of government information in one convenient location, it is far from complete. The site is still figuring out ways to organize the data to make it more convenient and easy to find what the user is looking for. Regardless of kinks that need to be worked out, Data.gov is a one-of-a-kind site that aids in government transparency, placing the people’s data back in their hands. The site underwent minor changes in 2010, but this is the first major change the site first launched, so there are bound to be some bugs to work out.

Make Use Of Information

While people may not need access to all of the data in the world for BI purposes like corporations, it is still important to know that the internet is a powerful resource that extends beyond just search engines.

Check out Data.gov to search through public government information today; its interface makes it easy to sift through and find what you are looking for.