MediaMill Gazette 74

A new ODI chief, civil partnerships and a doggy dashboard. 

Jeni Tennison OBE appointed ODI Chief Executive Officer
Congratulations to Jeni who said “I’m excited about the opportunities that lie ahead for the ODI. The team here has created a company that – with its network of startups, franchises and partners – has generated over £50M of direct value to the economy from data, since it opened in December 2012.”

UK shelves privatisation of Land Registry
The plan to privatise the Land Registry, “the body that has recorded the ownership of property in the UK since 1862, has been quietly postponed by the government”. Meanwhile…

Open addresses: will the address wars ever end?
“Data infrastructure is a competitive advantage in the 21st century. We need to move on from old licensing and funding models that don’t make the best use of the qualities of the web and data.”

Civil partnerships: the ONS and the data journalist
David Ottewell, Head of Trinity Mirror data Unit, took exception to a change in the way the Office of National statistics published data around civil partnerships. I picked out a few of the issues its raised.

Draw your city – go on, you know you want to
A lovely project “to crowdsource information on the area you think different cities cover, in addition to a little information on how long you’ve lived there – if at all. Zoom in or out if you need to and then click ‘Start Mapping’ in the top left of the screen.” Check out Alasdair’s twitter feed for some results. 

Junction Malfunction and a New Dawn
Given the issues of who should be publishing what that the ONS story raises, this data-driven piece from West Midland Police on cycle safety is an interesting read.

12 Complex Concepts Made Easier Through Great Data Visualization
A neat roundup of data visualization (with some great examples)  with a lean towards understanding why interest in the discipline is growing.  You might also enjoy this piece on the Coder and the designer on the Information Capital. A good site to explore. And finally this piece from last year on the Journalist-Engineer rounds things off nicely.

Blood, Sweat & Civic Hacking
“When we look at the future of open data, it seems clear that the most significant benefits for governments might be realized with the help of groups of volunteers working to make their communities better.”

Data in multiple languages means data in multiple cultures
Maybe a viz is worth a thousands words but those words and the language they are in might be just as important.

How to avoid 10 common mistakes in data reporting
Thats reporting in the journalism sense. highlighted this useful primer. 

London’s Selfless New Tube Map Encourages You to Walk, Not Ride
I think using steps between as a unit of measurement for city transit would be a great ‘human friendly’ approach to smart city transit issues.

Snapchat’s Local Stories Were a Grand Experiment in Crowdsourced TV
Last week Snapchat announced it was closing its local stories office. It was predominantly a US thing but the reasons behind it say something about the  economic challenges of doing local content.

The global epic of data distribution
It seems you can’t critic open data these days without a classical reference.

Investigative Dashboard Search
“Investigative Dashboard Search lets you search across 141 collections of documents from previous investigations, official sources, and scraped databases.”

These magnets have become some of L.A.’s highest-scoring public schools
It’s a US based story but given the whole Grammar school debate in the UK the level of detail – and the fact they opened up the data – makes for a bit of a benchmark for coverage.

Finding empathy in 604,596 lines of migration data
A nice project that mixes the human with code.  Also worth a look is the Exodus Project 

A Technical Primer On Causality
This gets ‘hard’ quickly. Well it did for me. But it does say “technical” 

… And because data isn’t just a human condition there’s – Doglogbook

Github use by % of population
James Millner has produced an interesting interactive on github use. Can github use be an indicator of innovative activity? If it can, I wonder what it says and about where the ‘tech hubs’ in the UK