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Visiting Assistant Professor Uses Public Data to Transform How New Yorkers See Their City

Ben Wellington uses his popular I Quant NY blog to dig into public New York city data posted by city agencies. He digs deep into the the data to post about the city’s filthiest fast-food chains, mapped out how half of Manhattan is within four blocks of a Starbucks and determined which neighborhoods boast the most trees. “His mission for the blog is simple: to change government policy by using open data.”

Some recent posts:

  • Is the NYPD About to Start Ticketing More Cyclists Due to a Mathematical Error?
  • The Hot Spots of New York: A Coverage Map of NYC’s Free WiFi Payphones
  • Colorfully Decoding Manhattan’s Address System
  • Found: The Brooklyn Residence that’s Farthest from the Subway
  • Affordable Housing Without Representation
  • Found: The Manhattan Apartment that’s the Farthest from any Subway
  • You’ll Never Guess the Cleanest Fast Food Joint in NYC
  • Fecal Map NYC: The Worst Places to Swim in the City

NYC geographic data now available for free

The city of New York has finally made a wealth of geographic data available for free. As The Atlantic reports, where you once had to pay $1,500, now the entire package of data — cleverly trademarked “BYTES of the BIG APPLE” by the city — can be accessed for free. This also means that anything made from the data can be shared on the Internet.

  • BYTES of the BIG APPLE. New York City Department of City Planning.

    BYTES of the BIG APPLE is a family of software, data and geographic base map files for the City of New York.

    PLUTO and MapPLUTO
    Zoning related datasets
    Waterfront related datasets
    Single Line Street base map dataset
    Administrative and Political boundaries
    Geocoding Application
    Other City Planning datasets

  • Visual Proof That Geographic Data Really Should Be Free, by Jenny Xie, The Atlantic Cities (Aug 14, 2013).

Roundup of New Resources and Other Government Info News (18 Items)

Hello From DC.

Here are some catchup items from the past couple of weeks that I was unable to get to when the stories were first posted over the past 10 days.

I’ve culled a selection of items from our INFOdocket.com site that we update seven days a week.

We hope you find them useful.

1. EPA Launches New Mapping Tool to Improve Public Access to Enforcement Information

2. Gov Docs: Enhancements Made to GPO’s MetaLib Federated Search Resource

3. Reference Resource: New Economic Indicator Database Search Available from Census Bureau

4. Canada: Government Documents: Library and Archives Canada Digitizes Past Issues of the Canada Gazette (1841-1997)
More than 150 years of content.

5. Privacy: Social Media: U.S. Congress Members Want FTC To Investigate Facebook Tracking
Includes link to full text of a letter sent to FTC.

6. Privacy: “WSJ.com Begins Tracking Personal User Information Without Consent”

7. Reference: New York City: “Detailed Crime Data Online” (New Database)

8. Online Civil War Era National Cemeteries Travel Itinerary Launched by the National Park Service

9. Recently Launched: PACER Training Site

10. A Collection of International Mobile Statistics from the ITU

11. Recently Released: Library of Congress Annual Report, FY 2010

12. Reference: Nuclear Energy: A New Science Tracer Bullet from the Library of Congress

13. New From CRS: Social Media and Disasters: Current Uses, Future Options, and Policy Considerations

14. NCES Releases Projections of Education Statistics to 2020

15. HHS Announces Text4Health Task Force Recommendations and Global Partnership

16. New CRS Report: Illegal Internet Streaming of Copyrighted Content: Legislation in the 112th Congress

17. U.S. Dept. of Energy Scientific Research Data Now Easier to Find, Datasets Now Being Registered with DataCite

18. Reference: USAID Releases Open Data and Maps on Famine in the Horn of Africa