2013 International Open Data Day Hackathon: Hacking our way to good government


As a profession, hackers are getting a well-deserved image these days of leaks and invasion of privacy. Still, there are Good Hackers, those erstwhile folk who use their design, coding and analysis tools for good.

A stalwart cadre of hackers committed to open government are far from daunted by the bad press. Instead, capitalizing on the media blitz, these committed transparency advocates are going all out to hack for open government. They are currently at work on plans to sponsor the 2013 International Open Data Day Hackathon. It’s scheduled for Saturday, February 23, so there is not a moment to lose to envision, design, code and implement tomorrow’s tools of access..

The International Hackathon is a gathering of citizens in cities around the world whose goal is “to write applications, liberate data, create visualizations and publish analyses using open public data.” The intent is “to show support for and encourage the adoption of open data policies by the world’s local, regional and national governments.”

Local government info geek and their fans are at the ready. Open Twin Cities and Free Geek Twin Cities will host an open data Hackathon from 10:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. on February 23. The Hackathon action will be at 2537 25th Avenue South.

Local planners are sharing the word that “everybody is invited to help us build applications that curate and use Minnesota data, or to learn about open data and civic technologies.”

Anybody who is planning to participate in the local Hackathon should RSVP via Meeetup. Follow the planning discussion on the Open Twin Cities Google Group.

The promotion pitch is to anyone who has an idea for using open data, who wants to find an interesting project to contribute, learn about visualization or analyze data, or simply who wants to see what’s happening. Statisticians, librarians, designers, developers and members of the public are all invited. The promoters are an inclusive group, saying “we need ideas, cheerleaders, and friends to spread the word.”