The Open Knowledge Festival in Helsinki has been so far inspiring experience. There would be many new ideas to be reported and shared, but in short time I want to share one.
The Statistics Finland (national statistics authority) have started to share open source code in github! I met the developer Jussi Arpalahti who works for the statistics authority and he explained to me that the idea is to share code that facilitates the usage of already open statistical data. Statistics Finland is supporting this years Apps4Finland innovation contest. With published open source code examples and other tools they want to support the participants of the Apps4Finland as well as all other users of statistical data – says Arpalahti.
As far as I know this is the first time that some Finnish public sector body sets up a github repository and starts building a open source community. I would love to see more this kind of activity. It is not only about publishing open data, but also helping the people to put the data into action (see the theme of the OKfest – Open Knowledge in Action )
The first published python code anables easy access to the data resources that have been published and lisenced openly by Statistics Finland. At the moment those data sets are available only in PX -format, but soon there will be XDF (XML based standard for statistical information) and CSV -formats available. Available Data sets are also linked to the fi.datahub.org catalogue.
Futere plans are to enter more open code examples that use statistical data to the github repository. For example code that would do searches on the statistical data would certainly be useful. Arpalahti says: “I will provide some examples, but I would be happy to collaborate with others who are interested in using statistical data – the data is saved in multidimensional tables (multidimensional observation matrix) which are slightly more complex to handle”.
- Statistics Finland code repository in GitHub: https://github.com/statfi/opendata
- Statistics Finland Open Data resources: http://www.stat.fi/org/lainsaadanto/avoin_data_en.html
- Meta data at the fi.datahub -catalogue: http://fi.thedatahub.org/dataset/statfin-tilastotietokanta
- Material from the Stats4Finland workshop: http://apps4finland.fi/tapahtumat/stas4finland-tyopaja/