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Revamped Data.gov Includes API Catalog

BY Miranda Neubauer | Thursday, May 23 2013

(Source: Data.gov)

Federal officials are now offering a list of all APIs that have been released across the federal government as part of the Digital Government Strategy and a new data catalog that allows users to more easily search, sort and tag datasets, according to a post by Hyon Kim, deputy program director at the U.S. General Services Administration.

With the announcements, the team behind Data.gov, a central public repository of machine-readable federal government data, is marking its fourth anniversary and the one year anniversary of the release of the Digital Government Strategy.

In the post, Kim writes that the ability of developers to access all government APIs in one place, with links to documentation and other resources, will help spur the development of apps in a wide range of areas such as health, public safety, education and consumer protection.

The new catalog, which also allows users to find all datasets for a particular location, is accessible on an open source data management system called CKAN. "Data.gov now has one unified data catalog based on an open source standard that will make it easier to federate with other federal agency catalogs, as well as those of states, cities, and counties," Kim writes.

She explains that the catalog will help with the implementation of the government's Open Data Policy, since it can easily incorporate the data inventories that federal agencies will be creating under the policy. "The result will be an easy-to-use, comprehensive catalog that will allow citizens, developers and others to fully take advantage of the vast array of federal data that affects the daily lives of citizens," she writes.

She also adds that new tools released on the Project Open Data platform will help agencies meet the policy's requirement, and lay the foundation for a new Data.gov infrastructure across government.

Developers can follow the process at the Project Open Data repository on GitHub.

White House CIO Steven Van Roekel and White House CTO Todd Park also marked the anniversary of the Digital Government Strategy in a blog post.