Nova Scotia launches open data portal

The Nova Scotia government has becomes the latest to make some of the raw data it collects available to the public.

'It's driven by the belief that government data belongs to the people'

A wide variety of information that ranges from historical land grants to traffic volumes to angling and absenteeism records will be available online. (Jonathan Hayward/Canadian Press)

The Nova Scotia government has joined the world of open data. 

On Friday, it officially launched a web portal that allows the public to access 137 different sets of raw data.

It's a wide variety of information that ranges from historical land grants to traffic volumes to angling and government employee absenteeism records. The information can be sorted and graphed.

Premier Stephen McNeil helped launch the site.

"Open data is about making government data available to anyone to use and reuse for any purpose," he said. "It's driven by the belief that government data belongs to the people."

Bill Wilson, CEO of Mindsea, said companies such as his that design apps will be able to use the information to make decisions.

"Say traffic volumes on a particular street," he said. "If they're going to build a new retail outlet. Is that traffic volume increasing year over year? Should we open up there?"

"I think there's definitely a lot of the data sets that are available in the new open data portal that will be really useful," he said.

About the Author

Jean Laroche

Reporter

Jean Laroche has been a CBC reporter for 32 years. He's been covering Nova Scotia politics since 1995 and has been at Province House longer than any sitting member.

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