Monthly Archives: December 2013

NY Innovates – Jim Hendler on The Big Problem in Open Data

During the recent NY Innovates conference in Albany, New York State’s Open Data Advisor, Dr. Jim Hendler, shared a story underscoring what he feels is the major problem with open data initiatives: getting data to users want it (and would understand it). Some time ago, as Dr. Hendler tells the story, he created a data […]

Praise for NY Innovates – NYS Rocking Open Health Data

Hats off to New York’s health and technology agencies, who joined the governor’s OpenNY initiative for this week’s successful NY Innovates app-building code-a-thon and forum on open health data. The well-attended event at RPI, in Troy, New York, brought together some of the top open data and technology innovators in government along with health professionals and […]

NY Innovates – Nirav Shah Highlights What’s Next for Open Health Data in New York State

At this week’s health data conference, NY Innovates, the keynote panel was headlined by some of New York State’s open data experts. Dr. Theresa Pardo, Dr. Nirav Shah, and Dr. Jim Hendler all shared their expertise during the panel, which was moderated by the Director of Open NY, Andrew Nicklin. During a discussion on the immediate […]

Cuomo Appoints Rachel Haot to New Digital Tech Post

Cheers to Governor Cuomo for creating the important new post of Deputy Secretary for Technology,  and appointing the dynamic Rachel Haot. Rachel was an energetic and innovative force as NYC Chief Digital Officer, and will have a critical portfolio leading the: “State’s digital experience across web, mobile and social media with a focus on streamlining […]

White House Plans Government-Wide Freedom of Information Act Website

Last week, President Obama announced the 2013 U.S. Open Government National Action Plan with input from the public, civil society, academia, and the private sector, with the intent of building on lessons learned from the first plan. The 2013 National Action Plan has 23 “commitments” or action items, and the third one is Modernize the Freedom of Information […]

Open Data Success Looks Like This

The New York Times reports hospital cost data that some of the data recently published by the State Health Department is wrong, but that revelation is a big win for Open NY, and health.data.ny.gov. This is exactly what should happen when important government data sets are published and scrutinized by the press and experts. All big […]

Open the Data Underneath NYPD’s New Crime Map

Earlier this week, the New York City Police Department launched the crime map mandated by Local Law 39 of 2013, which City Council passed in April. (See Reinvent Albany’s testimony.) It’s good that City Council required the police to produce more information for the public. The public is intensely interested in information about crime and […]

Times Uses Open Data, Finds Hospital Costs with “Enormous Markups”

In an article yesterday, the New York Times wrote about the NYS Department of Health’s newest dataset, hospital billing charges for medical procedures: As part of an effort to make health care pricing more transparent, the state is naming hospitals and listing their median charges and costs for 1,400 conditions and procedures from 2009 to 2011. […]

Money in Politics in NY: Dec. 9 Edition

Moreland Commission Endorses Public Financing of Elections On Monday, the Moreland Commission to Investigate Public Corruption released a preliminary report on its findings and recommendations regarding the state’s election, campaign finance, corruption, and transparency laws. Governor Andrew Cuomo appointed the commission in July following corruption scandals involving several legislators in Albany and the failure of the legislature […]

NY Times on Moreland Commission Report, Legalized Bribery

The Times editorial page has covered the Moreland Commission’s initial report on the pay-to-play culture in Albany: The panel deputized this summer to investigate corruption in Albany released its first report this week. It is, quite properly, scathing — a damning list of the ways that New York State politicians twist, abuse and sometimes break the law […]

Moreland Commission’s Scathing Report: $1 Billion in political spending in NYS since ’09

The language in the Moreland Commission’s report on legislative corruption is scathing, and validates what crusading journalists, watchdog groups and prosecutors have been saying for years: Albany is a place where laws are bought, and nothing will change until the “dysfunctional electoral and political systems ” are reformed.  The report calls for numerous sensible reforms […]