Earlier this month, Mayor Emanuel and Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan visited toured Chicago’s tech centers, including 1871 and UI Labs to look at Chicago’s startup culture and data-driven innovation. Chicago and London signed a data alliance for “bi-lateral relationship to enable the exchange of knowledge and expertise with the intention of driving expanded growth and opportunity for all people in the two cities.” The two cities will sharing solutions to avoid duplication and share ideas on how to use data within large cities.

White House highlights Chicago data and technology initiatives

  • Array of Things are being installed across Chicago to collect environmental, noise, density and other data that is designed to improve the city and is limited to protect individual privacy. The data will be made publicly available online. You can now follow along when new nodes are installed on the open data portal. See a map of new locations.
  • Digging for the next innovation! An underground utility is struck every 60 seconds in the United States, causing billions in damage. Chicago partnered with UI Labs’ City Digital and a consortium to build and pilot new technology to scan and map underground infrastructure. Take a look at the video to show how this information can be browsed in the future.

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  • The White House highlighted Array of Things and the Underground Mapping project as examples of innovative programs as part of their $80 million expansion of investments in the Smart Cities Initiative.

Redesigned websites ready for public feedback

Screenshot of the new open data portal

  • Chicago’s Annual Financial Analysis report went digital for the first time this year. The report was assembled using open source and available tools, suck as Jekyll and GitHub, forgoing more costlier methods.
  • Chicago has released a half-dozen APIs in the past 5 years. A beta of a new developer portal is now available to connect developers and researchers with documentation and updates to those services. You can reach out to developers@cityofchicago.org to provide your thoughts.

Open Data Portal continues to expand

  • Dozens of new education-related data sets are on the open data portal. See maps of school locations for the past 10 years, school profiles, and much more.
  • Business Activity codes — which describe what a business does — has been added to the open data portal’s Business Licenses data set.

Chicago is leveraging open data as part of it’s predictive analytics

Chicago’s Chief Data Officer spoke with Manhattan Institute’s Aaron Renn on the intersection of open data and predictive analytics in a recent podcast:

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Banner image “Great Lakes in Sunglint” by NASA (c) 2012 and licensed under Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial 2.0 (CC BY-NC 2.0)

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