The new Yale-NUS College in Singapore wants students to have a liberal arts experience that stands out in the region. The IT team running the college’s systems need to find novel ways to enable new digital solutions. Here’s why the colleges is working with open source provider Red Hat to find the solutions. Yale-NUS wants to minimise wastage and increase flexibility, and run as a “lean institution”, Darwin Gosal, Senior Manager for IT Infrastructure and Services, told FutureGov.
Hong Kong has revamped its open data portal, changing its name from Data.One to Data.Gov.HK. The data catalogue is now easier to search with new filters for government departments, data categories and formats. Users can also chart and map data on the web site itself for a preliminary analysis of the datasets before downloading them. The web site features a new look, with large, minimalist icons of data categories on the home page.
The Australian federal government is joining up with state governments to ensure that public datasets are available on the national portal. This month, it announced that South Australian open data will be available on the national portal, while the state portal will also provide access to national datasets. “Users of data.sa.gov.au and data.gov.au will be able to find data resources from either portal using a single search. Now, users of the portals will have over 5,700 datasets and their fingertips,” blogged Allan Barger of the data.gov.au team.
Malaysia has urged its civil servants to use social media to help people understand government policies, especially new ones. “It is important to use all available communication, especially Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, to create better understanding of the government transformation agenda, especially the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax in April,” said Datuk Ibrahim Abdul Rahman, Director General, Department of Information.
The University of Technology, Sydney (UTS) in Australia used Red Hat’s cloud-based app development and hosting platform OpenShift, resulting in shorter time taken to deploy web applications and less day-to-day management for the university’s IT team. The platform improved students’ experience by shortening the time taken to develop applications so they could focus on their course content, instead of dealing with IT complexities.
Thailand is getting ready for a new digital economy, looking to provide more citizens with internet access and online services. This week FutureGov is featuring open data from data.go.th, the country’s open data portal, showing ICT use by Thai households and how many people are using the internet.
The Australian Government will launch a “comprehensive” survey to assess which datasets are most valuable to businesses and researchers, Malcolm Turnbull, Australian Communications Minister has announced this week. In partnership with New York University’s GovLab, the federal government will look at organisations that use public datasets “to generate new business, develop new products and services or create social value,” he said.
NEW DELHI: Terming India as an important player in internet governance, telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad today said the future architecture of the web should not be a prerogative of a few and should be open to all. “India is an important player on international stage of internet governance. I am happy that USA has decided that the entire oversight mechanism must end by September 2015 or year end,” Prasad said during an Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers event here.
Telstra will allow its customers to access the metadata the telco stores on them for a fee ranging upwards from $25. Telstra’s announcement follows a recommendation made last Friday by the parliamentary committee tasked with investigating the Government’s data retention scheme. In the committee’s final report on the data retention bill last week, it said individuals should be able to access their own metadata retained under the scheme.
Singapore’s Statistics department has released 5000 new datasets on the government’s open data portal data.gov.sg this week. This is “in line with the government’s intention to make more data available to the public as we build a Smart Nation”, the Department said in a statement. The new datasets cover 123 topics across two broad themes – population and economy.
Western Australia has released a draft of its open data policy, urging agencies to be “open by default”. The government should prioritise releasing datasets that are already available in public, in demand or are have high-value for citizens, says the policy which will be implemented by geospatial agency Landgate. The government doesn’t want agencies to be discouraged by a need to release perfect datasets.
Bangalore city in India is developing a geographic information system (GIS) with 150 layers of information on transport, health, safety and utilities. The project, known as Bangalore Spatial Info Centre, was initiated by a committee set up to recommend changes to Bangalore’s administrative structure. The restructure and operation of the city have to be driven by data, said V Ravichandar, former Commissioner of the Bangalore Municipal Corporation and a member of the committee.
Malaysia’s ‘Truly Asia’ campaign is well known across the region, and this year the country expects over 29 million people to visit the country. FutureGov has taken a look at the open data on tourist arrivals to Malaysia. The data from the Immigration Department and Tourism Malaysia has important economic implications for the government as well as owners of businesses which thrive on tourism.
The West Australian government has moved to crack down on so-called backdoor use of a government system by Australia’s biggest miners to access data on exploration licences. WA minister for mines and petroleum Bill Marmion said the government would launch a new online system to provide equal and free access to data on mining tenements, or exploration licenses, to all interested companies.
17 per cent of staff at Housing NSW were nearing retirement age, and with only 22 per cent of staff aged 35 or under – managers knew that they needed to address the ticking time bomb. An ageing workforce came at a tricky time for Housing NSW. Many of the issues it deals with are growing in complexity – with changing population pressures within the state, such as fast-growing Sydney and coastal towns, and a depopulating rural hinterland.
A government launches a new portal for people to get their social security benefits, but it’s not able to cope with the sheer number of people trying access it at the same time, and crashes. What can governments do to prevent such disappointment with public services? Red Hat explains. Cloud technologies can give governments the flexibility to keep up with the rising expectations citizens have of them, believes Bryan Che, General Manager, Cloud Product Strategy for Red Hat. “If I become wildly successful because a lot of users coming in, I can scale up to meet my demand,” he said.
Some open datasets are great because they provide a new level of access to government. Others are worthy simply because of the richness and utility of the data. This week’s open dataset of the week comes from Hong Kong, which has released data that doesn’t make the government more transparent, but does greatly assist citizens. Hong Kong publishes a dataset showing traffic speed across the city.
New Zealand has the most transparent government in Asia Pacific, according to a new report that studied global access to public sector data. The World Wide Web Foundation has ranked countries according to three criteria: the existence of key datasets; whether these datasets are published; and the impact that open data has had on a country. The United Kingdom was top, while New Zealand scored best in the region – and fourth overall.
A newly released mobile app by the New Zealand government is expected to enable students compare job prospects and incomes of 50 different careers and help them make good study choices. The 2015 Occupation Outlook app was launched with third annual Occupation Outlook report that pulls together the latest information from employers, industries, the education sector and the labour market.
Malaysia’s weather agency launched its first mobile app early this year. FutureGov has reviewed the app and spoke with the team on their new service. The myCuaca app has a simple user interface with familiar icons on the homepage. It shows the weather at your current location and gives a forecast for the coming week. It also has a weather map with forecasts of all Malaysian cities.