Polytechnic

The personal brain-dump of Garrett Coakley

The Zen of Open Data


  • Open is better than closed.
  • Transparent is better than opaque.
  • Simple is better than complex.
  • Accessible is better than inaccessible.
  • Sharing is better than hoarding.
  • Linked is more useful than isolated.
  • Fine grained is preferable to aggregated.
  • (Although there are legitimate privacy and security limitations.)
  • Optimise for machine readability — they can translate for humans.
  • Barriers prevent worthwhile things from happening.
  • “Flawed, but out there” is a million times better than “perfect, but unattainable”.
  • Opening data up to thousands of eyes makes the data better.
  • Iterate in response to demand.
  • There is no one true feed for all eternity — people need to maintain this stuff.



The Zen of Open Data by Chris McDowall