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California Launches Data Repository Web Site

State CIO Teri Takai encourages citizens to utilize the data creatively.

by / July 2, 2009

California launched a new online data repository on Thursday that makes state data files, databases, geographic data and other sources easier to find, state CIO Teri Takai announced Tuesday.

According to a press release, the data site provides access to numerous data sets, such as:

  • vital statistics such as population, birth, death, and marriage data;
  • more than 50 million data records on education;
  • imports and exports coming through California ports,
  • traffic counts on state highways;
  • driving statistics, fatalities, accidents and injuries;
  • travel and tourism;
  • water data; and the
  • Cal-Atlas Web site, which provides geospatial data and allows others to contribute their geospatial data.

The data are provided in different formats: CSV, XLS, KML, TXT and XML.

"Governor Schwarzenegger has made open government and accountability a top priority," said Takai in a prepared statement. "This new centralized data repository allows the public to find, use and repackage the volumes of data generated by the state, which were previously hard to find in various places throughout government. By publishing in different formats, we are empowering the public to use government data in creative ways to help improve our great state."

California becomes the third state-level government to launch a data portal, following the District of Columbia and Utah.

Last week the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) announced a partnership with the Office of Management and Budget and federal CIO Vivek Kundra to encourage all 50 states to build their own repositories for public data. California looks forward to participating with NASCIO on the issue, said Bill Maile, the spokesman of the state's Office of the Chief Information Officer.

California's data repository is integrated into the redesigned CA.gov, which was overhauled to feature more social media and social networking on the state's main Web portal.

Matt Williams Associate Editor