In addition to Small Business Saturday, November 30 was also a critical deadline for DOT to reach some of the milestones in President Obama's Executive Order on Open Data. I'm happy to say that this Department has met its obligations.
But, more than just meeting our requirements, opening our data is about unleashing the power of information for public use.
The Federal Government collects and creates a vast amount of statistical, economic, financial, geospatial, regulatory, and scientific data, but much of it remains in unusable formats or trapped in government systems where it can't be accessed by the public. Even when it was technically available online, it could be hard to find...and even harder to use.
Over the past few years, the Obama Administration has launched a series of Open Data initiatives, which, for the first time in history, have released valuable data sets that were previously hard to access in areas such as safety, energy, and transportation.