Heading to OpenGovWest this week. I have been working on Open Data ideas for several months and have been watching the amazing progress the Sunlight Foundation has been making over the years. Although I instinctively know that Open Data is the way of the future and that it will radically transform how governments at all levels operate (for the better) I still have trouble articulating that to others in tangible ways. A worthy quest. I will attend the conference this week to see if I can become more eloquent in describing the value that open data offers so that I can do my part here in BC to enroll others in the opportunity of open up BC data.
I suppose that ferreting out the business models for open data will take a while. Look how long it took us to figure out how to make money from open source. Learning from open source though, one can imagine, that the viable business models around open data, won't be around distributing the open data. The winners will be the folks who can add value to that data, to make that data consumable to others who can get more value from that data. And that means understanding the data and the technology required to manipulate it.
So, in other words, it's a good time to be a geek.