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CKAN Census 2014

Adrià Mercader - May 12, 2014 in Community, Deployments, Featured

Census!

 

Update: We have now also published a Deployment Survey to learn more about how CKAN is deployed and installed:

http://ckan.org/deployment-survey/


CKAN is used by hundreds of organizations across the world to publish their Open Data on-line. More and more CKAN sites are going live and CKAN is being used in many new ways, integrating with other tools and being extended with new features.

We want to get a clearer picture of the current CKAN ecosystem to better understand how CKAN is being used and help scope the project roadmap. And if at the same time we can bring the ckan.org instances page up to date all the better!

So if you are developing or managing a CKAN site or know someone who does, can you spend 5 minutes filling out this quick survey?

http://ckan.org/census

Any help in spreading out the link will be much appreciated as well. The results will make a big difference, and of course, they will be made available to the community later on.

This is the first in a series of surveys that will focus on different aspects of maintaining and using CKAN. In the following weeks we’ll send another one around focused on Deployment and Installation.

Let’s map CKAN usage across the world!

 

Photo by suziesparkle

 

Introducing the CKAN Association

Rufus Pollock - March 18, 2014 in Association, Community, Featured, News

We are pleased to announce the CKAN “Association”. The Association will manage and oversee the CKAN project going forward, supporting the growth of CKAN, its community and stakeholders. The Association reflects more than a year of discussion and consultation with key stakeholders and the wider community.

Key aspects of the Association are:

  • A Steering Group and Advisory Group which oversee the project and represent stakeholders.
  • Specific teams to look after particular areas such as a “Technical Team” to oversee technical development and a “Content and Outreach team” to oversee materials (including project website) and drive community engagement
  • Membership to allow stakeholders to contribute to the longer-term sustainability of the project – more below

The Association has its formal institutional home at the Open Knowledge Foundation but is autonomous and has its own independent governance, in the form the Steering Group which is drawn from major CKAN stakeholders. The Open Knowledge Foundation, who are the original creators of CKAN, continue to contribute to CKAN at all levels but the Association allows others – from government users to suppliers of CKAN services – to have a formal role in the development of CKAN project going forward.

Membership

The CKAN Association will have members. Membership is a way for individuals, companies and organisations to support the CKAN Project and be recognised for doing so. By becoming a member you are helping to ensure the long-term sustainability of CKAN.

Member organizations are expected to contribute resources – either through contributing money or providing in-kind resources such as staff time. Members receive recognition for their contribution through display on the website, participation in events etc.

You can find more information about membership here »

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Create the Association?

Over the last few years CKAN has seen rapid growth in terms of technology, deployments, and the community. It is now the basis of dozens of major sites around the world, including national data portals in the UK, US, Canada, Brazil, Australia, Germany, Austria and Norway. There also has been substantial growth in the developer and vendor community deploying, customising and working with CKAN.

We believe that, as with many open-source projects when they achieve a certain size, the time has come to bring some more structure to the community of CKAN developers and users. By doing so we aim to provide a solid foundation for the future growth of the project, and to empower more explicitly its growing array of stakeholders.

Will the CKAN Association be a Separate Legal Entity?

No, at least not initially. The association will retains its legal home at the Open Knowledge Foundation operating as a self-governed and autonomous project. If a strong need for a separate legal entity arises this is something that the Steering Committee will consider in due course.

How will the CKAN Association relate to the Open Knowledge Foundation’s technical consulting around CKAN?

These 2 activities will be strictly separated. The CKAN Services team at the Open Knowledge Foundation will no doubt participate in the CKAN Association as stakeholders similar to other organizations and groups but will have no special rights or privileges.

What “Assets” will the Association have responsibility for?

The Association will have responsibility for items such as:

  • The primary CKAN codebase
  • The CKAN project roadmap including overseeing and steering technical development of CKAN
  • Oversee and drive user and community engagement
  • The ckan.org website and any related media assets
  • Managing any project finances and resources (e.g. from membership fees)

Will the CKAN Association have dedicated staff?

We imagine that the CKAN Association may appoint dedicated staff on an as needed basis and where there are resources to do so (also note that Members may contribute in kind resources in the form of staff time). However, at least initially, the CKAN Association will not have dedicated staff but will have in-kind support time provided by the Open Knowledge Foundation and other key stakeholders.

Improvements to the CKAN Roadmap Process

Rufus Pollock - March 13, 2014 in Community, News, Roadmap

We have switched to a Github issue tracker for tracking and managing the ideas in the CKAN Roadmap (see also this pretty version).

As detailed previously we have a public process for managing the roadmap for CKAN.

This was being managed in Trello but is moving to a Github issue tracker.

We have also updated the Roadmap page to give more information about the Roadmap and how it works:

The Roadmap provides stakeholders in CKAN, including users, developers and vendors, with the ability to shape and understand the future technical path for CKAN. Specifically, the Roadmap provides for:

  • Suggesting new ideas and features for CKAN
  • Prioritizing these into a schedule for future work especially on “core” CKAN

We emphasize that ideas don’t just have to be about improvements to the core CKAN software – for example, the idea of creating a new phone app client for CKAN would be perfect thing to submit.

Lastly, we should emphasize that, of course, just because an item is in the ideas tracker does not mean it will get worked on. If you want a certain feature implemented then the best way to ensure that happens is to sponsor its development – get in touch for more information

Check out the Roadmap

New ideas and current roadmap itself are managed via an issue tracker on github.

Idea issue tracker along with instructions on now to make new suggestions »

Prettier column-based view of the ideas and roadmap »

Improve how the CKAN Community Works – Your Suggestions Wanted

Rufus Pollock - March 11, 2014 in Community

We want to collect ideas about how to improve how the CKAN Community works — whether that’s a change to the CKAN.org website, creating a new help forum or making it easier to locate relevant documentation.

A key first step is to identify and prioritize the needs of the Community.

That’s where we want your help! We’ve created a shared editable document where people can contribute their thoughts and idea on what is needed and how to provide it:

Shared Document for Our Ideas – Take a Look and Contribute Now »

Please jump in and add your suggestions and thoughts on what you most want (and how that could be provided).

Note: we are not looking for suggestions on how to improve the CKAN the software (if you have ideas there please see the Roadmap page)

2013 – A great year for CKAN

Darwin Peltan - December 20, 2013 in Recaps

2013 has seen CKAN and the CKAN community go from strength to strength. Here are some of the highlights.

February

May

June

July

August

  • CKAN 2.1 released with new capabilities for managing bulk datasets amongst many other improvements

September

October

  • Substantial new version of CKAN’s geospatial extension, including pycsw and MapBox integration and revised and expanded docs.

November

  • Future City Glasgow launch open.glasgow.gov.uk prototype as part of their TSB funded Future Cities Demonstrator programme

December

Looking forward

The CKAN community is growing incredibly quickly so we’re looking forward to seeing what people do with CKAN in 2014.

So if your city, region or state hasn’t already done so, why not make 2014 the year that you launch your own CKAN powered open data portal?

Download CKAN or contact us if you need help getting started.

CKAN meets The DataTank

Pieter Colpaert - December 18, 2013 in Extensions

Today, we at OKF Belgium are thrilled to announce a CKAN extension, integrating DataTank functionality into CKAN.

The DataTank is a data adapter for machine-readable data. It can take data in any of numerous formats, from a CSV file to a SPARQL endpoint, and create an HTTP interface on top of it. This interface is a REST API which lets you read the data in a different format, page it, and query it. The latest version of the DataTank was released two weeks ago.

We asked ourselves: what if we could combine its power with CKAN, a great data registry which stores metadata for all kinds of data (machine-readable or not), with great search functionality and integrated data storage? This new CKAN extension is the answer.

To use the extension, you need to be running both The DataTank and CKAN. When you add a JSON or XML resource (file) to CKAN, it will automatically be added to your DataTank instance, making it instantly usable by app developers. The DataTank also can also export metadata using DCAT.

We’re currently working on more, smarter integration of The DataTank into CKAN. We want to extend CKAN’s “add dataset” interface to allow the user to add extra information about a file (for example, whether there is a header in a CSV file), which will be added to the DataTank’s discovery document. All help is welcomed in developing this further! If you can code in Python, know how to create extra fields in CKAN and know how to call an HTTP API, you’ll love contributing.

In the longer term, the Datatank has some more features in the pipeline: reintroducing SPECTQL, a query language allowing API sources to be filtered and queried that was developed for an earlier version of TDT, having automatic mappings from machine-readable data of which the model is known to RDF using tdt/streamingrdfmapper, analytics on top of the usage, and so on.

We’d love for more people to get involved in the project. Here are some suggestions:

We look forward to hearing from you!

Please help to translate CKAN 2.2

Mark Wainwright - December 13, 2013 in Releases

Wondering how to spend the holiday season? How would you like to help to make the next version of CKAN available in more languages?

CKAN, the world’s leading open-source data portal software, is available in over 30 languages – mainly because of the work of volunteers helping to translate it. The next release will be CKAN 2.2. The strings to be translated for this version have now been uploaded to Transifex:

https://www.transifex.com/projects/p/ckan/resource/2-2/

If you can help with any of the translations, please head over there. If you’re not already on the translation team for your favourite language, you can sign up / log in to Transifex and visit the team page for details of how to join it.

The release won’t be finalised until the new year, so you have until 6 January to get it finished. Special kudos to the Danish team, who finished their translation before the announcement was made, only an hour and a quarter after the new strings were uploaded earlier today!

CKAN for research data management: a round-up from St Andrews

Mark Wainwright - November 28, 2013 in Deployments, News

A new blog post from Birgit Plietzsch at St Andrews University provides an interesting survey of projects using CKAN for research data management projects. St Andrews themselves have a pilot project in this area, and Dr Plietzsch had solicited input from other projects on the ‘ckan4rdm’ mailing list. The post summarises the responses she received.

It’s noticeable that there are now quite a few RDM projects using CKAN in production environments or in pilots, most of them newcomers since the CKAN4RDM workshop earlier this year. Another project in the area that didn’t make it into the St Andrews round-up is EDaWaX, subject of a recent post on this blog.

If you’re interested in using CKAN in a research data management setting it is worth joining the ckan4rdm list. (It is a low-traffic list), and maybe sending it a note introducing yourself and your plans in the area.

Business developer wanted for world leading open data publication software team

Gavin Chait - November 25, 2013 in Jobs

If you’re a business developer with some IT experience in the public sector who’d like to help build exciting open data projects then we’d love to hear from you.

The Open Knowledge Foundation is recruiting a full-time, UK-based, business developer with experience of IT project management to join our main Services infrastructure team to develop new market and sales opportunities in the public sector. Some project management will also be required to implement contracts.

Our team provides high quality professional and technical services to clients around the world to help achieve our vision of a world empowered by open knowledge. We implement this through support of infrastructure development and capacity-building for open knowledge data sites for governments, institutions and organisations.

CKAN, our open data publication platform, is an open source web-based software project written in Python. It allows users to submit, search for and find open data. CKAN is the catalogue behind the UK government’s data.gov.uk and the US data.gov. It also powers over 60 other data catalogues around the world.

If you have a background in IT, the public sector, and business development, with a keen interest in open data, and enjoy working on open-source products, we’d love to hear from you.

You’d be part of a team:

  • developing and concluding business opportunities for deploying and developing open data software infrastructure, training and consulting projects for governments and organisations;
  • developing and managing our network of professional services partners;
  • supporting project management and delivery of software deployments, training and consulting engagements.

Requirements

  • At least 2-3 years’ business development experience;
  • Self-management in a business development IT environment;
  • Business-to-business and / or public-sector business development experience;
  • Ability to write winning business proposals and RFPs;
  • Brilliant communication skills both verbal and written;
  • Some experience in IT project management;
  • Enthusiasm about open data and open knowledge.

How to apply

Email us at jobs@okfn.org with the subject line ‘Business Developer – CKAN/Services’, and a copy of your CV by 15 December 2013.

Being based in and around London would be a plus but we are happy to consider applications from elsewhere in the UK.

Remuneration is commensurate with ability and will be based on a target and commission.

About the Open Knowledge Foundation

The Open Knowledge Foundation is a multi-award winning community-based not-for-profit organisation. We build tools, provides advice and develops communities in the area of open knowledge: data, content and information which can be freely shared and used. We believe that by creating an open knowledge commons we can make a significant contribution to improving governance, research and the economy.

Our world-leading software platform, CKAN (http://ckan.org), is a powerful open source data management system that makes data accessible and usable – by streamlining publishing, sharing, finding and using data. As well as harvesting, cataloguing, and advanced searching, it can store data and provides rich data APIs, visualization and exploration tools. CKAN is aimed at data publishers (national and regional governments, companies and organizations) wanting to make their data open, available and usable.

We’re changing the world by promoting a global shift towards more open ways of working in government, arts, sciences and much more.

Senior Python developer wanted for world leading open data publication software team

Gavin Chait - October 28, 2013 in Jobs

If you are an outstanding Python web developer with sound JavaScript skills, a keen interest in Open Data, and enjoy working on open-source products, we’d love to hear from you.

The Open Knowledge Foundation is recruiting a senior full time Python web developer, primarily to work on CKAN, our open-source Open Data web portal. The successful applicant will also be required to develop JavaScript-based data visualisations and other data-driven services.

Our team provides high quality professional and technical services to clients around the world to help achieve our vision of a world empowered by open knowledge. We implement this through support of infrastructure development and capacity-building for open knowledge data sites for governments, institutions and organisations.

CKAN, our open data publication platform, is an open source web-based software project written in Python. It allows users to submit, search for and find open data. As well as powering the US government’s data.gov website, CKAN is also behind over 60 other data catalogues around the world.

You’d be involved in

  • Customising CKAN for different governments and organisations;
  • Helping develop new features for CKAN;
  • Working on other Python and JavaScript programming projects in the OKF.

Requirements

  • Web app development experience in Python and Javascript;
  • PostgreSQL, Linux, Git (essential);
  • Experience in Solr, Pylons, Bootstrap, jQuery or CSS a plus;
  • Enthusiasm about Open Source, Open Data and Open Knowledge.

The Open Knowledge Foundation is a virtual, distributed organisation with team members working remotely on four continents. The team meets occasionally through the year face-to-face, especially for strategic planning and review. This role is a remote / home-based working position, full-time and UK-based.

How to apply

Email us your CV and a cover letter describing your interest in this role to jobs@okfn.org, with the subject line “Senior python developer – CKAN/Services”, by 22nd November 2013.

About the Open Knowledge Foundation

The Open Knowledge Foundation (OKF) is an internationally recognized non-profit working to open knowledge and see it used to empower and improve the lives of citizens around the world. We build tools, provide advice and develop communities in the area of open knowledge: data, content and information which can be freely shared and used. We believe that by creating an open knowledge commons we can make a significant contribution to improving governance, research and the economy.

The last two years have seen rapid growth in our activities, increasing our annual revenue to £2m and our team to over 35 across four continents. We are a virtual organisation with the whole team working remotely, although we have informal clusters in London, Cambridge and Berlin.

The OKF is an international leader in its field and has extensive experience in building open source tools and communities around open material. The Foundation’s software development work includes some of the most innovative and widely acclaimed projects in the area. For example, its CKAN project is the world’s leading open source data portal platform – used by data.gov, data.gov.uk, the European Commission’s open data portal, and numerous national, regional and local portals from Austria to Brazil. The award winning OpenSpending project enables users to explore over 13 million government spending transactions from around the world. It has an active global network which includes Working Groups and Local Groups in dozens of countries – including groups, ambassadors and partners in 21 of Europe’s 27 Member States.

We’re changing the world by promoting a global shift towards more open ways of working in government, arts, sciences and much more.