This week we released a refreshed version of OpenDataCommunities, DCLG’s linked open data site. It’s now stylistically more in line with the department’s gov.uk presence, plus we’ve added a blog and upgraded the data platform to the latest version of our PublishMyData platform, making it easier to access and use the data you want.

Some of the main changes are around navigation. The homepage now displays the latest datasets from the data catalogue and the most recent blog posts. We’ve also introduced new top-level navigation across the whole site, so you can quickly select the section most relevant to your visit.

OpenDataCommunities Tabs

The News tab takes you to the site’s new blog where you can browse by article, tags or author. DCLG are keen to explore new ways of communicating with users, so the blog includes a commenting feature and social media links.

The Data tab naturally provides access to the data catalogue - now running on PublishMyData version 2 - which includes a bunch of new features for data users. One of the features we’re most excited about is expert mode, which our CTO, Ric, recently wrote about on the OpenDataCommunities blog.

There are improvements on the Apps section too: We’ve rewritten the deprivation and wellbeing mappers to use OpenStreetMap map tiles instead of Google Maps. And given some of the other tools such as the Spreadsheet builder (previously know as the stats selector) a bit of an update too.

Deprivation Mapper

This relaunch helps DCLG to publish and present their data in a more accessible way than ever before (read what they say about it here). As it’s backed by our new version of PublishMyData, it benefits from improved data browsing - particularly for expert data users who want to use the APIs. And updated mappers set the scene for the next stage of the project which includes more map-based visualisations. Watch this space!

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