Feeds

Osborne to SAVE ECONOMY with help from Media 2.0 websluts

Open data mashups, that's exactly what UK needs

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Analysis Since the Tories came to power courtesy of a Coalition deal with the Lib Dems in May 2010, two words continue to be bounced around the walls of Whitehall: open and transparency.

Later today, Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne will detail his painful plans to grow Britain's deflated economy. His autumn statement to the House of Commons follows on from an OECD report on Monday that said it expected UK output to continue to fall in the final three months of this year and the first quarter of 2012, prompting fears of a double-dip recession.

Number 11's occupant will doubtless want to be drowning out concerns expressed by the economy's worrywarts. And what better way to do that, the argument from within the Cabinet Office goes at least, than to open up some more datasets to British citizens.

Apparently Blighty is about to become the open data centre of the world and citizens in their frayed trousers and greying shirts should be upstanding and proud.

The chancellor will reveal the latest chapter in this, er, success story that plants the Silicon Roundabout in the middle of the government's Media2.0Websluts-will-save-us-all-parade by promising to make travel easier, healthcare better and to bring about jobs growth. How will all this happen, you might wonder? Why, by opening up more public sector data, of course.

Here's a quick rundown of what The Register understands taxpayers should expect to hear from Osborne at lunchtime today.

Code, boy, as if your life depended on it the Met Office

Investment in medical research and in digital technology is incoming and, as Prime Minister David Cameron made clear earlier this month, the government is placing large bets on Silicon Roundabout, which means Downing Street eventually wants to see East London produce a Skype or even an Apple.

What this appears to boil down to is a startup developing apps that make use of those lovely datasets that Osborne is about to set "free".

Who knows, the Silicon Roundabout could yet give birth to a company that Microsoft might eventually want to buy. Or, more ambitiously, the very same "tech hub" could debut a fondleslab powerhouse of which none other than Steve Jobs RIP would be envious.

Data from the Met Office and the Land Registry, it's hoped, will lead the way.

In essence, some of our data is being offloaded to the private sector to help boost the frankly dire economy. Osborne's mantra actually appears to be: "There's an app for that".

It might be argued that the chancellor is being deadly strategic with his plans. Medical research could be improved via this method, courtesy of what the Cabinet Office is describing as a "world-first data service".

There are also plans to improve business logistics and commuting by introducing realtime monitoring of trains and buses on almost every road in the UK.

All well and good, perhaps. But an internet veteran is required to do a lot of the hand-holding with the 600 or so hairdressers, bars and actual startups that now occupy the Silicon Roundabout.

It would seem those same outfits won't be getting their hands on the very grown up healthcare datasets to be released by the government, which we are assured contain "detailed" yet "anonymised information on patients".

For now, Osborne and co wants Tech City - as Whitehall prefers to call it - to concentrate on the weather, house prices and transport to help kickstart the economy. Some of that data will be released under free licence terms, while others will need to be unlocked by developers who first agree to the "conditions" laid out in the Open Government Licence under commercial re-use.

Stay tuned. We'll have more for you later today. ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.