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Every Australian address - yes yours, and even yours – just became open data

Don't panic! It's just the anonymised national address database under an open licence

Australia's government has delivered on a promise to release the Geocoded National Address File (G-NAF) as open data.

The 13-million-strong database of physical addresses, complete with latitude and longitudes, hit the web on Monday. The data is anonymous: while your house or place of business is almost certainly listed, your name's not tied to it in any way.

The data was once sold by an entity called PSMA Australia Limited, an unlisted public company formed by the nine governments of Australia. PSMA is still around and is building new data sets like the forthcoming Geoscape product that aims to record “3D building attributes, land cover, tree heights, and elevation” and even “features such as roof materials, swimming pools and solar panels.”

Releasing G-NAF was a pet project for once-communications-minister now prime minister Malcolm Turnbull, who feels that open data is a good thing.

Buy some more RAM if you want to play with G-NAF: it's a five-gigabyte download and offers over 40 fields should you choose to create a database, as recommended in the dataset's Getting Started Guide (PDF).

If you do create a database, let us know if the database is any good: nbnTM claimed the poor quality of G-NAF was one reason it ran late on its fibre-to-the-premises build, a claim PSMA denied. ®

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