Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/11/11/agimo_spring_cleans_datagovau_and_finds_a_third_was_junk/

AGIMO spring cleans data.gov.au and finds a THIRD was JUNK

Hurrah for open government, where 200 files = 200 datasets until someone notices

By Simon Sharwood

Posted in Policy, 11th November 2013 22:34 GMT

Australia's Government Information Management Office (AGIMO) has spring cleaned data.gov.au and let us all know that it has found, and disposed of, a colossal pile of junk.

Data.gov.au was recently migrated to the CKAN open source data portal platform. During that process, AGIMO says the number of data sets available to the public fell from 1200 to 500.

The reason? During the migration “We unfortunately found that a third of the 'datasets' were just links to webpages or files that either didn’t exist anymore, or redirected somewhere not useful to genuine seekers of data.”

AGIMO's also 'fessed up to the fact that “the original 1200 number included each individual file … In one case we have a dataset with 200 individual files where before it was counted as 200 datasets.”

Is your palm on your face now?

Another reason for the fall is that State and Territory outposts of data.gov.au are picking up the slack and pinching some datasets to host on their own sites.

To summarise: a third of the stuff on data.gov.au was junk, plenty more was poorly-described and lots of the data it hosts has now been scattered to other sites that reference each other poorly, if at all.

If your palm face wasn't in your face before, is it now? ®