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Data as a Service: Blog Post

Data.gov Will Redefine Data-as-a-Service

We need to keep in mind that Data.gov is still a concept now

I’ve been in several meetings recently that have hit on the topic of Data.gov.  Data.gov will become a repository for all the information the government collects, and that information will be in turn available to anyone who needs it.   Pretty positive move, if you ask me.   However, the existing data-as-a-service providers that traffic in government data could find that they are soon suffering from relevancy problems. 

The core issue is that many existing data-as-a-service players make their living from publishing reconstituted, and cleansed, government data that they charge for.    The rise of Data.gov will mean the commoditization of this information, which will be accessible, both through visual interfaces, and using APIs (Web services), if I understand the government’s vision here. 

Thus, overnight Data.gov could become the mother of all data-as-a-service sites, providing gigabytes of government data to anyone who would need it, for any purpose.    The ability to mashup this data with existing business systems, or validate business information are just a few of the high-value applications, and I suspect I’m only scratching the surface.      

I predict that a cottage industry of startups will surround Data.gov, typically around managing the interfaces, but the source of the content will shift from the data-as-a-service providers to the government.  Moreover, the business intelligence applications that you could place on top of this data would be extremely valuable to both commercial and government organizations.  

We need to keep in mind that Data.gov is still a concept now, and it will take some time before the slow gears of the government launch the first instance of Data.gov.   However, just the concept is a game changer, and we’ll have to see if the offering has the proposed value.

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David Linthicum is the Chief Cloud Strategy Officer at Deloitte Consulting, and was just named the #1 cloud influencer via a recent major report by Apollo Research. He is a cloud computing thought leader, executive, consultant, author, and speaker. He has been a CTO five times for both public and private companies, and a CEO two times in the last 25 years.

Few individuals are true giants of cloud computing, but David's achievements, reputation, and stellar leadership has earned him a lofty position within the industry. It's not just that he is a top thought leader in the cloud computing universe, but he is often the visionary that the wider media invites to offer its readers, listeners and viewers a peek inside the technology that is reshaping businesses every day.

With more than 13 books on computing, more than 5,000 published articles, more than 500 conference presentations and numerous appearances on radio and TV programs, he has spent the last 20 years leading, showing, and teaching businesses how to use resources more productively and innovate constantly. He has expanded the vision of both startups and established corporations as to what is possible and achievable.

David is a Gigaom research analyst and writes prolifically for InfoWorld as a cloud computing blogger. He also is a contributor to “IEEE Cloud Computing,” Tech Target’s SearchCloud and SearchAWS, as well as is quoted in major business publications including Forbes, Business Week, The Wall Street Journal, and the LA Times. David has appeared on NPR several times as a computing industry commentator, and does a weekly podcast on cloud computing.