Top Mobile Apps for Local Governance and Planners

A recent survey of planners by Planetizen looked at mobile app that enhance public participation in local governance and planning to improve efficiency and data collection for planners. A number of fine productivity tools were mentioned in the findings, many of them can possibly be useful to some of you I’m sure! From the results…  common apps mentioned include such apps as Todoist, Constant Contact, Mediafire, GoogleMapsDropboxArcGISGoToMeeting, and SlideShark, among others. Planners report regularly using Trulia and Zillow, which are helpful in finding information about properties.

social cyclist

Social Cyclist app for improving your community

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Open Government Tour 2014 #OGT14 Hits Victoria BC to Stimulate OpenData Dialog #opengov

A topic that is hugely hot these days, particularly with the GeoTech crowd, is Open Data. I spent an evening in the meeting chambers at our local City Hall discussing OpenData with about 2 dozen other geeks with nothing better to do on a Monday night. The event was planned by and run by opendata enthusiast and co-founder of CitizenBridge, Richard Pietro and brought together about 10 very knowledgeable speakers and enthusiasts to share their stories and advice. The tour, which is supported by sponsorship from the Microsoft  backed Open Source project, Make Web not War, is designed to ignite the open government conversation in areas that may not have had the chance to experience the conversation – that may not be the case in Victoria BC but it is always a great idea to re-ignite the discussion.

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Esri Connecting Citizens and business With Open Data

Recall it was in February (seems ages ago!) when Esri’s Andrew Turner (@ajturner) lifted the lid off the Esri Open Data initiative,  and effort to help Governments meet their mandate to be more transparent and serve the public with more open data – enter ArcGIS Open Data. I’m a huge fan of such efforts, mainly as they support Governent’s true mandate of serving the public and acting as the platform for innovation!



See more in this blog post from Esri

For all the deets direct from Esri see this resource devoted to ArcGIS Open data

Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority (MBTA) Opens Real Time Transit Data to the Public

An interesting story via the O’reilly Radar touching on the City of Boston and how the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority (MBTA) made real time data available to the public (and perhaps more important, to developers), spurring a ton of innovation from mobile app developers as is evident from the MBTA application showcase page  at http://www.mbta.com/rider_tools/apps/ – see also the Mass Transit app from Sparkfish creative. For more on the story of open transit data in Boston see the article Boston’s real-time transit data: “Better than winning the World Series