All posts by nolewalkingshaw

Open Salt Lake presents a community driven data competition

flyer.for-print-01_1024In honor of National Day of Civic Hacking (NDoCH), Open Salt Lake is bringing together the local technology community to launch Code Utah, a summer-long event to combine “Learning, Coding, and building a better Utah.”

Easily finding and using public data is a core principle of 21st Century government. Our goal is to take public data from Utah’s new open data portal ( and make it actionable, addressing local needs through visualizations, new apps, and tools for the community. More than 1300 datasets are currently hosted on the portal and the State has committed to finding and posting any other public data that developers want to use throughout the Summer Open Data Drive.

We will launch, in conjunction with NDoCH at ImpactHub SLC (, on Saturday, June 6th. The launch party will introduce participants to the open data available and groups will start forming to explore ways that open data and technology can improve issues ranging from health to food access to education to climate change. Over the course of the summer, there will be many learning opportunities and teams will work on digital solutions that use open data, culminating in a juried demo day and hack session in late August with prizes and awards in a range of categories. Join Open Salt Lake in placing open data in the hands of developers and communities to drive toward greater impact.

Register on Meetup

Can’t make the event ? Have an Idea for a team to work on?

This event is just the beginning and we know that not everyone will be able to make it. So as we develop our teams we will be organizing team support  where you can register or join a team.

Ideas are the seeds for projects and we have an an Ideas Page where you can look for a project, add an idea of your own. Please comment on and ideas by adding thoughts on how to build it, identify data sources or just register your support.

2015 Multi-City Innovation Campaign has launched

Deadline Extended to April 10, 2015

Are you a developer, entrepreneur, or designer looking to impact your community?  

Help create the next generation of health technology.   Salt lake City has partnered with the National League of Cities on this year’s national effort and need your ideas and participation to create the next big technology that promotes healthy communities.

Twenty-five leading local and state governments across the country are partnering to prove that cities and regions can work together in a new way to work with developer, creative, and entrepreneurial communities to improve public and community health and spur quality innovation.  Each city will pay $5,000 to the developer team, if it chooses to deploy the new technology in their community, for a total of up to $120,000.

Jumpstart Foundry, one of the country’s leading health technology startup accelerators, is partnering with the cities and regions to launch the next game-changing, sustainable, and scalable technology.  The accelerator program has committed to reserving a finalist spot from the MCIC program to be considered for its flagship summer 2015 cohort in Nashville, TN, with available seed capital of up to $100,000.

Developers can submit their ideas at by April 10!

Code for America Summit 2014

The  2014 Code for America Summit was September 22-25, 2014. Code for America is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco , Code for America believes government can work for the people, by the people in the 21st century. This was the fourth year of the Summit, and the event’s growth, energy and spirit of collaboration reflected the mood of the civic tech movement.  There’s great progress being made – and so much more to be done! Watch CfA founder Jen Pahlka’s welcome keynote, where she sums up where the organization is headed.

It was quite the 3 days:

Here is a sample of a few presentations which I thought were especially good, but check out the list to see if one speaks to you:

Digital Government: Not Complicated, Just Hard

Challenge and Partnership: Government IT and Civic Tech

Designing For and With People: Building a Digital Front Door

The Responsive City (This presentation discusses a future where fiber is the norm)

Thank you everyone who supports the Open Salt Lake Brigade this is an exciting time to get involved with your local government and realize that government can work for the people, by the people in the 21st century.

Air Quality Challenge

Summer is coming to an end and the OpenSL Brigade is back in action! On Monday August 18th we had a lunch Meet-up where Nick and Pat from Big Data Utah gave us an introduction to the Air Quality Competition (deadline 10/1). The Brigade is supporting this effort by opening up our Civic Data site as a hosting environment for the data sets, our forum page for ideation and spreading the word across our network. We are also excited to have some new people join us — Mat White, Drew Mingle and Pam Bradford. Thank you!

The Air Quality Competition rules will be announced later this week so check in with the Big Data Utah for the most current information.  The next OpenSL Meet-up will be Tuesday, 8/26 via Hangout.  Join Us!

Summer Vacation and a New Captain


It’s summer and everyone is out of town or riding their bike, so we are going to take some time off and start up our Meet-ups again in August.  Our next Meet-up will be on Tuesday August 5th at 7:30 . We will also put an end of summer event together more to come on that.

We also have a new Captain Mark Parthum! Kris Trujillo is stepping down to try and keep up with all demands of being a big wig software director. But he will still be apart of the brigade and support us with our Open Data Catalogue.


National Day of Civic Hacking 2014

Hack for Change SLC is a hybrid meet-up, hackathon, data jam event as part of the National Day of Civic Hacking.  Salt Lake is one of 97 participating sites around the world.
  • Learn about open data and what you can do with it to solve civic problems.
  • Share your ideas about how to make Salt Lake better.
  • Meet people and forge new partnerships.
  • Be part of a national movement!
Pizza and drinks provided.
The National Day of Civic Hacking is an international event that brings together citizens, software developers, and entrepreneurs to collaboratively create, build, and invent new solutions using publicly-released data, code, technology, and community organizing strategies to improve our communities and the governments that serve them.  Anyone can participate; you don’t have to be an expert in technology, you just have to care about your neighborhood and community.
Follow the national event on Twitter and Instagram at #hackforchange

Registration and Details


Impact HubSalt Lake
44 Exchange Pl
Salt Lake City, UT 84111

Friday, May 30, 2014 from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM (PDT)



Coming Soon!
Sponsored by:
CfA_logo    LQprint_transparent     

Open Salt Lake’s Contribution to the Local Open Data Census

We need some help!

During the Code Across Event on February 21st the Brigade worked to complete the Open Knowledge Foundations US Cities Open Data Census . We are now left with this great resource and wondering what to do.  We need someone or many to begin creating links to the data we discover and begin adding these sets to the Open Salt Lake Civic Data Site

While this work is underway we will begin building a new page on our site where the community can begin posting maps and data visualizations of our community data.

For data visualization inspiration check out


Open Salt Lake’s Code Across

The Code Across event for Open Salt Lake was productive. We worked on two projects, the US Cities Open Data Census and the Salt Lake City open Data Policy. These two projects complimented each other as we went through the census exercise searching for data sets we were able to identify the strengths and weaknesses.  We discussed and reviewed the draft open data policy and noted places where Salt Lake City may be able to strengthen their open data portal.

To view the census click here to review the draft open data policy click here.

We talked about building upon our ideas site and the need to recruit new ideas or to see if we can get someone working on the ones we have. Please take a look at our Ideas Page and offer up a comment or suggestion or hey take on one of the great ideas already there.

To get involved or just keep an eye on the chatter join our Google group!forum/openslc.

Open Salt Lake Brigade Code Across 2014 at Westminster

On the weekend of February 21-23, Code for America, the Open Knowledge Foundation and the Sunlight Foundation will host 40+ events around the globe known as CodeAcross.

Open Salt Lake is part of the Code for America Brigade network and will be hosting this event as part of Code Across. Join us as we take part in three challenges put forth by Code for America surrounding Open Data.

The Open Data Inventory Challenge – Take stock of where your city stands on publishing some fundamental data sets.

Open Data Policy Challenge – Work with your local officials to create an open data policy, or draft an implementation plan or accountability structure for a recently passed policy.

Open Civic Data Scraper Challenge – Create scrapers to pull down important civic information to feed the Open Civic Data API.

Event Details:

When: February 21, 2014 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm

Where: The event will be held in the Bassis Center at Westminster College 1840 South 1300 East Salt Lake City, Utah  Building  24, click here for map

Who: This event is open to the public! Bring your laptop to participate in the data drive or stop by to discuss open data and the open data policy development. Click here to read about the various roles people can play in their community as a “Civic Innovator”.

Transportation and Parking: There is convenient access to public transportation and bike racks on campus. If you would like to drive and park on campus you will need a parking pass. Please print out a parking pass and place it on your dashboard. You can park in any unmarked parking space on campus for the duration of the event with this pass.


Format and Rules: This event will be conducted in an open discussion format where everyone is invited to participate. There will be no dumb questions, we will treat each other with respect and our results should reflect a collaboration of ideas.

Support by:

Accela_Logo WESTMINSTER_Standard_2_color_logoLQprint_transparent

CfA_logoESRI logoMicrosoft logo