is Live – Get Your Data While it’s Hot

Posted to Data Sources  |  Nathan Yau

Big news. is now live. Government data is at your fingertips.

The purpose of is to increase public access to high value, machine readable datasets generated by the Executive Branch of the Federal Government. Although the initial launch of provides a limited portion of the rich variety of Federal datasets presently available, we invite you to actively participate in shaping the future of by suggesting additional datasets and site enhancements to provide seamless access and use of your Federal data. Visit today with us, but come back often. With your help, will continue to grow and change in the weeks, months, and years ahead.

I was actually expecting an API of some sort, but it’s a searchable catalog that makes it easier to find the datasets scattered across all the U.S. agency sites. I still need to explore more to figure out what exactly is there, but this is big news for data fans. What do you think of the new site? Discuss in the comments below.

[via infosthetics]


  • The data available right now is really sparse, but it seems like a good start and is definitely heading in the right direction. I’d like to see more metadata in machine-readable (ie: XML) and standardized (FGDC) formats.

  • I know the launch date had been announced, but I still think the release is too early, as there are not enough datasets.
    The principle, though – adding a standard layer of metadata on top of objects of varying shapes and sizes – is promising.

  • There aren’t that many datasets, but I think it’s better that it went up now rather than waiting. They can get input, and the structure is there so that it’ll be easier to add datasets. It could take forever if they waited to get lots of data with all the bureaucratic stuff they go through and all

  • It’s a great start. I’ve found a variety of really useful data (EIA, BTS, BLS) on various sites over the past few years, both for work and personal use; it’s a great idea to pull it all together- let’s put the output of the bureaucracy to work!


The Changing American Diet

See what we ate on an average day, for the past several decades.

Divorce Rates for Different Groups

We know when people usually get married. We know who never marries. Finally, it’s time to look at the other side: divorce and remarriage.

Life expectancy changes

The data goes back to 1960 and up to the most current estimates for 2009. Each line represents a country.

Watching the growth of Walmart – now with 100% more Sam’s Club

The ever so popular Walmart growth map gets an update, and yes, it still looks like a wildfire. Sam’s Club follows soon after, although not nearly as vigorously.