Open Data Now: Hottest Contenders for 2014

Mark Boyd | Programmable Web | January 1, 2014

A book about open data, to be released in January—and the launch of a pilot website showcasing open data businesses—both forecast a big year for open data in 2014, and highlight the importance of APIs in powering this new wave of innovation. ProgrammableWeb spoke with Joel Gurin, author of Open Data Now, and reviewed some of the businesses that make up the preliminary Open Data 500 list.

“It’s a very exciting time for open data,” says Gurin. ”One of the premises of open data is that you can build a viable business on free, open data. Entrepreneurs are finding new uses for data that has been around for years. And there are a number of companies already using open data. In five to 10 years, companies using open data will be the rule and not the exception.”
Open data business models

Gurin points to a number of key sectors where he expects to see the greatest advances using open data in 2014.

Health: “We’re seeing tremendous activity around health right now. Competitions like the healthapalooza events are bringing in thousands of people to make use of health data sources. But there’s a lot of sorting out to do about what is open and what is private and protected data. We are seeing datasets open up around cost of care, quality of care, accessibility of providers. The opportunities...