February 2, 2011 – Journalism made an unusual appearance at the TEDxBrighton event recently. In an arena where technology, entertainment, and design are the focus (and part of the acronym), Greg Hadfield, a former journalist and currently director of strategic projects at Cogapp, proposed making Brighton and Hove into an “open-data city” to rival San Francisco, Washington or New York.

This interesting topic was found on Journalism.co.uk in their article, “Open-data cities: a lifeline for local newspapers.” A move like this could put local newspapers back in the game by making data available in innovative and equitable ways.

Hadfield stated, “By 2050, 70 per cent of the world’s population will live in cities and in one sense, of course, all cities will eventually be digital. Data is going be a key component of that future, especially open, machine-readable datasets that are linked to other datasets. “

Comparing this progress to theexplosive growth of railroads in the 19thcentury, Hadfield sees open data as the fuel to drive the semantic web into bigger and better things. This is new territory, a new frontier for anyone, let alone the newspaper business. But it does offer them a new revenue stream and a new audience. What do you think?

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Data Harmony, a unit of Access Innovations, the world leader in indexing and making content findable.