Authors: Satyakam Goswami & Nasr ul Hadi
Akvo Foundation, Yusuf Sarai, New Delhi
This was our second meet-up in Delhi. We began with a round of introductions, a brief discussion about DataMeet’s (Bangalore-centric) history.
Nasr shared his experiences trying to apply data science to journalism and how, in most cases, the data was either incomplete, not specific enough or simply inaccessible. One of his projects involved patrolling with the Delhi Police and tracking the number of accident victims they transported to the Jai Prakash Narayan Trauma Center. Out of curiosity, Satyakam asked him more about how the trauma centre worked, because they have been using a FOSS SMS service to reduce clogging of their registration/reception counters.
Nasr also discussed the work of organisations like Human Rights Law Network and the immense amount of data they have on instances of abuse, child incarceration, etc in Indian prisons. Unfortunately, these aren’t digital. Guneet gave a similar description of police reform work done by CHRI.
Collaborations with Other Groups
We also discussed opportunities to collaborate with other meetups that shared our interest in data science. Hack/Hackers’ Delhi chapter conducted a news apps hackathon in February. Their next event will focus on data journalism, probably along the lines of the recent Editors’ Lab. We still need to discuss how to:
- educate Journalist on the importance of data driven journalism, and
- enable them with the tools and possible collaborations with people in this group.
We are also open to other such collaborations, but couldn’t think of any other community with a similar interest. If you know of any, please do let us know.
Elections 2014 and Public Infrastructure
Everyone was interested in building apps around then upcoming Delhi Elections and then the General Elections in 2014. Anyone interested in taking the lead on this, please do as soon as possible.
Akvo’s Isha told us how they are working closely with organisations that collect substantial amount of district-level data about water/sanitation infrastructure. To collect data in the field, they use/promote a self-developed Android-based software called FLOW.
Vivek also brought up data.gov.in and how he found some of their data to be incomplete. Satyakam suggested we work closely with the data.gov.in team in order to get the data we want. Developers in attendance suggested we ask the portal for a webservices API. Surenderan described how they do this at Change.org. Google’s Raman Jit joined us close to wrap up and offered to help with sourcing any data we need from various government stakeholders.
We still have to decide a date and venue for the June meet.
Vivek Khurana, Mintango Technologies
Surendran Balachandran, Change.org
Gaurav, Film Maker
Irshad Reyaz, Landshark Labs
Raman Jit Singh Chima, Google India