Information Commons bridges govt. databases to create new apps

During the hurricanes the military was able to combine EPA data on toxic hazards with local maps of affected communities. That's just one example of the power of the Information Commons.
Written by ZDNet UK, Contributor on
<a href="http://blogs.zdnet.com/Research/?p=264&part=rss&tag=feed&subj=zdblog">Chris Jablonsky wrote last week</a> on the <a href="http://blogs.zdnet.com/Research/">Data Point</a> blog about Information Commons and how public sector agencies are tapping into the P2P database. <a href="http://www.maya.com/web/infocommons/infocommons.mtml">Information Commons </a>, developed by Maya Design is, Chris writes:

<blockquote>a universal database to which anyone can contribute, and which liberates information by abandoning relational databasing and the client-server computing model.</blockquote>

Maya's Josh Knauer described some of the public applilcations of IC:

<blockquote>The U.S. military’s "Command Post of the Future" (CPoF), a system for real-time situational awareness and collaborative decision-making in use in Iraq, is based on Maya’s architectural and visualization innovations. When hurricanes Katrina and Rita devastated the Gulf Coast recently, the system made its first bridging to the Information Commons as military officials needed to incorporate publicly available EPA data on toxic hazards in affected communities, said Knauer.     

<img src="http://blogs.zdnet.com/images/mayaviz_cpof_double_small_1.jpg">

In the public sector, among the several non-profit and goverment agency deployments, Knauer spoke about how Maya combined data from hundreds of government and private-sector sources into the Information Commons to create a location-aware directory of services with always current transit information for the Allegheny County Department of Human Services.    

"The biggest area of concern for us now is pushing the debate into the user interface," said Knauer. The more mixing and mashing of information the greater the challenge will be to comprehend it.
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