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January 26, 2010

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Rob Weir

I think that if you talk to experts in this area they would express a preference for datasets (as opposed to documents) to be published in a format directly consumable, in particular by web apps for making making mashups. So they want the data sets in pure XML, or in Atom feeds, or JSON objects. Presentation level documents like XLS, PDF or indeed ODF are not the best choice for publishing a dataset (as opposed to a document).

You might find this discussion interesting: http://www.sunlightlabs.com/blog/2009/adobe-bad-open-government/

Dennis Byron

Dennis Byron's reply:

Thanks for the comment. As a consumer of such data for my research, I agree. I'm happy with CSV and TXT (which is why I always found the the whole OOXML/ODF thing simply an IBM/Sun attack on Microsoft). Just to be clear, it is the U.S. government that chose .xls and the other formats. It's not that I am advocating one or the other.

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