Yesterday, the coding geniuses at Phandeeyar launched their latest project — an open data site called Open Development Myanmar. According to Phandeeyar, the site is an interactive centralized repository of resources that has an open API and provides user support. Users can explore important laws, news, statistics, and reports on Myanmar.
The site was created through a partnership with the regional open data platform OpenDevelopmentMekong.net.
So what exactly is ‘open data’? According to the Open Data Handbook, it’s “data that can be freely used, re-used and redistributed by anyone – subject only, at most, to the requirement to attribute and sharealike”.
In the case of Open Development Myanmar, that means there are little to no copyright restrictions on the data that you find on the site. Not only is the sharing of data allowed, but it’s in fact encouraged.
The site is a bit overwhelming at first, but for all the right reasons. There’s so much information available on pretty much everything you’d ever need or want to know about Myanmar.
You can access the latest news on Myanmar, datasets, library records, and extensive Wikipedia-esque pages on important topics.
Our favorite part, though, is the interactive map of Myanmar. It’s easily one of the coolest things we’ve ever seen.
The map is divided into seven ‘map layers’ — environment, infrastructure, energy, hydrology, demographic, agriculture, and administration. These layers are then further divided into subcategories of data that will be visualized on the map once you click on each one. Examples of data you can find are protected areas and heritage sites, population density, and township boundaries.
Overall, the execution of the site is as fantastic as the concept behind it.
Given the restrictions on freedom of press and media in Myanmar, a project encouraging the sharing of information is a much-needed and welcome breath of fresh air.