Opening up knowledge in Geneva: OKCon 2013
This is a guest post by Anna Gold, the university librarian at Cal Poly.
Open Week 2013 is the perfect time to share what I learned about the global movement to open up knowledge! The global Open Knowledge Conference (OKCon 2013) held in September in Geneva, Switzerland, brought together 1,000 activists, hackers, cultural stewards, data geeks, and social advocates in a beautifully organized, three-day (espresso-infused) event.
Everyone there was focused on creating social and business value by building collections and systems of open culture (like the Getty’s newly open art images!), open data, and open government information.
I took two highlights home that will influence my thinking and how we work together here at Cal Poly:
- “Open” is a movement! We’re beyond the “let’s put stuff up openly and see what happens” era, and we’re heading into a world where enabling action, raising awareness, and making new products and services with open knowledge is what it’s all about.
- Visualization makes data powerful and actionable. The rise of infographics and apps are everywhere. Check out UN refugees data, or an example of new data-driven journalism from Thomson Reuters, “connectedchina.”
I was inspired and energized by the seminars, workshops, and the TED-style main stage events. You can catch them online.
The huge international participation was a vivid reminder to me of the global connections that open knowledge makes possible.
As if all that weren’t enough, I got to tell the world about our Kennedy Library! My talk was about how academic libraries are becoming a hub for open culture in their university communities.
And yes: my slides and talk are open. You can see them on our newly redesigned DigitalCommons@CalPoly.