There are many issues of policy, culture, design and technology that we need to get right for this to happen, but the main objectives are clear:
- The data from city services should be made available as Open Data and through published “Application Programming Interfaces” (APIs) so that everybody knows how they work; and can adapt them to their own individual needs.
- The data and APIs should be made available in the form of Open Standards so that everybody can understand it; and so that the systems that we rely on can work together.
- The data and APIs should be available to developers working on Cloud Computing platforms with Open Source software so that anyone with a great idea for a new service to offer to people or businesses can get started for free.
- The technology systems that support the services and infrastructures we rely on should be based on Open Architectures, so that we have freedom to chose which technologies we use, and to change our minds.
- Governments, institutions, businesses and communities should participate in an open dialogue, informed by data and enlightened by empathy, about the places we live and work in.
If local authorities and national government create planning policies, procurement practises and legislation that require that public infrastructure, property development and city services provide this openness and accessibility, then the money spent on city infrastructure and services will create cities that are open and adaptable to everyone in a digital age.