I went to Berlin last week to attend Open Knowledge Conference 2011 (OKCon). The event was nice – I met great people and “Kalkscheune” is a location which is typical for new media events nowadays: It´s a place where “old industry” took place in former days, “conquered” by digital citizens today. But OKCon is not a typical event for people living in the digital society – it´s rather avant-garde. At OKCon visionaries (like Brewster Kahle) meet and discuss how internet will/should transform society within the next few years towards an open society. Of course not anybody has the same visions about an open society, e.g. some business people might think that this is too much of innovation and they will close up their firewall, their intranet and finally their ears.
Open Data movement is a great thing but it will only be a sustainable project if enterprises will start to build their business on top of it. I gave a talk at OKCon which covered questions like: “How to talk with business people when questions come up like ‘Open Data – what is the value for us?'”. My basic idea is to start with using “Open Data Mechanisms” internally: As a first step companies could establish “Open Data Services” enterprise wide but internally. Only as a sub-sequent step open data will be consumed from the web and finally published on the web. But first of all:
“Use Open Data in Enterprises as an internal mechanism to distribute data within the company”
As a consequence of this, companies will seek for standards based solutions, and voila: W3C can offer the whole range of such standards called “Semantic Web” and “Linked Data”. Have a look at my slides: