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May 11, 2009

Microsoft unveils Open Government Data Initiative

The new approach to house existing public government data in the cloud

By CBR Staff Writer

Microsoft has unveiled its Open Government Data Initiative, and will be releasing a collection of software assets that allow government agencies and developers to publish and interact with their data in Windows Azure, a cloud computing platform.

According to Microsoft, Open Government Data Initiative (OGDI) provides an internet-standards-based approach to house existing public government data in Windows Azure. The approach makes the data accessible in a programmatic manner that uses open, industry-standard protocols and application programming interfaces.

Daniel Kasun, senior director of the US public sector developer evangelism group at Microsoft, said: OGDI-based solutions not only provide easy access to government data, but also demonstrate how cloud computing can significantly reduce the cost, complexity and time to market for solutions that consume the data. Developers will be able to focus solely on solving the business needs of government agencies, resulting in a breadth of new solutions in a very short amount of time.

Curt Kolcun, vice president of the US public sector at Microsoft, said: Government organizations at every level are looking to the IT community to provide value, interoperability and choice as they strain to meet the tracking, reporting and engagement demands necessary to serve citizens. Microsoft is helping customers connect the dots of information-sharing to bring open government to life – from extending the capabilities they already own to enabling secure, innovative transformation in the cloud.

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