#OpenDataEDB: the results

Last night was the first OKFN Meet-Up in Scotland* at the Ghillie Dhu, Edinburgh, run in collaboration with DevCSI. 19 people attended from around the city and nearby, including Glasgow, and those visiting for the Open Biblio Sprint represented Cambridge, London, Wolverhampton and the Netherlands.

The Auditorium was a beautiful venue, and there was a good space for giving presentations complete with seamless audio and visual equipment (a rare treat!).


We kicked off with the first three Lightning Talks:

It was great to see people gravitating towards those whose presentations had struck a chord… Mahendra had invited discussion around potential events and many people had plans or ideas which they wanted to run past him, while Rod’s points on taxonomy were pertinent to Mark’s work on BibServer as well as others’ research. Other discussions grew between the bar snacks, as people began with the standard ‘what do you do?’ and swiftly developed into ‘oh that’s funny, I was talking to so-and-so about that just now…’ Our dedicated bartender was contributing too, as he specialised in nanotechnology!

The next three talks followed:

The hubbub of enthusiasm started up again, and it appeared there were good conversations and connections emerging around the room. From these, or perhaps just courage from having seen others do their presentations (and me fumbling along as make-shift compère), two additional people decided to give impromptu talks:

Many thanks to all those who presented and to those who attended to discuss all things #OpenData. Hopefully everyone left with good ideas of topics and people to follow up with afterwards, and who knows where these will lead?


As this was our first Scotland-based Meet-up we’d be glad to get feedback so we can improve; the next one is planned for May, so if you have anything you’d particularly like to see, hear or say, let us know (one suggestion was that talks are recorded, so people unable to attend can keep up-to-date). This and other events will be promoted via the OKFN Scotland List, so do sign up here otherwise you might miss out!

* Actually, it turns out that there was a Meet-up in Scotland in 2010, according to someone who’s been on the scene longer than I… but I won’t tell anyone if you don’t 😉

Postscript, 23rd March: see here for a review by Laura Newman and a link to one by Graham Steel, thanks to Information Today Europe.

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About Naomi Lillie

Naomi has been working for Open Knowledge since 2011 and is based in the UK. She supports operations, projects, staff and the community network.
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7 Responses to #OpenDataEDB: the results

  1. Jo Walsh says:

    OKScotland – that was in May 2010. It was more of a mini-conference than a meetup, an afternoon-evening conference, of about 75 people? I helped put it together, along with my colleagues Robin Rice and Stuart Macdonald at the EDINA Datacentre at the University of Edinburgh.

    It was fun. We covered Open Research and Open Mapping and Open Civic Information. There’s quite an overlap with the ScotGovCamp scene i think, that’s much more active. Tartantm, that’s just starting up. I expect there’s lots more overlap. There’s sympathy in government, too, I think. “Where’s Scotland’s Data?”

    I’m on kind of an indefinite sabbatical from OKF now, but it is very heartening to see a new generation appear, take over, get enthusiastic, get people talking who wouldn’t otherwise be talking, inspiring one another, and you seem to be doing a good job of that so far!

  2. Really glad to hear that last night’s meet up went well – I hope to make the next one, schedule permitting.

    There was indeed a meetup in Scotland in 2010 and the materials are still available online here:

    At that event I also shot some video with a Flip Camera though it is of a very patchy quality (this was very much a test and last minute thing). However it can still be seen/endured here:

    Look forward to hearing about future events!

    Nicola Osborne, EDINA Social Media Officer

  3. Details of the 2010 event (including slides &videos) held at InSpace can be found at url: http://tinyurl.com/6vqj9g7

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