Guidelines for Using Open Baltimore Data
The current vendor used to host Baltimore’s Open Data is Socrata. The best source of how-to videos or step-by-step recipes to get and use data are off the internet. Consider key word searches such as:
Socrata “open data”
Socrata “open data” download
Socrata “open data” api
I. See Dashboards
To date, the site has only been conducive to tech-savvy users to use data. In 2019-2020, we are starting to create dashboards and views to help make data visible for non-technical users. Dashboards/views are visible from the main menu:
II. See Pre-Established Views
The site allows both the City and end-user residents to create views and reports on data. Existing reports can be seen by clicking a large block from the main page.
Example: Click City Government:
Then, it is critical to decide of you want to see City-created views, views by end-users, or both. In the upper left one selects ‘Official’ for City-created views, ‘Community’ for end-user created. The default is that one sees both types of views mixed. This can be confusing, as there is no quality control on views – some views are nonsensical. (One task in 2020 is to par down user-created views that are old/defunct).
The below sections are a crib sheet for creating
was originally conducive to user
III. Do a Manual One-Time Export
Get to a desired dataset by any means: do a search, or click from the start.
Example: Under City Government:
IV. Use an API to Embed Ongoing Data Pulls into Your Application
- Search/find data you need (e.g. Bike Lanes)
- Click Bike Lanes in next screen ( make sure to click ‘dataset’ and not a view)
- Select API and click to copy the API EndPoint ( You can also select API Docs to learn more about using this specific API)
- We Encourage you to look at the API Docs
e.g. API Docs for Bike Lanes( https://dev.socrata.com/foundry/data.baltimorecity.gov/xzfj-gyms)
- We used JS to fetch the data from the API and build a basic HTML table. See code bellow:
- Here is the Bike Lanes HTML table: