As you will no-doubt have noticed, data.gov.uk has today undergone a significant design update. The project team have been working on this new look-and-feel and refactoring our code for the last couple of months. We hope that you will now find the site easier to navigate and use, especially when on netbooks which we’ve noticed many people using at conferences. Our thanks to those of you who have provided us with valuable feedback and comments on the initial data.gov.uk site, many of which have been incorporated into this new design.
In particular you may notice some changes on the homepage allowing us to highlight new or featured datasets straight to you. This will ensure that newly released datasets of interest (e.g. COINS or public servant high earners) can be promoted on the home page for easy access straight to the raw data you are looking for. It is now easier to find datasets quickly through browsing popular categories. With over 3,700 datasets now available and more being added all the time, these categories should help users access a wider range of data.
The homepage also enables us to highlight the latest blog post on the site, from the main data.gov.uk project team, the Transparency Board and others. Here you can keep up-to-date on progress on the Transparency Agenda, the drive to publish local open data, and more. Users can also quickly see the latest community-generated correspondence via the forum update.
We put a lot of work into improving the search functionality across the site, based on your feedback. As before, the main site search is faceted, but now you can also narrow results down to just datasets, apps, ideas or forum items, as well as filtering by publisher, tag or geographic area. This is still a live area of development, so expect more on this to come.
If you are interested in a particular category of data you can now monitor updates via RSS feeds. A complete list of the feeds available can be found within the updated sitemap, which also helps illustrate the range of content now available.
Our thanks to those of you who have signed-up and joined the data.gov.uk community. Since launch we now have over 3,800 members who are able to contribute to the forum and wiki and comment across the site on blog posts, datasets, applications and ideas. If you’ve yet to register, you can sign up as a community member.
Do stay in touch with the project and continue to let us know your feedback via comments below, the contact form or on Twitter @DirDigEng.