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Open government (data)

Comment is free, but facts are sacred Thanks to the exceedingly good central government run website to file applications under the Right to Information Act (see end of this post for details), I got the opportunity to look at some useful data on implementation of large nationwide schemes. I have been trying to obtain data on such schemes across subjects, disciplines and departments with the objective of... read more

Counting system losing count

In continuation of a campaign to free public data (and potentially public data), this opinion piece published in Business Standard on 21 Jan 2014. Also see similar advocacy articles on public data across health and natural history. More to follow… In 1921, laying the foundation for a leading newspaper’s entry into data journalism, its editor C P Scott wrote, “Comment is free, facts are... read more

Can we count on our counting systems?

A shorter version of this article appeared on BMJ Blogs on October 31, 2013 under the same title.  Co-written with Himabindu G L of IPH, Bangalore. Much of the material remains unprocessed, or, if processed, unanalysed, or, if analysed, not read, or, if read, not used or acted upon Robert Chambers Basic demographic information forms the basis of policy, planning and public discourse.  The system... read more

“old and fragile records” in an age of RTI and computers: How our heritage collections are managed by ZSI

The Zoological Survey of India has an illustrious history. On 1st July, 1916, the organisation was instituted with a mission to “…to promote survey, exploration and research leading to the advancement in our knowledge of various aspects of exceptionally rich life of the erstwhile British Indian Empire” (Emphasis mine). Alfred William Alcock was a British physician-naturalist, a common breed in those... read more

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