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UK lawyer asking Apple, Google and Uber to open open map data



A UK-based lawyer, The Open Data Institute (ODI), has published a report asking for the British government to "collaborate with Google, Apple and Uber to publish more map data and support Britain's new technologies" and cites the meaning of "geospatial data" data, "describing places that include address of a building, bordering on cities and regions, and the extent of floods" – for planning and decision making necessary to support public services and drive the modern economy. While the report shows that the UK government has committed itself to making its own data more readily available, it is difficult to obtain this data from both the public and private sectors, even with public authorities that charge high fees, privatization of Things like British address data by Royal Mail, and Google Maps have increased their pricing significantly in recent years. The ODI report suggests that commercial units that have "monopoly" on specific types of geospatial data components stifle innovation and do not fully exploit potential economic and social benefits.

While the ODI is a private research group, like The Verge notes, it was founded by Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web, and Nigel Shadbolt, professor of artificial intelligence at Oxford University, and has great influence in the UK, something which indicates that the Government will likely take its recommendations seriously and the report is due to a forthcoming review of the UK government's strategy for geospatial data, which indicates that it will be taken into account any new laws that can be passed, even if remains unclear exactly what steps Britain can take to force data sharing between these companies.

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