the week beginning 16th December ’13 (Week 51)
Last week before some time with the family. Time that I have not had enough of this year. Our little girls are both very excited about the festivities, well the presents mostly I suspect.
Monday was spent in Horizon House, Bristol. The difficulties of being on loan from one organisation to another and having to do the paperwork side (admin) for the original organisation is that it has to pile up to when you are able to log on to the system. So more than a little time spent sorting out that on Monday – as it had been a while.
Some of the day included supporting the EA’s SRRP activities and feeding into the information gathering around the data management activities and the Directives teams roles. To some extent this was a high level data and process flow mapping activity. Interestingly the Directives team is like a mini version of the whole of DMMI (the data management department) in one team.
I spent some of the day discussing and getting my head around –GEMET (the GEneral Multilingual Environmental Thesaurus) – as it has been a while and is used within INSPIRE and other areas.
With others I took a little time discussing and learning many lessons about the tendering process and designing projects that work in the world of flexible agile projects, GCloud and especially working towards reduced lock in. Much of the discussion was based around how we get to working in a partnership (as a team). The right thing, definitely. However, the shared experiences and collective wisdom are just not there in abundance yet.
On Tuesday I travelled to Defra HQ in London, my last trip to London of the year and a chance to say goodbye to some colleagues who leave us at the end of the month.
We had some ICT meetings updating on strategic activities.
We had the registries project update including some discussion around updates to the tool (addition of some more codes, the addition of collections and the addition of Open Data Rights Statements using the Vocabulary). All this including the update that nears the alpha for wider use. I attempted in an earlier post to describe the sort of things that the project will help with.
Wednesday to Friday I worked out of NRW in Cardiff. Wednesday included calls discussing the currently running Standards Challenges with some of those involved. An important aspect is looking at options for how we make available the broader guidance, the standards and enable longer term feedback to aid maintenance of the standards and any implementation guidance. The URI Patterns Challenge has now closed. A number of helpful and constructive feedback that we will now in the coming weeks be taking on board to firm up a proposal ready for the next stage in the process.
I had a number of management meetings and Defra Knowledge Strategy implementation discussions alongside updates from currently running projects.
We have started to receive some papers for the Linking Geospatial Data Workshop. It is looking like it will be a full and packed agenda.
We published the new Defra Open Data Strategy. A culmination of a huge amount of work from across the Defra network (core department and 38 ALBs). In reality though the ambitious work starts here. Lots to do in the new year.
Friday the day of finishing things off before a few weeks off.
Some calls with my reports (we have quite a dispersed team) ready for people going off on leave. Setting up working arrangements for the new year between the DGU and INSPIRE help desk and a call with Antonio (DGU) about shared priorities and some potential useful activities. We had the UKGovLD delivery team catch-up updating on activities and making arrangements for the new year.
I met with Matt Jukes (@jukesie) and Laura Dewis (@lauradee) from ONS. Great to finally meet both. Great discussions and so many shared interests. It is fantastic knowing there are people in this space in this part of the country. Would be great if there was some centres where we could all be based (some of the time).
I joined a call between the EA and GDS to help discuss procurement approaches and queries on a digital proposition that is progressing. A good discussion and some actions for all of us to come back on.
Have a Happy Christmas and festive break