Ariel Schwartz highlights two of the winning projects that promise new tools to "make public data more helpful."
"One of the most exciting projects is Open Gov for the Rest of Us, a project that gives residents of low-income Chicago neighborhoods the tools to ask for better data about foreclosure, immigration, crime, and schools. This isn’t just an app--it’s an entire engagement campaign for low-income parts of the city."
"Our other favorite winner is OpenCounter," she notes, "a team that makes it easier for residents to navigate the tricky world of business permitting, which too often turns off burgeoning entrepreneurs. As the brief explains: 'Whether it’s a startup, boutique or restaurant, OpenCounter helps to simplify this interaction with city government. It collects and sorts data on existing regulations while providing running totals of the costs and time involved in setting up shop.'"
More detailed descriptions of each of the winning projects can be found at Nieman Journalism Lab, along with a discussion of the bigger news that "the News Challenge 'may be finished' as Knight looks for better ways to identify fundable innovation ideas in journalism, media, and communities."