Watch Neelie Kroes’ plea to embrace open culture

The Potential of Open Data

Europeana recently showcased award-winning apps that demonstrate the social and commercial possibilities of open cultural data and its potential to touch everyday lives, at the European Commission’s Digital Agenda Assembly. MEP Silvia-Adriana Ticau presented the winning developers with their awards at a prize-giving ceremony at the Digital Agenda Assembly. The applications were developed as part of a series of competitive hackathons in Poland, Latvia and Belgium. Hack4Europe! 2012, run by Europeana with local partners, was launched by EU Vice-President and Commissioner for the Digital Agenda for Europe Neelie Kroes on May 9 in Brussels.

Winning Applications

The Europeana dataset is made widely available as an API to the Europeana partner network and was used by event developers from across Europe at each Hack4Europe! 2012event.Winners were selected in three categories at each hackathon: greatest commercial potential; greatest social impact; and most innovative. Developers themselves also voted for the Developer’s Pick award. A winning team from each hackathon was selected to showcase its application at the Digital Agenda Summit in Brussels. The three winning finalists were:

  • Poland: Artspace, developed by Agata Dzieka and Marek Sredniawa, promotes access to art in everyday situations. It means the Europeana collections can be made available in public places such as coffee shops, libraries, schools, and hotels. Making use of LCD displays and an online Collection Management System it allows a “Virtual art leasing” service and a highly personalised curation.
  • Latvia: Europ.in, developed by Eriks Remess, Maksim Berjoza and Uldis Bojars, makes searching, navigating and sharing Europeana content more fun. Even simple search results are displayed in a highly engaging visual manner which can then easily be used to navigate further or retrieve details about an individual record.
  • Belgium: Stackathon, developed by Senne Van Der Bogaert, Mehmet Celik and Wouter Aerts, is a mobile phone app that allows you to create personal online guides to art or art critiques. The app allows users to search and select artworks in Europeana and then, using the phone as a recording device, add audio comments to the selected artwork, before sharing online.

Europeana and Open Data

As Europe’s digital museum, library and gallery, Europeana www.europeana.eu has grown from a portal of two million digitised objects in 2008 to a repository for 23 million objects with 2200 partners across Europe. Today, it is at the forefront of promoting open cultural data in support of digital innovation across Europe. Access to online open data fuels creativity and innovation and creates opportunities for millions of Europeans working in Europe’s cultural and creative industries. The sector represents 3.3% of EU GDP and over €150 billion in exports. Supporting the European Commission’s Digital Agenda, Europeana is working to make data openly available to the public and private sectors so it can be used to develop innovative applications for tablets and smartphones and to create new web services and portals. Through its Data Exchange Agreement, with partners across Europe, it is moving towards the goal of making the data for 23 million cultural objects available for re-use under open licence.

More info on the EUscreen blog