The Federal IT Dashboard

Vivek Kundra, the US national CIO, unveiled the new IT spending dashboards at usaspending.gov at the Personal Democracy Forum in New York. The dashboards are designed to help Vivek and the CIOs of individual government agencies get a handle on the effectiveness of government IT spending. The official description from the website goes as follows:

The IT Dashboard is a new website enabling federal agencies and the general public to view details of federal information technology investments.

The exciting part about this news message is the fact that the IT Dashboard is available to the general public. This means that government data is shown transparently to the people and tools to examine the data are also provided. According to Tim O’Reilly there was a big discussion about the workload of maintaining the data. Having this data public creates the urgency to keep it up-to-date, clean and making decisions based on what the data shows.

The visualization methods are rather crude. Pie Charts, Bar Charts and the indispensable Gauge show the basic data. Unfortunately the creators couldn’t resist the temptation to add some 3D to the graphics. A customizable Treemap visualization let’s the user drill down into more complex datasets. All the visualizations are created in Flash by using the Fusion Charts library.

it_dashboards_01it_dashboards_02

All the datasets are also available as XML Feed or CSV. Furthermore, custom Data Feeds can be created and downloaded by chosing the source, selecting the required fields and adding filters for agencies. This seems to be another strong feature of the website and could provide interested users with exactly the data they are intersted in.

Read Tim O’Reilly’s View on the IT Dashboard.

Share this article

Subscribe for more

Subscribe with RSS Join our
Warning: file_get_contents(https://feedburner.google.com/api/awareness/1.0/GetFeedData?uri=Datavisualization) [
function.file-get-contents.php]: failed to open stream: HTTP request failed! HTTP/1.0 404 Not Found in /home/interact/www/datavisualization.ch/wp-content/plugins/fanbase/fanbase.php on line 93
16545 Readers

Give Feedback

  • http://www.juiceanalytics.com/ Zach Gemignani

    A quick correction: not all the visualizations were done using Fusion Charts library. We were thrilled to realize that Vivek’s team had used our open-source JuiceKit treemap (www.juicekit.org).

    • http://www.artillery.ch/ Wiederkehr

      @Zach: Thank’s for the correction. I wasn’t aware that the treemap visualization is not created using Fusion Charts (although I saw that it’s built with Flex).

  • http://www.juiceanalytics.com Zach Gemignani

    A quick correction: not all the visualizations were done using Fusion Charts library. We were thrilled to realize that Vivek’s team had used our open-source JuiceKit treemap (www.juicekit.org).

    • http://artillery.ch Benjamin Wiederkehr

      @Zach: Thank’s for the correction. I wasn’t aware that the treemap visualization is not created using Fusion Charts (although I saw that it’s built with Flex).

  • http://www.swivel.com/ Natalie

    Data transparency has come quite a long way in the past few years. It’s great to see that they’re offering the raw data to download in XML and CSV formats. Hopefully people will get engaged with the data the government is releasing and create their own visualizations, that may or may not highlight something different than what’s on the site.

  • http://www.swivel.com Natalie

    Data transparency has come quite a long way in the past few years. It’s great to see that they’re offering the raw data to download in XML and CSV formats. Hopefully people will get engaged with the data the government is releasing and create their own visualizations, that may or may not highlight something different than what’s on the site.

  • Pingback: Federal IT Dashboard : Forest and the Trees

  • http://www.twgonzalez.com/ Tom Gonzalez

    While I applaud the effort at transparency, and the work required to organize the data and make it public, this dashboard sure says very little about Mr. Kundra’s expertise and knowledge of data visualization. This looks like the slop you see from most internal corporate departments and employs little to no data visualization best practices. Hopefully the data visualization community can take a better stab at visualizing this data in more meaningful and communicative ways.

  • http://www.twgonzalez.com Tom Gonzalez

    While I applaud the effort at transparency, and the work required to organize the data and make it public, this dashboard sure says very little about Mr. Kundra’s expertise and knowledge of data visualization. This looks like the slop you see from most internal corporate departments and employs little to no data visualization best practices. Hopefully the data visualization community can take a better stab at visualizing this data in more meaningful and communicative ways.