Big Data…Coming to a Smartphone App Near You

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Most government data have been available to the public for decades. But if you’ve ever tried to access it, you know that finding what you need quickly and in a useful format has been nearly impossible.

Good news! The federal government has begun releasing data in a digital format that allows software engineers to use it to develop interactive applications. These apps can help consumers, businesses and researchers reach new insights.

Coming to a Smartphone Near You

What kinds of information are we talking about?

Labor and Health Violations

The U.S. Labor Department and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration release records of labor-law and health and safety violations for hotels, restaurants and shops. The Eat Shop Sleep app, by Rachel Moore, maps health and labor-law violations by restaurants, hotels and shops, and combines that information with Yelp reviews.


Aequitas, an app from Fuzion Applications Inc., gathers salary data released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics for more than 800 occupations from all around the United States. Job seekers can see the range of salaries in any area and compare what they might make in two different states or regions.

Business Owner Addresses

The Your Mapper app, from Metro Mapper LLC ,collects the addresses of business license holders from various city authorities in places like Chicago, Ill.; Portland, Ore.; and Louisville, Ky., and displays them on city maps. A great resource for salespeople looking to target potential customers!

Hospital Records

When the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services release hospital safety records, quality indicators and patient surveys, Hospital Quality, an app from MicroStrategy Inc., combines this data with patient-satisfaction scores and uses the data to rank hospitals.

Food and Fitness

Everything you wanted to know about Americans’ access and proximity to grocery stores; obesity rates; diabetes rates; physical fitness levels; and proximity to fast food, courtesy of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and their Food Environment Atlas (at ers.usda.gov).


If you’re looking to get into the up-and-coming field of nanotechnology, the National Nanotechnology Initiative’s resource map (at nano.gov) shows the location of degree programs, facilities and research-and-development projects in the field of nanotechnology, giving businesses, investors and students a comprehensive overview of what’s out there.

If you’re searching for your next great job opportunity, contact Smith Hanley Associates. We have the information, expertise and connections you need to find it!

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