POTUS has signed a bill into law that includes the OPEN Government Data Act, following approvals (and amendments) from the Senate and then by the House of Representatives. The sweeping legislation is aimed at making public data released by the government easier to access via smartphones and other electronic devices. It essentially requires that federal agencies publish any “non-sensitive” info in a “machine-readable” format (meaning in a file type that a phone or laptop can process, rather than a raw data dump).
The White House announced on Monday that the the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act (H.R. 4174) was now the law of the land, title II of which is the OPEN Government Data Act. The Center for Data Innovation think tank hailed the step as “a major bipartisan victory for open data,” adding that “the United States has established itself as one of the global leaders in open data.”