Asian Surveying & Mapping
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June 15th, 2010
Blazing Internet Speeds and Open Data Make Singapore a Testbed for the Future

Singapore has embraced the “wisdom of the crowds” mentality that has been brought about by the rise in social networking applications. Peter Ho, the head of civil service, states that there is a mindset shift from “government-to-you” to “government-with-you.” This shift is already evident with several geospatial data services, including a collaboration with Google that provides real-time traffic feeds upon the popular Google Maps interface in order to help commuters better plan their travels.

The “government as platform” shift isn’t solely centered on making data available to the public, there’s also a move to add analytical capabilities that make greater sense of this data. The greater government transparency of both data and analytical insight means a tectonic shift in government mindset where control is shared by citizens.

The high rate of Internet speed will enable an entirely new class of network-based communications that will have the capabilities of delivering high-speed video, high-quality sound and dynamic data feeds. Geospatial technologies can benefit greatly from this throughput for the delivery of higher-fidelity visualizations, greater data synthesis from a number of real-time feeds, and on-the-fly synthesis and fusion of inputs for greater insights.

Singapore’s new e-government master plan is expected to launch by mid-year next year with a phased approach that coincides with the next generation national broadband network. The world will be wise to watch these capabilities and policy shifts closely as this world-leading connectivity and transparent data policy provide the infrastructure for the future of geospatial technology.

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