16th April 2013

Unconference and hackathon weekend – come and innovate at BlueLightCamp

Luke Hampson

On the weekend of 27/28 April, we’re supporting BlueLightCamp, which is a free event being billed as both an unconference and hackathon. Attracting workers from across the blue light services i.e. Fire, Police and resilience services, the aim is to innovate through promoting good-practice sharing, exchanging knowledge, networking as well as providing an opportunity for concepts and solutions to be tested through the hackathon.

Through two mapping agreements that we have with the Public Sector, Ordnance Survey already works closely with many of the blue light services, providing: digital map products; the sharing and visualisation of data; supporting better problem solving and helping to reduce costs and drive up efficiency levels amongst other aspects. So it seemed entirely fitting to support the BlueLightCamp as we have a further opportunity to engage with and support the very individuals that work in these services.

bluelightcamp image

Those in attendance, particularly for the hackathon taking place on Sunday, will be encouraged to collaborate and build prototype solutions that address some of the many challenges blue light workers are currently faced with. Whilst many of these services already have access to the most detailed geographic datasets that are produced and maintained by Ordnance Survey, we will be using the opportunity to also promote OS OpenData and OS OpenSpace amongst the attendees. Developers often use products and services provided through these initiatives to create solutions that address some of the social, economic and environmental issues we’re all confronted with today and we’re confident hackers at the BlueLightCamp will do the same.

Developers will be encouraged to use OS OpenSpace during the weekend’s hackathon

Through GeoVation, Ordnance Survey offers seed funding to kick-start ventures that address real-world problems. Community Payback Visibility, were previous winners of the ‘How can we transform neighbourhoods in Britain together?’ challenge, and they won funding for their novel and innovative way to address a blue light problem using geographic information. Whilst BlueLightCamp is unconnected to the current challenge (‘How can we help British business improve environmental performance?’), we will be offering two modest prizes (details of which to be confirmed) to the best results of Sunday’s hackathon.

The prizes will be as follows: –

1. For the best use of OS OpenData in addressing a real problem arising from Saturday’s unconference.

2. For the best use of OS OpenSpace in addressing a real problem arising from Saturday’s unconference.

The prizes will not preclude the use of other open data used together with OS OpenData and/or OS OpenSpace.


All in all, BlueLightCamp is shaping up to be both and interesting and thought-provoking event, so why not join in and book your place today?