Public data enables us to learn more about the world we live in. By public, we simply mean created by (and about) the public. Much like the more broadly used term “open data” suggests, public data embodies the notion that data should be freely used, without restrictions to access. Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case.
Locating the data you need, much less actually getting your hands on it, can prove to be quite a challenge. That’s where Enigma Public comes in. We’ve spent the last couple of years curating tens of thousands of public datasets — from the new and noteworthy to the widely utilitarian and wildly eccentric — to make data usable and easily accessible to all.
However, data is only as valuable (or interesting) to you as the questions you are able to ask of it — and that can be half the battle. So, in the spirit of curiosity, we’ve compiled a list of interesting, free* datasets and some questions from the data that we’ve pondered to get you started.
1. Orbiting Satellites Database from the Union of Concerned Scientists
2. U.S. Medical Adverse Events from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
3. Near Mid Air Flight Collisions from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration
4. U.S. Liquor Licenses from all state governments
5. U.S. Government Spending from the U.S. Treasury
6. U.S. Work Layoffs from 13 state governments
7. New York City Restaurant Inspections from the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
8. Work Health and Safety Violations from the U.S. Department of Labor
9. MoMA Art Collection from the MoMA
10. New York City 311 calls from the NYC local government
11. U.S. Farm Subsidies from the U.S. Department of Agriculture
*All data in Enigma Public is free for non-commercial use, published under CC BY NC 4.0. If you would like to use our data for a commercial purpose, please do be in touch. We’d love to chat about how we can help you work public data into your workflows.