“We want to automate the process for reliable data exchange as much as possible,” explains Joep Meindertsma of Dexes. “The owner of the data sets certain conditions. For example, they want money for it, or they set certain requirements for how or for how long the data may be used. The person who wants to use the data signs a digital contract for approval and then the data can be retrieved from the source. The basic principle is that the owner of the data also retains possession of the data and determines under which conditions others may use the data.”
Back to Marineterrein, where work is now underway on the very first use case of AMdEX. “To be able to connect to the data exchange, we need to have our data infrastructure in order,” says Markus Pfundstein of Life Electronic. His company is responsible for the technology behind many of the smart city solutions at Marineterrein. “We must clean up all data and offer it automatically when approval is given for a transaction on AMdEX.”
Meindertsma, Van Arman and Pfundstein formulated an ideal customer journey, which they call the Happy Flow. If a request is made on AMdEX for a specific dataset, Marineterrein’s data infrastructure will receive a notification. The system checks the request, collects all data points from that database and makes a so-called sub package of it. The requester will then receive a link to download the data.
The development of this usecase has already provided Meindertsma with a lot of information. “For example about the API that our platform uses to communicate with the data infrastructure behind Marineterrein.” Dexes has now designed the API in a way that developers and data managers can easily use it. “That is extra important because in the smart city movement we often deal with volunteers,” explains Pfundstein. “If you want to use their data, you have to make the integration as easy as possible and ensure good documentation. They don’t want to spend four days integrating with AMdEX, but focus on their idea.”
In actual practice
A first version of AMdEX for the Marineterrein data should be ready in a few months. Then it can be tested in actual practice if and in what way others use the data. Van Arman: “Students and artists are already using the data and I am curious what will happen when it becomes even easier to obtain the data. I do believe in it, but I am biased: data is a design tool for me.”
Pfundstein thinks AMdEX has what it takes to revolutionize the data landscape. “Not everyone will share their data overnight: money, politics and egos will continue to play a role here. But AMdEX provides a good foundation: if the will is there, it’ll be much easier to share data.”