Tuesday 3:40 p.m.–4:25 p.m.

Build a Django App from Public Data, the next step in your Django journey

Joe Kokenge

Audience level:



In the vein of chicagocrime.org, you too can spin public data into a Django Application. We'll browse some examples of Django applications powered by public data, look at some places to get public data and how to ask for it. Finally, we'll walk through an example of a live application based on San Antonio's restaurant inspections.


The Django documentation and tutorials are excellent. But, what happens after you've built your "Polls" application? Finding the next step can be difficult. It's hard to go from "Polls" to "Instagram" and still stay motivated and excited about your Django journey.

This talk discusses public data as a good next step. Public data covers every topic imaginable, is readily available (you can even make the government send it to you), and having a ready made dataset lets you focus on exploring certain parts of Django (templates, views, url routing, models and the ORM API) while leaving other parts for later.

In the tradition of the Lawrence Journal-World, many journalist/developers have built Django applications driven by public data. We'll take a look at some of these for inspiration and look at places to get public data. We'll see that one of the neatest things about using public data is that you can build some really cool and useful applications which will help you stay motivated when the Djangoing gets tough.

We'll also walk through a live example of an application built for the San Antonio Express-News that uses the city of San Antonio's restaurant inspections. We'll see that the models and views for this application are a good next step--not too hard, but still challenging--as you continue learning the Django data management pipeline.