Code for America Logo

Code for America in NC

Research Triangle, NC –

What is Code for America?

Code for America is a 501(c)3 non-profit that envisions a government by the people, for the people, that works in the 21st century.

Our programs change how we participate in government by:

  • connecting citizens and governments to design better services,
  • encouraging low-risk settings for innovation; and,
  • supporting a competitive civic tech marketplace.

Code for America in NC

In 2014, NC will have a large percentage of the Code for America activities in the US.

NC Cities with a Code for America Fellowship Program

NC Cities with Code for America Brigades 

What is a Code for America Fellowship?

The Fellowship is Code for America’s best known program and consists of a one year residency placing developers, designers and researchers within local governments. Over the course of the program, fellows and government partners build apps, inspire new thinking amongst public servants and tackle some of our country’s toughest problems.

What is a Code for America Brigade?

The Brigade network is an ongoing effort to deploy, maintain and sustain civic technology and open data infrastructures. Each Brigade is comprised of local volunteers and government employees who connect for regular hack nights, discussions and app development.

Brigade Projects in the Triangle

  • The Raleigh Brigade was one of 15 inaugural Code for America Brigades in 2012. The Raleigh Brigade participated in the Code for America ‘Race for Reuse’ campaign and developed and deployed the Adopt-a-Shelter app for Raleigh. The Raleigh Brigade sponsors Triangle Wiki and CityCamp NC
  • The Cary Brigade formed in 2013 and is currently working on an app to visualize development data in Cary. The Cary Brigade sponsors Triangle Open Data Day
  • The Durham Brigade formed in 2013 and is currently working on a Durham Restaurant app. The Durham Brigade is working with the City of Durham and Durham County to adopt a joint Open Data Policy
  • In December 2013 the Triangle Brigades cooperated in an event to assist Raleigh with their Open Data Portal

Code for America - Joint meeting to assist Open Raleigh

How Do I Get Involved?

Code for America is an open group and all can join. We need a diverse voice to be effective. Please join your local Meetup Group:

If you don’t live in any of these areas, please contact Ian Henshaw, Brigade Captain for Code for Cary and Managing Partner of Tech Tank, and he will get you connected!

Previous Tech Tank Articles on Code for America

Picture by Reid Serozi

Dart Language Logo

Dart Flight School in the Triangle

Research Triangle, NC – Local developer Luke Dary and the Google Developer Group in Research Triangle (GDG Research Triangle) are working with the American Underground to bring the Dart Flight School to the Triangle. On February 8, There will be simultaneous classes at the Main and new Raleigh locations of the American Underground.

What is Dart?

The Dart Language is a new class-based and object-oriented platform for scalable web app engineering. Dart is an open-source project with contributors from Google and elsewhere and includes many tools and libraries to help with the development process. Compiling using Angular Java Script will produce Dart web apps that will run in all modern browsers.

What is Dart Flight School?

Dart Flight Schools are community events run by Google Developer Groups to help developers learn Dart and Angular. Dart Flight Schools can be different in each location based on the organizers, local skill sets and interests. There can be tech talks, code labs or even mini-hackathons. As we get closer to the date, we will see what GDG Research Triangle has finalized as an agenda for the Triangle Dart Flight School.

Dart Flight School Details

  • When: Saturday, February 8, 2014 from 1-5pm
  • Durham: American Underground @ Main, 201 W Main St., Durham, NC 27701 // Durham Registration
  • Raleigh: American Underground @ Raleigh, 213 Fayetteville St. , Raleigh, NC 27601 // Raleigh Registration

Learn Dart and Angular, Get Your Web Development Wings

Sign up for only one of the sessions. The Raleigh location can hold ~20-30 people and the Durham facility can hold ~80 people. Resources for the Dart Flight School can be found on the Dart Website.  Also the GDG Research Triangle will be publishing more details and may conduct some preliminary activities at their normal meet-ups.

If you attend, please let us know what you think of Dart, Angular and the Dart Flight School.

All Things Open Conference Picture

All Things Open – Oct 23-24

Raleigh, NC – All Things Open is coming to Raleigh on October 23-24, 2013 and it is looking to be a huge event not to be missed.

Join the world’s top developers, technologists and decision makers as we explore open source and the open web in the enterprise. Two days of keynotes, talks, tutorials and networking opportunities in Raleigh and the Research Triangle area.

Check out the impressive list of speakers.

Check out the amazing list of topics to be presented in the schedule. (Note from All Things Open: “Please keep in mind, our schedule will be changing up to the week of the conference”).

Why should you attend All things Open?

  • High quality speakers, some of the best in the country
  • The most relevant technologies will be covered – a great educational opportunity
  • The most important companies in the open source space will attend and participate
  • Tremendous Value

All Things Open has extended the Early Bird Registration though October 16, so there is no better bargain anywhere for the speakers and content, so register now!

Previous Tech Tank articles on All Things Open:

All Things Open Conference Picture

Registration Open for All Things Open™

Raleigh, NC – Early Bird registration for All Things Open™ is now available for an unknown period, so register today! See News Release. This is a limited time offer.

This October 23-24, 2013 in Raleigh, NC, All Things Open™, a conference for technologists and decision makers around the topic of open source in the enterprise, will be held at the Raleigh Convention Center in downtown Raleigh, NC, the open source city.

Code for America Cary Logo

A Look Inside: Code for America Cary

Cary, NC – What is civic hacking for social good? Who or what is Code for America?

Lets take a look at what is going on with the Code for America Cary Brigade and maybe you will find out. (Full disclosure, I am an organizer and member of the Cary Brigade)

The Cary Brigade formed in May 2013 as a development of the Cary Technology Task Force, the subsequently formed Technology Tank, the first Cary Open Data Day and the support of the vibrant Raleigh Brigade of Code for America. The Cary Brigade has decided to start with visualizing commercial permit data in the town of Cary.

Code for America aims to improve the relationships between citizens and government. We help governments restructure to create low-risk settings for innovation, engage citizens to create better services, and support ongoing competition in the govtech marketplace.

Tuesday, July 23 was the third meeting of the brigade (we meet monthly). On May 24, 2013 we received commercial permit data files from Cary in response to a public records request from member Robert Campbell. We received 9 data files most likely from a relational database.

At our June meeting, the Google AppEngine was discussed as a way to develop the ‘back-end’ of the application. The first issue we encountered was that the file with the property locations had all of the geo-locations zeroed out, so an effort was made to geolocate all of the 79,000+ records (with a method that still has not been disclosed…) Since then, there were 2 different efforts to house and use this geocoded information:


With the help of Reid Serozi, just hired by Socrata, The Cary Brigade was offered a Socrata Community Data Platform.  Here is what we were able to do in an hour with the Socrata platform:

Property Data set on Socrata

Property Data set on Socrata

Socrata Visualization - Heat Map of Cary Property Data

Socrata Visualization – Heat Map of Cary Property Data

Socrata Visualization - Point Map of Cary Property Data

Socrata Visualization – Point Map of Cary Property Data

During the meeting, Reid showed us how the point map could be accessed and displayed on his smart phone.

Brandon Smith took another route and used Parse as his data repository and with some awesome code was able to provide a simulated app from the data (we did not ask how long this took…):

Parse data file

Parse data file

Brandon Smith simulated app - Properties nearest to my Location

Brandon Smith simulated app – Properties nearest to my Location

Brandon Smith simulated app - Properties in my Neighborhood

Brandon Smith simulated app – Properties in my Neighborhood

Where do we go from here?

There is more investigation into the data, as we are not sure that we have the information that would allow the app to answer a compelling question. More data scrubbing, another public data request(?) and more investigation into the front-end display of the information.

If you are interested, please join us. You can contact Ian Henshaw for more information.

All Things Open Conference Picture

Coming Soon: All Things Open

Raleigh, NC – It has just been announced that All Things Open™ is coming to Raleigh on October 23-24, 2013. No doubt that Raleigh becoming known as the Open Source City is a major factor in this conference coming to Raleigh. The Open Source and Open Data movements in the Triangle will get a nice boost from All Things Open.

For those who cannot attend OSCON 2013 (and even for those who can) All Things Open™ will bring a great set of speakers and sessions.

Join the world’s top technologists and decision makers as we explore open source in the enterprise. Two days of keynotes, talks, tutorials and networking opportunities in Raleigh and the Research Triangle area.

The full listings are yet to be posted so make sure you sign-up to receive the latest on speakers, info and events as they are announced.