The Open Data Institute (ODI) has opened its doors for the first time with the help of a super-fast network from Virgin Media Business. Working with tight timelines, the connection was put in place in a matter of weeks before the official opening of the organisation. The ODI is committed to helping organisations open up the supply of open data and to encouraging demand for it across the public and private sectors.
The ODI is the first of its kind in the world. Co-founded by the inventor of the World Wide Web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee and pre-eminent UK data scientist, Professor Nigel Shadbolt, it’s funded by the Government’s Technology Strategy Board. The organisation is central to a Government commitment to making sure that data is captured and converted into usable formats in order to boost the economy and incubate new business ideas. With huge quantities of data to process, it was vital that the project had super-fast, reliable connectivity.
Following an initial service agreement with another supplier, the ODI was let down by poor service and limited communication. With hopes of meeting their launch deadline fading fast, the ODI looked to Virgin Media Business to deploy a network that was capable of delivering speeds of 100MB/s. It was up and running within a month, and now the organisation has the bandwidth it needs to handle and manage data at speed, safe in the knowledge that it’s completely secure.
Based in London’s Shoreditch, the organisation is right on the doorstep of a thriving group of innovative British start-ups. Some of these local businesses have already been invited to come in and use the ODI’s facilities and the fibre network has proved that it’s more than up to the job.
With expansion prospects on the horizon the ODI wanted a network that could give them room to grow. The network connection is giving them the flexibility they need to support the organisation’s activities, both now and in the future.
Tim Organ, associate, operations at the ODI said: “Data is behind the government and business decisions that shape our everyday lives. At the ODI we’re trying to harness the power of data to help make those decisions better informed and that’s why having powerful connectivity is absolutely essential. We’re talking about vast quantities of data here, and because of the way it’s used you need a fast and secure internet pipe to ensure that it’s analysed quickly and accurately.”
“We couldn’t have opened for business on time without the support of Virgin Media Business. They completed the rollout at a pretty astonishing rate and everything went ahead without a hitch meaning that we could concentrate on making sure the other parts of our project were 100% on track,” he concluded.
Mark Heraghty, Managing Director at Virgin Media Business said: “Whether you’re talking about healthcare, transport and crime prevention, or open data on companies, contracts, spending and procurement, we all stand to benefit from what the ODI is doing for data availability. That’s why we’re extremely pleased to be supporting such an innovative project like this. Our willingness to challenge the norm and come up with propositions that are truly unique is really important to us as a business, and we’ve found real common ground with the ODI. We’re looking forward to seeing what open data can achieve for business and society and to continuing to work closely with the team in order to help them achieve their ambitions.”