On the subject of why we love it when nonprofits share their data for the community good….
DonorsChoose.org is an online charity that connects potential donors with classrooms in need. They’ve facilitated over $80,000,000 in giving to thousands of public schools. They are currently running a contest called Hacking Education: A Contest for Developers and Data Crunchers that challenges developers to come up with apps that harness the unique data sets of their community to improve education in America.
If you or someone you know is a talented coder or data cruncher with a soft spot for great causes, send them over to DonorsChoose.org to participate by June 30, 2011. Judges will include Arianna Huffington, Joel Klein, Wendy Kopp, and Fred Wilson. A “Big Winner” from each of seven categories will get to meet and accept a trophy from Stephen Colbert, attend a taping of The Colbert Report, plus a variety of other prizes. The real prize, though, will be a warm, fuzzy feeling that you’re improving the American education experience.