[open-sustainability] Open Platform project
michael.saunby at metoffice.gov.uk
Mon Feb 24 12:16:35 UTC 2014
The Open Platform project was shut down in favour of this project and its commercial twin - CEMS.
The Met Office folks from the Open Platform project left soon after. I can't say I miss them and agree that it wouldn't have be open in the sense of "free" data, if that's what is mean. Ok, not data is ever free, so perhaps "free at the point of use". Weather data globally costs billions of dollars each year, but the collection is largely funded through taxes, commercial aviation and utilites.
P.S. ran another fun hack in Brighton at the weekend - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnCjy3iXk1s http://online.wsj.com/article/PR-CO-20140219-908942.html
From: Owen Boswarva [mailto:owen.boswarva at gmail.com]
Sent: 21 February 2014 12:38
To: Jack Townsend
Cc: Saunby, Michael; open-sustainability Sustainability
Subject: Re: Open Platform project
Hi Jack, I'll see what I can find out.
I tweeted the original article back in 2011:
and then lost track of the project. Highly doubt it's open data in any real sense though.
The article below was in the FT last month. Some of the players are the same so it might be related but not sure yet.
Last updated: January 26, 2014 7:31 pm
Insurers shake up disaster modelling
By Alistair Gray in London
Insurers are aiming to transform the way in which natural disasters are modelled with a groundbreaking system of their own as the industry tries to scale back reliance on outside specialists that critics warn exert undue influence on premiums.
The new venture, which 22 insurance groups including Allianz, Zurich and the Lloyd's of London market have clubbed together to set up, is due to be launched next week.
The project, which has backing from other institutions including technology group IBM, the UK's Met Office and Columbia University in New York, is the latest sign of the industry's determination to better understand its exposure to costly disasters.
Catastrophes including floods three years ago in Thailand that cost insurers more than $15bn, proved more costly than the industry projected partly because they were inadequately modelled.
Companies including AIR Worldwide, Eqecat and RMS have carved out a lucrative niche selling models to insurers, which use them to help price their policies.
They combine disciplines ranging from actuarial science to geology and analyse complex data to estimate losses arising from hypothetical disasters.
Examples include assessing the maximum damage to infrastructure from a hurricane by simulating various projected strengths and paths.
However, some executives have that warned the industry relies too heavily upon what critics call proprietary "black boxes".
Existing modelling companies are already trying to respond to the industry's calls for more flexibility. Silicon Valley-based RMS, a subsidiary of the UK's Daily Mail and General Trust, plans to launch its own cloud-based platform in April.
But backers of the new "open source" system believe it offers a more transparent alternative to the existing offerings.
One insider likened the framework to Linux, the free computer operating system whose kernel forms the base of Android, which is widely used in mobile phones.
It is being billed as a "toolkit" that will create common technical standards and facilitate the development of models developed by insurers, brokers and others.
The not-for-profit venture aims to allow insurers to more easily utilise data from parties such as universities and other researchers and create a more open market for models.
At its forthcoming launch in London, backers are likely to say the new system will complement existing systems. Privately, however, people involved say that it ultimately should help insurers, which spend millions of pounds a year on models, cut costs.
The scheme is also being backed by brokers Aon Benfield, Guy Carpenter and Willis.
The industry is demanding more transparency from models partly because of regulatory pressure under the forthcoming Solvency II rules to ensure executives fully understand the risks they are taking.
Executives have raised concerns that adjustments to the assumptions that underpin the proprietary models can lead to abrupt changes in their projected losses.
Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2014.
On Fri, Feb 21, 2014 at 11:23 AM, Jack Townsend <jack at jacktownsend.net<mailto:jack at jacktownsend.net>> wrote:
Hi Owen, Mike
Do you know what came of this 2011 project to research an "open" platform an "online marketplace to exchange knowledge, data and modelling techniques between the government, disaster risk reduction and insurance sector".
Quick google doesn't turn up anything on it from the the last year.
Was this open data in any sense?
Web, Open Data & Sustainability University of Southampton
@JackTownsend_ <https://twitter.com/JackTownsend_> jack at jacktownsend.net<mailto:jack at jacktownsend.net>
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