Entrepreneurs studying the density of target customers in a particular location no longer need to pore over pages of excel spreadsheet from the Department of Statistics.
Population information - including the number of people of a certain age group living in an area and their residence type - are now displayed on a map. So at one glance, one can tell if a certain location, say, Tampines or Hougang, has a high density of children aged 0 to four for setting up, for instance, more childcare centres.
Launched on Monday, the Population Query service is available on the Singapore Land Authority's (SLA) OneMap website. It is the result of overlaying 22 data sets - including age group, ethnic group and economic status - from the Department of Statistics on SLA's mapping data.
Announcing this, Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam said: "Population Query will be very useful for citizens, businesses and academics alike."
"For example, if you are thinking of buying a property, you may be interested in the demographics of the area, and at the same time you can see the schools, restaurants as well as property prices in the area - all at one glance," he added.
"Through smart and innovative use of technology, and by opening up more of our data, we can proactively crowd-source ideas and co-create applications with the wider community," said Mr Shanmugaratnam, adding that open data is a potential game-changer all over the world.
He was delivering the opening address at the 4th bi-annual eGov Global Exchange 2013 conference held at Marina Bay Sands. eGov Global Exchange is part of the week-long Infocomm Media Business Exchange 2011 (imbX) event, which features two shows: CommunicAsia, which focuses on telecommunication technologies, and BroadcastAsia, which focuses on media and broadcasting technologies.
The Population Query service is part of the SLA's continuous investment in OneMap, which has cost more than $2 million to develop to date. OneMap, a free service, was launched three years ago to give netizens access to location data belonging to the Government - including land ownership, recently transacted property prices for buildings and schools within one kilometre of a selected building.
To make Government data more accessible to the public, a central respository called Data.gov.sg was launched two years ago. It brings together more than 8,000 data sets - from traffic information to census data and unemployment rates - collated from over 60 government agencies.