What makes OpenCorporates strong is the community of talented and committed botwriters and data hunter who volunteer their time to contribute open data. Our bot writers or as we call them, Turboteers, work in their free time, to understand complex data sources, solving problems and writing scrapers to extract it. This is crucial to our mission of making company data transparent. In the Meet the Turboteers series, you’ll get a chance to meet them.
My name is Knut and I come from Berlin where I am currently finishing up with my Bachelors in Environmental Computer Sciences. Last year when the first #FlashHacks took place in Berlin at the OKFestival, I unfortunately was supposed to study for exams and just missed the event. I was very interested in the idea of writing bots as an interesting way of solving small puzzles, becoming a better coder and most importantly setting data free for people to use in interesting ways.
So it happened that even though I did not attend the event I started writing some bots instead of studying. It was so much fun and I was treated so nicely by the OpenCorporates team (this is important to point out, if you worry that you might not be good enough at handling the challenge you can just join the slack group where OpenCorporate’s employees as well as other volunteers will be very happy and open to answer your questions) that I decided to start the Berlin chapter of Flashhacks. We come together once a month to write bots, improve on our coding skills and learn from each other. I am also a member of codefor.de a group that uses open data in interesting ways. It’s fun to be at the creating as well as at the receiving end of open data I currently spend the rest of my time working on my Bachelor Thesis (unfortunately no open data in there) and enjoying the niceness of Berlin.
So if you are in Berlin make sure to come by our next #FlashHacks event by joining our meetup group. I’d be glad to get to know you!
You can also follow me on twitter: @notknut.