Recently conceived at a LocalGov Makers Hack Day, Localo is attempting to improve UK government waste management services by developing data specifications for use in an API and web services.
The goal is to set standards across government councils and IT systems. This "end-to-end" automation is expected to decrease overall program costs, and even allow smaller authorities to deploy automation.
The API is expected to enable users to quickly check bin collection times. It is also assumed that this standardization would help prevent vendor lock-in.
"A more modular architecture has the potential to reduce reliance on a single supplier by allowing components to easily be replaced without having to redevelop neighboring systems," writes LocalGov web developer Ben Cheetham. "It can also help increase competition between suppliers and support new entrants including civic coders because they don’t have to supply an all-or-nothing solution and the specification for the interface is open."
It is also Cheetham's belief that Localo can help to increase collaboration and industry innovation through sharing and syncing open web data regardless of internal system architecture.
Development of the Localo specification is in an Alpha state. Currenly an open Trello page is tracking user suggestions and being used as an industry research tool with the aim to priotize development features and increase overall user experience.