AppSheet can build apps using data hosted by Socrata, a data platform that hosts databases published by public institutions and government agencies.
Socrata is available as a free data provider to all AppSheet users. With Socrata, you can build apps using public data such as your city's building permits, the budget of your local government, or the locations of police stations in your neighborhood.
To add Socrata as a data provider for your app, simply choose Socrata as the data source each time you create a new app or add a new table to an existing app.
Once Socrata is chosen, you will see a list of institutions/organizations with data hosted on Socrata.
Choose an institution of your choice, and a list of all the data categories available from that institution will be displayed. Simply choose a category, and then select a table to use it in your app.
The large amount of data available from Socrata may make it hard to find the right table for your app. Here are a few tips to make the process easier:
- Check out different organizations. For instance, if you are looking for data about the budget of a certain government agency in Seattle, try looking in data.seattle.gov, performance.seattle.gov, or capitalprojects.seattle.gov.
- Try searching in more than one data category. For instance, if you are looking for data about wages, instead of searching only in the "economy" category, also try other relevant categories such as "demographics" or "finance".
- Data tables from public institutions and government agencies are not always named in an easy to understand manner. Try out different tables to see what kind of data they store.
If you still cannot find a suitable table using AppSheet table explorer, you can always use Socrata Open Data Network search tool: https://www.opendatanetwork.com/
It is important to note that all Socrata tables are read-only. This is because tables from Socrata are published and owned by third-party organizations, and thus cannot be modified. However, you can combine Socrata data with tables from any other providers supported by AppSheet. Also, by combining other AppSheet features, such as virtual columns, slices, workflow rules, UX views, etc. with Socrata, it is possible to build highly dynamic apps that allow you to take full advantage of public data.