Frequently Asked Questions : Milton Keynes intelligence (MKi) Observatory


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Frequently Asked Questions


Frequently Asked Questions

What is the MKi Observatory and how does it work?

The MKi (Milton Keynes intelligence) Observatory is a local information system (LIS) that is managed by Milton Keynes Council. To find out more please click on the link below

Where does the data and information published on this system come from?

The Observatory enables data from a wide range of sources to be held together on one system. The data and information published on this system comes from a variety of sources including departments within Milton Keynes Council (eg. the Milton Keynes intelligence Team, Education, Environmental Services), partner organisations (eg. Thames Valley Police, Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service, NHS Milton Keynes) and government organisations (eg. ONS, CLG, Census).

Why should I register?

Registering allows users to access more resources, manage their own resources, and participate in the site with other users.

How do I register?

If you would like to register, but have not done so, please see the Registration page which will allow you to submit a registration request.

Can other users see the details I entered during the registration process?
  • Registered before May 2008:

If you had registered on the previous MKi Observatory site (before May 2008) then it will depend on what settings you had selected during the registration process.

To find out how to view and amend the permissions of your details please see ‘How do I change who can see my details?’.

  • Registered after May 2008:

If you registered on the new MKi Observatory (after 1st May 2008) you will have accepted ours Terms of Use which links to our Privacy Policy which states:
‘The default disclosure level for the data you have supplied is that it is available to all other registered users’.

To find out how to view and amend the permissions of your details please see ‘How do I change who can see my details?’.

How do I change who can see my details?

To find out who can see your details you will need to:

  • Log onto the site using your email address and password
  • After you have successfully logged in please click on your username that should have appeared towards the top of the homepage
  • View the Permissions section which will tell you which user(s)/user role(s) can view your details
  • To make any changes to your permissions please click the Edit Permissions link
How do the user roles work?

Each registered user on the site has a user role. A brief outline of the user roles is outlined below:

  • Anonymous – Anyone who has not logged onto the site
  • Member - A registered user of the site. Members can contribute some resources but they require approval by a Knowledge Manager before they can be seen by others
  • Author – A registered user who can approve their own resources
  • Knowledge Manager – Members of the MKi Team
Forgotten your password?

If you have forgotten your password a new one can be issued by selecting the forgotten password link:
Forgotten Password

You will need to know the e-mail address you registered with in order to reset your password.

How do I give feedback?

If you have any questions or comments regarding this website or the services offered, please let us know! We want to provide you with the best service we can and want to hear from you. Please visit our feedback form if you would like to submit a question or comment.

What software do I need to use the site?

The following free software is required to use the site to its full capabilities:

Many of the resources held on the site are:

  • PDFs
  • Word documents
  • Excel spreadsheets
  • PowerPoint presentations

If you do not have the required software on your computer to view these formats you may need to download a viewer/reader:

Please note: Your IT System Administrator may need to do this for you.

What is a resource?

A resource can be many things. It can be an event, a paper, a report, a table of data, a map, or even a person, and so on. Essentially any item that is relevant to the future health, growth and development of Milton Keynes that can be shared is worth adding to the site.

How do I contribute a resource?

If you have a resource and want to share it you can make your resource available to everyone or to registered users only. You must be a registered user and logged on before you can contribute. Once you have logged on, follow the Share information link on the home page and select the type of resource you want to contribute.

How do I find resources?

The search box at the top of the page will allow you to quickly search titles, descriptions and other content of resources on this site. The search results page will then offer you additional sorting and filtering options.

How can I find my own resources?

When you are logged in, you can find your own resources by following the link to My home page on the left hand strip. This is your own home page and contains some of your most recently added resources.

How can I take part in discussions?

The Forum acts as a meeting place for people to share their views on topics and resources. Discussions are grouped under various categories - if you visit one of these categories you will be able to start a new topic or continue an existing thread.

What are blogs?

Blogs are mini websites whose contents come from users. If you are a member of this site you may be able to set up your own blog for recording your thoughts, or useful places you have visited online etc.

Which web browsers is the MKi Observatory compatible with?

This site has been developed to meet the latest web standards, such as XHTML and CSS.  Any browsers that follow these standards should be compatible.

Can Mac users use the site?

Mac Users may experience problems with the Mapping module.  

I cannot get the mapping module to work.

If on selecting a mapping theme the map does not appear in the window or you get a log in screen the problem may be related to your Internet cookie handling options.  Please try the following:

  • Select Control Panel > Internet Options > Privacy > Advanced.
  • Select Override automatic cookie handling.
  • Check the box at the bottom of the panel 'Always allow session cookies'.
  • Select 'OK' and close the Control Panel.

Select the required map resource again and the mapping module should work.  You will only need to do this once.  Every time you discover a mapping resource in the future it should now display correctly within your browser. 

If you still cannot get the Mapping module to work you will need to download the Java software.  You may need to get your IT System Administrator to assist with this.

I cannot get the thematic mapping module to work when using the data analysis module.

To get the thematic mapping component of the data analysis module to work you will need to download Adobe SVG Viewer software to your computer.  You may need to get your IT System Administrator to assist with this. 

Can I establish a site group?

Site groups provide a restricted web presence to members of a group.  If you wish to establish a site group please <resource not found: PAGE 1720 1026>.

I am a member of a site group. How do I access my group area?

To access your site group please:

  • Log onto the site (some site groups contain restricted content)
  • Click on the link to ‘Site Groups’ which can now be found on the top menu bar (between ‘FAQs’ and ‘Partners’)
  • Select the group that you are a member of
  • You will see a link to the group’s homepage
  • You may also see link(s) to specific pages/resources of the group which are displayed for convenience
Can I use the data and information from the system in my own documents?

Yes, as long as you comply with our Terms and Conditions and quote the MKi Observatory system as your source, along with any publisher and copyright information that can be found on the associated metadata page.

Do other local authorities also have Observatories?

Please click on the link below to access links to other local observatories/research pages/statistical information:

Where can I access more information and data?

Please click on the link below to access links to other useful data websites:

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