John Mertens2011 Fellow

John is a full stack developer with an emphasis on rapid prototyping and data wrangling. During his fellowship, John was involved in 9 different CfA projects, won multiple coding contests, and liberated thousands of data points. Before Code for America, he was a web developer at Alientation Digital, one of the top digital agencies in Scotland, where he built over 50 unique websites per year on open source software. In addition to traditional websites & e-commerce sites, he also built a civic app for self-evaluation of all Scottish Social Service workers. He earned a BS in Computer Science with a minor in Mathematics from Iowa State University.

Posts by John

See Click Mural

Posted on by John Mertens


Moments after giving a talk on open data and code reuse at the Code for America Summit, Ben Berkowitz (SeeClickFix) and Aaron Ogle (CfA) grabbed me and said, “can we make a simple map mashup of all the murals verses …

A Data Liberation Walkthrough

Posted on by John Mertens

Screenshot of Public Art mobile website

Last time I wrote about how to build a US-wide farmers’ market API in under an hour. Today, I want to walk through a larger challenge to highlight some of the tools & techniques we are using at Code for …

Farmers’ Market API

Posted on by John Mertens


I love getting my fruit and veggies from my local Farmer’ Market.Ai??Unfortunately, as a recent SF transplant I wasn’t sure how to find my local Farmers’ Market.Ai??A quick search led me to a USDA website which seemed to contain most …

Meet MuralApp

Posted on by John Mertens

MuralApp screenshot

Today, Code for America is proud to release MuralApp, a mobile website that connects people in Philadelphia to murals and public art around the city. Using the app, anyone with a smartphone can see where murals are across the city, …

PHL API Arrives

Posted on by John Mertens


Philly Tech Week kicked off this week with the unveiling of the data catalog. CfA’s contribution to the catalog comes in the form of PHL API – a RESTful API of Philadelphia-related geospatial data. This data can be used …

John Mertens: Why I’m Coding for America

Posted on by John Mertens

Being a web developer, I am constantly trying to solve problems in the most efficient way possible. The flip side to this mindset is that I see inefficient or ineffective solutions all the time, usually stemming from improper use of …