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New US Digital Service Looks to Avoid IT Catastrophes

BY Alex Howard | Wednesday, August 13 2014

USDS' Mikey Dickerson at the 2009 MySQL Conference (Photo by Jorge Bernal)

At a time when the public's trust in institutions is at historic lows, the federal government's use of technology has an unusual place in the national discourse. After the first Internet president's administration was responsible for the high-profile failure of Healthcare.gov, the issue seemed ripe to drive significant reform on Capitol Hill. Even if some 10 million adults gained health insurance through the Affordable Care Act after "Obama's trauma team" made successful fixes to Healthcare.gov, negative public perception has lingered, and for good reason. Under the radar, other projects have continued to sputter, like a $300 million dollar Social Security government IT boondoggle that still has not delivered a working system for submitting disability claims. The crash of the FCC's dated website under the weight of 1.1 million comments this summer didn't help, either. At the same time, the confidence of the technology community has been damaged by revelations of dragnet surveillance and surreptitious backdoors planted in software. Now, the executive branch has launched two new initiatives aimed squarely at these issues, 18F and the just-announced US Digital Service, Alex Howard reports. Read More

First POST: Some Comments

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, July 16 2014

The battle against CISA heats up; the FCC's servers melt down over net neutrality; Elizabeth Warren fans organize for her online; and much, much more. Read More

It's Time Again for Federal Employees to Help Un-'Stupid' Government Spending

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, July 14 2011

The federal Office of Management and Budget today announced the 2011 launch of the SAVE Award, a competition now in its third year in which federal employees submit their ideas to reduce waste and save money for ... Read More

New e-Gov Deputy CIO for U.S.

BY Nancy Scola | Thursday, June 2 2011

The U.S. gets a new deputy CIO doing electronic government work, reports Chris Dorobek. Meet Lisa Schlosser. Read More

Kundra's Choice: FedSpace R.I.P., Data.gov Soldiers On

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, May 24 2011

After Congress shrunk funding for the Electronic Government Fund as part of the recent budget debate, the waiting game has been on seeing what federal technology projects U.S. CIO Vivek Kundra would decide to cut, ... Read More

Issa Says Life Will Go on for Open Government Sites

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, April 18 2011

In his update on the state of play for open government funding, the Washington Post's Ed O'Keefe captures one objection to cuts in the electronic government funds -- things are just getting warmed up: Steven Aftergood, a ... Read More

White House Open Sources "IT Dashboard" Code

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, April 4 2011

Whether or not there will be real funds behind the Obama administration's open government projects in the next federal budget is still an open question, but one project, at least, seems as if it will live on either way. ... Read More

Say Goodbye to Data.gov?

BY Nancy Scola | Thursday, March 31 2011

The Obama White House is prepping to pull down open government sites like Data.gov, the IT Dashboard, and FedSpace, reports the Federal News Radio's Jason Miller, based on the comments of one anonymous government ... Read More

W.H. Reminds Agencies to Abide by "Technology Neutrality"

BY Nancy Scola | Friday, January 7 2011

This afternoon, the White House issued a memo reiterating to federal agencies its support for the "technology neutrality" approach to government IT procurement, one that encourages the consideration of tech ... Read More

SAVE '1o Uncovers the Obvious Things the Feds Could Do to Save Cash

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, November 8 2010

Last year's SAVE Award winner, Department of Veterans Affairs clerk Nancy Fichtner. Read More