Photo: U.S. Marine Corps

‘Smarter Faster Better’ government

I finished reading Charles Duhigg’s latest book, “Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business,” and in it are two great government-related anecdotes around motivation and agile thinking.

Left to right: Eric Jaye, Bergen Kenny, Danielle Winterhalter (Photo: SpeakEasy Political)

The long tail of political mail

Danielle Winterhalter, SpeakEasy co-founder and director of strategic partnerships, shares how they’re addressing a fundamental aspect of lowering the barrier to entry, especially when it comes to political (snail) mail, which is still more relevant than you might think.

Photo: Kevin Harber

Federal government progress in IT reform

The U.S. Government Accountability Office released a status report on federal government technology reform progress, and it’s an insightful read more than anything on the the lack of synchronization between agencies and GAO.

Nudging residents to better engagement

“Behavioral Insights for Cities” offers anecdotes into how governments can improve constituent engagement by implementing smarter messaging and design into print collateral, email, texts and online interactions.

Source: Wired

Obama ‘Wired’

President Obama served as guest editor for the November issue of Wired, and the entire print issue is worth investing in. Here are articles that might be of interest to those of you focused more on the civic and government technology fronts.

Defense Secretary Ash Carter speaks during a visit to Capitol Factory, Austin, Tex., September 14, 2016. (DoD photo by U.S. Army Sgt. Amber I. Smith)

Ash Carter wants to keep DOD weird

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced the DOD will open its third technology innovation “outpost” in Austin, expanding the reach of the Defense Innovation Unit Experimental that serves as a “bridge between those in the U.S. military executing on some of our nation’s toughest security challenges and companies operating at the cutting edge of technology.”

Delivering on Digital

‘Delivering on Digital’

I finished Bill Eggers latest book, “Delivering on Digital: The Innovators and Technologies That Are Transforming Government,” and highly recommend to public sector technology practitioners, especially governments who don’t have the resources to contract with a high-end consulting firm to build out a holistic strategy on their own.

Photo: U.S. Navy

DISA kicks off overhaul of federal background checks

The Defense Information Systems Agency has released a series of videos and request for information for the National Background Investigation System, created in the wake of security incidents that lead to data breaches of millions of federal government employees and contractors.

Photo: Code for America

Hack civic hacking

For those of you who identify as civic hackers and are unaffiliated with political, governmental or corporate constraints, you have the good fortune of not needing to adhere to bureaucratic, organizational rules that stunt open, immediate impact and innovation.

Pokémon Go

Pokémon Go(vernment)

For those focused on civic technology, Pokémon Go shatters the notion that an application whose brand and sole objective is civic-focused may never be as powerful and well-used as one tied into one with a consumer focus.