Featured

How to be a ‘Start-Up City’

Former Chicago and District of Columbia transportation head Gabe Klein highlights eight lessons leaders should follow when building innovative approaches to better cities in his book “Start-Up City.”

California seeks chief data officer

The state of California is looking for a chief data officer to “promote the availability and use of data in state government.”

Insights from federal digital design leaders

Ethan Marcotte and Karen McGrane have been on a roll lately featuring federal government design leaders on their Responsive Web Design Podcast.

Say hello to ProudCity

Today, I’m excited to announce a new civic startup, ProudCity, founded by me and three others, committed to making it easier for cities to stand up and manage municipal digital services.

9 reasons why Vets.gov is the future of federal government websites

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs released a beta version of Vets.gov, and it’s the future of federal government digital development.

California commission wants the state to design a better government

A California bipartisan oversight committee, the Little Hoover Commission, has issued recommendations on how the state can bring a more customer-centric government to residents and visitors.

Romulus wants to make constituent relationship management more delightful

Seneca Systems CEO Chris Maddox shares the inspiration behind the new constituent relationship management system, Romulus.

Elon Musk as government innovator

After reading Ashlee Vance’s new Elon Musk biography, I find myself wondering whether we should really worry about bad government websites, and instead chalk them up as inspiration for those who will change the world.

USDS publishes design standards for federal government websites

The U.S. Digital Service has soft-launched new U.S. Web Design Standards to “create consistency and beautiful user experiences across U.S. federal government websites.”

What should governments require for their open data portals?

My fundamental suggestion is that government-run open data platforms be fully open source. There are a number of technical and procurement reasons for this, which I will address in the future, but I believe strongly that if the platform you’re hosting data on doesn’t adhere to the same licensing standards you hold for your data, you’re only doing open data half right.

White House moves to a more integrated, mobile-friendly blog

The White House continues to roll out a better mobile experience with a newly-designed White House blog.

San Francisco publishes year two plan, continues to lead on open data

San Francisco’s DataSF team continues to quietly and effectively demonstrate what an efficient, holistic and personable approach to open data looks like with the announcement of its year two plan and retrospective of the past year.

Re-thinking the whitehouse.gov homepage

Starting with its homepage, the White House is moving to a more mobile-friendly design.

USAspending.gov gets an official GitHub repo, feedback loop

For those unsatisfied with the recent USAspending.gov re-launch and would like to submit public feedback, there’s now an official GitHub repo for that.

It’s time for a national chief data officers council

As momentum around appointing public sector chief data officers grows, it’s time for the federal government to get ahead of the curve and create a formal chief data officers council similar to, but more inclusive, proactive and public than the already-established U.S. Chief Information Officers Council.

U.S. Department of Energy has a new chief data officer

According to a U.S. Project Open Data GitHub pull request, it appears the U.S. Department of Energy has named Dave Dutton as its chief data officer.

Talk to the hand: New Covington logo breaks government convention

I’m a huge fan of government re-branding to modernize away from the antiquated look of the traditional seal, mostly because I believe it can play a huge role in citizen sentiment and how employees see themselves and their roles as public servants.

Philadelphia launches alpha city website

The new site, located at alpha.phila.gov, is powered by WordPress with a custom theme that hopefully the city will open source at some point in the future.

City icons and Vocativ’s livability index

Vocativ published its 2014 Livability Index of the 35 best cities for people 35 and under, and the best part of it is the montage of city icons they created for the piece.

With BlueLight, there’s a 911 app for that

BlueLight founder and CEO Preet Anand shares his vision for re-inventing 911.

A new way to write to the White House

The White House has officially released the write version of the “We the People” application programming interface that now allows developers to feed data back into the petition platform via third-party applications.

Jan. 10: Celebrate your city on CityCamp Day

To celebrate the fifth anniversary of CityCamp, we’re encouraging cities across the world to celebrate CityCamp Day on January 10, 2015.

Big IT vendors, civic hackers and the future of ‘Smart Cities’

Much like “green” has done for the sustainability movement, the term “smart cities” has brought as much skepticism as enthusiasm for an ambiguous, over-marketed term used to describe the end product of the new urbanist movement.

DHS report outlines challenges, opportunities of open source in government

The report emphasizes the importance of case studies to highlight open source execution within government, bringing more awareness to support and warranty options, simplify code release process and increase education around license guidance and procurement.

Help get USDA to lead with APIs when it comes to America’s parks

As part of this work I’m always on the look out for valuable public assets across city, state and federal government, and help make sure the conversations around these assets always include application programming interfaces, so that we aren’t just building web and mobile applications in silos, and limiting the potential for public access by individuals and small businesses.

Analytics and outcome-based government

Michael Flowers shares insights into his time as the former New York City chief analytics officer at the NYC Office of Data Analytics under Mayor Michael Bloomberg at the 2014 Code for America Summit.

Defaulting to open: A foundation for data-driven decisions

San Francisco Chief Data Officer Joy Bonaguro shares her vision for the city’s open data future at the 2014 Code for America Summit.

Doubling down on government technology

We’ve recently seen an uptick in venture capital interest around government and civic technology startups, but before we enthusiastically celebrate these investments, we must ask ourselves whether this potential bubble will truly reshape government IT or simply leave us five years from now in the same place we are today.

Register for Data Transparency 2014

The Data Transparency Coalition will host Data Transparency 2014 on Tuesday, September 30, in Washington, D.C.

White House wants feedback on its open government website

The White House is looking for input on how it can improve the open government section of its website, located at whitehouse.gov/open.