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Archive for February 8th, 2009

02.08.2009 DorobekInsider newsbytes

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Dr. Mark Drapeau has a wonderful column in ReadWriteWeb headlined Government 2.0: The Rise of the Goverati

What is the goverati? It is made up of people with first-hand knowledge of how the government operates, who understand how to use social software to accomplish a variety of government missions, and who want to use that knowledge for the benefit of all.

The goverati includes not only government employees, but also people from think tanks, trade publications, and non-profits. And it includes high-profile thinkers outside of the government who have an interest in a more open, transparent, and efficient government; people such as Joe Trippi, Craig Newmark, and Tim O’Reilly. Using formal and informal social networks, the goverati is networking, sharing information, and changing how parts of the government interact with each other and with citizens.

Read the full post here.

DorobekInsider in Signal… The February issue of Signal magazine is out and it includes my column, Government Needs to Find Balance in Oversight

A simple solution is the acknowledgment that these are difficult issues and that mistakes are not necessarily waste, fraud or abuse. People have to make decisions at certain times based on certain data. Most people simply are trying to do the best job they can. The public must recognize that mistakes can and will happen. Yet another truism is that we tend to learn more from our mistakes than we do from our successes.

Greater transparency also is needed throughout the process. Currently, not enough data or decisions are fully shared. Better decision making is a direct result of better data sharing, so technologies and capabilities enabling this sharing should be made more widely available. Greater transparency is unlikely to happen without across-the-board acknowledgement that mistakes can, will—and even should—be made. People are unlikely to share their mistakes in the current framework, where those revelations can result in public recriminations.

The Personal Democracy Forum’s TechPresident blog has a piece on Britian’s Open Government report , including a link to the DorobekInsider’s post on the report. (TechPresident says that Dorobek — me — “writes a top blog for the Federal IT community.” Wow! Thanks!) A reminder that the author of the UK report will be on Federal News Radio 1500 AM’s Daily Debrief with Chris Dorobek and Amy Morris on Monday as part of our regular “Meet the Innovator” series .

The DorobekInsider — yes, me — was also on WCBS in New York — a program called Dishin’ Digital — talking about government IT and the Obama PDA. [The MP3 can be heard here.] And yes, I’m getting over my bitterness about them misspelling my name — and not mentioning either Federal News Radio 1500 AM nor the blog. Instead, it’s this: “Tech expert Chris Dorobeck — there is no “C” — talks about the phone that could replace President Obama’s Blackberry and the technological state of the White House.

Some other reads — and none of the rest involve me, thank goodness…

ExecutiveBusiness has a interesting round-up of what government contractor CTOs say about the year ahead. And they spoke to the rock stars. But one of the more interesting write-ups comes from IBM’s hyper-smart Dave McQueeney…

“2009 is going to be about the responsible use of existing technology to provide accountability and traceability. As the government starts making investments — whether for stimulus investments or the TARP program, for example — we in industry are going to be responsible for implementing the mechanics of those systems, which will be focused on achieving mission outcomes, while also providing the public with a view of both accountability and traceability.  There’s some exciting new technology that’s been developed and deployed recently that can instrument IT systems to track business outcomes.  The bottom line is that through a better understanding of an agencies data, delivering mission critical information, or improving citizen services through the use of technology all leads to an important outcome — smarter government.”

Read insights from CTOs here.

NextGov’s TechInsider reports that Roger Baker is being vetted for the VA CIO job. (I’ve been hearing a similar buzz.)

President Lincoln (Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress via

President Lincoln (Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress via

The Flickr blog posts about the Library of Congress posting portraits of President Lincoln. The Library of Congress blog has more… and there is a Lincoln exhibit celebrating Lincoln’s bicentennial opening at the Library of Congress. It is called “With Malice Toward None: Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Exhibition.” Read more about the exhibit here… and the “online exhibit” here.

And Craig Newmark — that’s the “Craig” of Craig’s List — is now a member of the government social networking site GovLoop.

And, just for fun…

Written by cdorobek

February 8, 2009 at 12:36 PM

Happy Birthday to GovExec/NextGov’s Bob Brewin

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Bob Brewin (right)

Bob Brewin (right, Photo courtesy of the DOD Military Health System)

A very happy birthday to Bob Brewin, the long-time defense reporter who has recently become a blogger for Government Executive’s NextGov. (Frankly, I remain a bit baffled why NextGov continues to bury Brewin’s always enjoyable columns/blog. Agree or disagree with him — and there are plenty of people who do both — Brewin is a wonderful character who captures insights that are difficult to find anywhere else. Why wouldn’t one make him the cornerstone of your Web site? Instead, he is a barely findable tap.)

I had the pleasure of working with Brewin while I was at Federal Computer Week. Brewin does his thing from out in Las Vegas, NM — as Bob points out, it is the original Las Vegas. Las Vegas, NM is this remarkable place in the world that sits literally right where the maintains meets the plains.

Brewin — and, I might add, 1105 Government Information Group’s production guru Rose Johnson — share their birthdays with journalist Ted Koppel (69), composer John Williams (77)… also, some birthdays from history… also born on this date were Lana Turner, who died in 1995 at the age of 74, and James Dean, who died in 1955 at the age of 24. It was also on this date in 1006 that, in a ceremony at the Library of Congress, President Clinton signed legislation revamping the telecommunications industry, saying it would “bring the future to our doorstep”… and in 1693, the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia is granted a charter by King William III and Queen Mary II.

More events after the break…

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Written by cdorobek

February 8, 2009 at 11:21 AM

Posted in birthdays, Circuit