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Joseph Marks

Senior Correspondent Joseph Marks covers cybersecurity for Nextgov. He previously covered cybersecurity for Politico, intellectual property for Bloomberg BNA and federal litigation for Law360. He covered government technology for Nextgov during an earlier stint at the publication and began his career at Midwestern newspapers covering everything under the sun. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Wisconsin in Madison and a master’s in international affairs from Georgetown University.
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Getting the prize purse right in tech contests is a challenge all its own

September 7, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow What’s the toughest part about putting together a government-sponsored prize competition to develop new and innovative technologies? It’s not finding problems in need of a solution or drawing in competitors, according to Gregory Downing, executive director for innovation at the Health and Human Services Department. The toughest part is determining...

Now’s the time for federal innovation, CIO says

September 6, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Tight budgets aren’t the only things putting pressure on federal technologists these days, federal Chief Information Officer Steven VanRoekel said Thursday. There’s also pressure from cyberattackers that’s “unprecedented in its scope” and pressure from citizens trained by the private sector to expect convenient, Web-based systems for all their transactions, he...

Bringing the private sector into federal innovation

September 6, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Taking an innovative approach to social programs isn’t merely a matter of adopting new ideas, Jonathan Greenblatt said Thursday; it’s also about finding new funders. Greenblatt is director of the White House Social Innovation and Civic Participation Office, which is exploring ways to drive more financial support to social programs...

Pentagon Releases Radiation Exposure Estimates for Japan-Based Troops

September 6, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow A Defense Department website launched Wednesday provides estimates of radiation exposure for adults and children at 13 U.S. military bases in mainland Japan following the 2011 explosion at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant. The department plans to expand the site by the end of the year to include exposure...

DNC’s Twitter victory wasn’t won on a level playing field

September 5, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Michelle Obama’s ability to inspire nearly twice as many tweets per minute as Republican nominee Mitt Romney during her Democratic National Convention speech Tuesday night may have been due to more than being “personal and real.” The first lady had a home turf advantage. Democrats are significantly more likely than...

We the People nets more than 3 million signatures

September 4, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow More than 2.5 million people have signed online petitions posted to the White House’s We the People website since its September 2011 launch, according to its Tuesday blog post. Those people have appended more than 3 million signatures to about 46,000 petitions, the blog post states. We the People was...

DNC touts open government initiatives in party platform

September 4, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow This story was updated to note that the GOP platform did not address open government. Democrats used their party platform, posted online Tuesday, as an opportunity to tout transparency advances under the Obama administration such as the president’s Open Government Initiative and the government information trove Data.gov. The platform praises...

Tech Roundup

September 1, 2012 Cellular Revolution The Veterans Affairs Department is looking to consolidate its cellphone billing into a national contract that covers voice and data airtime, as well as hardware such as smartphones and tablet computers. The national mobile device and services contract would include the department’s 300,000 employees in all 50 states,...

Powering Down

September 1, 2012 Government data centers work like any other factory. They produce something: in this case, the computer systems that power websites, manage payrolls and store vital information. They also have to eat up raw materials to do it: the electricity that runs those banks of computer servers and the air conditioning...

Agencies continue to struggle with FOIA requests

August 31, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Some agencies have made progress in reducing their backlog of Freedom of Information Act requests since a 2009 directive, but the logjam has increased at other agencies, according to a watchdog report released Thursday. Only about half the 16 agencies studied in the Government Accountability Office report managed to reduce...