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Joseph Marks

Staff Correspondent Joseph Marks covers government technology issues, social media, Gov 2.0 and global Internet freedom for Nextgov. He previously reported on federal litigation and legal policy for Law360 and on local, state and regional issues for two Midwestern newspapers. He also interned for Congressional Quarterly’s Homeland Security section and the Associated Press’s Jerusalem Bureau. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s in international affairs from Georgetown.
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Wanted: Innovators

August 1, 2012 In mid-2010, the already frenetic Todd Park was in overdrive. President Obama had just signed the Affordable Care Act into law, the most significant reform of the American health care system since Medicare. It was Park’s job to figure out how government could use technology to make the law’s implementation ...

Tech Roundup

August 1, 2012 Inside Job The Transportation Security Administration is shopping for a computer program to snoop into the online activities of agency employees, including their keystrokes and emails, for signs of potential leaks. TSA’s solicitation for an “enterprise insider threat software package” in June coincided with an Office of Special Counsel memorandum ...

Still waiting on the Twitter Archive

July 31, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Library of Congress has not backed away from its plan to archive every public Tweet ever. That was the big news in this recent Buzzfeed post. Just what the archive will look like and when it will be available is less clear, according to the post’s author John Herman. ...

Federal CTO Todd Park taps the private sector to drive innovation

July 27, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In mid-2010, the already frenetic Todd Park was in overdrive. President Obama had just signed the Affordable Care Act into law, the most significant reform of the American health care system since Medicare. It was Park’s job to figure out how government could use technology to make the law’s implementation ...

The Dot-Gov Footprint Is Inching Down

July 26, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow A governmentwide effort to slash the federal Web presence is clearly still on despite some indications it might be delayed by other elements of the government digital strategy launched in May. There are 1,122 top-level federal Web domains that are still active and not redirecting to other sites, according to ...

Disability rules complicate federal websites’ smartphone and tablet displays

July 26, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow With smartphone and tablet users making up a growing percentage of Internet traffic, many private sector websites have adopted responsive Web design, which can determine the type of device a visitor is using and then tailor its display accordingly. A visitor on a smartphone might see fewer menu options, for ...

Secret Service seeks commercial portal to access law enforcement networks

July 25, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Secret Service is looking for a commercial alternative to its in-house system for accessing two crime databases, according to solicitation documents posted Monday. The commercial system must access the National Crime Information Center, a database for federal, state and local law enforcement, and the National Law Enforcement Telecommunications System, ...

Something You Meant to Say? Don’t Let Death Stop You.

July 24, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The pharaohs once built massive tombs to telegraph their wealth and power to future generations. A Twin Cities company is now offering a more cost effective alternative, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune: a gravestone-embedded QR code that takes smartphone wielding cemetery walkers to a website with information about the ...

FDA seeks data mining tool to track adverse drug reactions

July 24, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Food and Drug Administration is in the market for a data mining tool that will gather information on adverse reactions to vaccines and other drugs, according to solicitation documents posted Monday. The agency expects the new tool to collect better information about potential problems with drugs that FDA already ...

Satisfaction with government websites inches up to a record high

July 24, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Customer satisfaction with federal websites hit a new high in the second quarter of 2012, but remains slightly below the average for all online and offline businesses measured by the consultancy ForeSee, the company reported Tuesday. The margins in both cases are so small as to be nearly nonexistent. Average ...