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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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Top tech official calls for new panel to help liberate government data

May 25, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Federal Chief Technology Officer Todd Park called on the White House’s team of science and technology advisers Friday to create a special subcommittee to advise his office on projects to disseminate government data to private sector developers and entrepreneurs. Park envisions the subcommittee of the President's Council of Advisors on ...

OMB exaggerated 25-point plan performance, GAO says

May 24, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Office of Management and Budget has fully completed only three of the 10 pillars of its information technology reform plan, despite having declared in December that it had closed out seven, a government watchdog told a Senate panel Thursday. The Government Accountability Office picked the 10 disputed agenda items, ...

White House seeks ‘badass innovators’

May 23, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow This story has been updated. The White House is seeking 20 high-powered Web and mobile developers for short-term assignments aimed at reducing the government’s online footprint, making agency data more accessible and rendering federal contracting less onerous for small businesses, federal Chief Technology Officer Todd Park said Wednesday. The Presidential ...

White House launches federal digital strategy

May 23, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow This story has been updated. The White House’s long-awaited Digital Strategy, released Wednesday, aims to ensure agencies manage mobile devices safely and affordably and to give citizens mobile access to everything from government websites and applications to raw survey and satellite data. The strategy, titled “Building a 21st Century Platform ...

Getting More Out of Technology

May 23, 2012 All About Face Time Since 2009, Brandon Friedman, director of online communications for the Veterans Affairs Department, has helped launch a VA blog, 150 Facebook pages and 70 Twitter feeds, all of which have garnered a wide audience of veterans. Though Friedman, a former Army infantry officer who served with ...

A Sweet Spot for Geolocation Apps

May 22, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow About three-fourths of smartphone users are taking advantage of mapping services to find their way around and nearly 20 percent are using “geosocial services” such as Foursquare to “check in” at stores and restaurants, according to a new report from the Pew Internet and American Life Project. The rise in ...

The Fine Print on Open Data

May 21, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Gartner analyst Andrea Di Maio filed an interesting blog post recently pointing out some pitfalls of the new open data revolution. The most interesting part of Di Maio’s argument, at its most basic, is this: if government isn’t analyzing the data, then you’d better start worrying about who is. Under ...

USASpending moves to big data cloud

May 21, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The General Services Administration has moved its USASpending.gov site, which tracks and analyzes federal expenditures, to a privately owned big data cloud, officials announced Monday. A big data cloud essentially is a computer cloud with a built-in way of crunching big data using the Apache Hadoop system. Hadoop is the ...

What Kind of Market Dominance Does Facebook Have?

May 18, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The latest in a series of articles about the poor performance of Google+ raised two big questions for me this week: First, just what kind of dominance does Facebook have in the social marketplace? And, second, what does that mean for agency public affairs staffers? The article, from Fast Company, ...

Initiative aims to reform government services around life events

May 16, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow A cadre of former federal information technology leaders has a novel plan for how to reduce billions of dollars in overlapping information technology services governmentwide: They want to look at the recipients of those services rather than at the agencies where they originate. The project, known as Smart Lean Government, ...