Across corporate America, IT has transformed itself from the glass house to a fast-moving support organization that strives to be a true business partner" with internal clients. In many government agencies, though, employess would say IT is a business partner only in the same sense that the Soviet Union was a business partner with Poland.
CBS Interactive's Distinguished Lecturer David Gewirtz hosts ZDNet Government -- ZDNet's politics and policy coffeehouse -- where civics lessons meet technology, nothing is sacred, and everything is fair game.
David Gewirtz, Distinguished Lecturer at CBS Interactive, is an author, U.S. policy advisor, and computer scientist. He is featured in the History Channel special The President's Book of Secrets and is a member of the National Press Club.
Unlike the federal government, the Internet responded to Katrina with flying colors. By 12:40 p.m. PDT Tuesday, Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit.com was already reporting on what would become the Great Flood of 2005.By the end of the day, an online aid network was forming. Craigslist.org's lost and found forum for New Orleans was adopted to find missing people...
After La. Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco blasted telecom providers for failing to deal with the destroyed wireless infrastructure in the wake of Katrina - "The communications network is completely gone," Blanco said Sept. 1 - the FCC yesterday claimed the agency was working efficiently with industry to restore service.
David Berlind points out at Between the Lines that, while the state of Massachusett is immovably committed to the Open Document format - and will banish Microsoft Office from state agencies if Redmond refuses to support OpenDoc in new versions of Office - the federal government continues a policy of requiring citizens to use Microsoft Internet Explorer.
Officials at the Dept. of Health and Human Services are using the high-tech Secretary's Command Center in Washington, as well as a mobile command center based in Baton Rouge to respond to the health crises stemming from Hurricane Katrina.
The Massachusetts Dept. of Revenue knows more than most government agencies about monitoring employees' activities for illegal behavior. The Bay State's tax department started a program to protect the confidentiality of famous sports figures' tax returns 1992 but eventually realized they needed a comprehensive way to protect everyone's returns.
The number of cars zipping through East Coast tollbooths is ballooning, the Washington Post reports, as drivers take to the system and local governments consider building more toll roads without having to worry about traffic coming to a standstill at the tollbooth. The Post says: The effects of increased E-ZPass usage are significant.
Here are some news and blog perspectives on the showdown between Massachusetts and Microsoft over the state's insistence on the Open Document format.
The planning and preparation necessary to create a Sysadmin force that can respond to disasters like Katrina and the aftermath of Saddam Hussien will take money and resources on a scale that only government can provide.
Last week Massachusetts released proposed policies to standardize state documents on the Open Document standard used by open source programs like Open Office. The policy, which is open for public comment until Sept. 9, would essentially forbid the use of Microsoft Office applications that don't support that format. Microsoft has already said the next version of Office won't support that format, and Friday Microsoft executives lashed out at the state.