Active Government

A pet peeve of mine is seeing valuable content  go to waste.  One of the most notorious culprits are government services and websites.  I’ve visited my regional website today because I have a friend who works for the IT department and he let me know that certain mapping information will come available on the site.  I was excited about this… no really.  Community is important and keeping up-to-date on local issues should be everyones priority.  The site is, predictably, horrible, but that isn’t what the post is about (mostly).  The content is there!  There is all kinds of good things hidden in 99′, link-shrapnel styled site.  Now why don’t I know about this site?  Why doesn’t everyone in the Durham Region log onto the site and keep informed?  Because the Durham folks don’t try to advertise their site.  OK, I’m spoiled.  I’m part of the “now” generation.   I believe I shouldn’t have to work for anything and things should be brought to me.

Putting that aside, why don’t these types of site become a little more proactive?  Create a facebook page! Create a facebook app.  Advertise, start RSS’ing some events, do something creative to draw in some users.  I wouldn’t care if you put some advertisements on the site just increase your traffic.  Local governments can benefit greatly by communicating better with community.

One step closer to a Google PC

Ok.  I maybe have been a few years too late but… I called it!  The Google PC is here.  Well, not in so many words, but a step closer.  Everex (who?) is releasing a $200 lap top running Ubuntu Linux software.  Here are the specs: “1.5 Ghz VIA C7 CPU embedded in a Mini-ITX motherboard, 512MB of RAM and an 80GB hard drive”.   These computers will be sold in the states at Walmarts.

Now why do I call this a Google computer?  All of its embedded links are to Google apps.  Not really much of a justification but I think it is just the beginning.  With a company like Google behind Linux they might actually get off the ground.

I just read a very interesting article on topic.  The Google operating system.  They are building the most power computer in the world to run an online operating system.  Sounds a little Michael Crichton but who knows.