Free Our Data – On the Quiet

Seems like the National Archives went it alone and got a Government BarCamp off-the-ground. Kudos – though pity it was done on the quiet.

Michael Cross has penned a nice account – essential reading for anyone attending or interested in the upcoming BarcampUKGovweb on Saturday. Their Barcamp wiki is still online.

Barcamp dropout

I’m a Barcamp drop-out – it’s official.

BarcampUKGovweb takes place on Saturday 26th and I was planning to be there, meeting people, having a good time and maybe even solving a few issues the government has with the web. Instead I’m off to my friend Michael Raftery’s stag weekend (it’s going to be a blinder!).

So I wish everyone going to BarCamp the best, I urge them to use the day to make a constructive contribution, and I’d like to give a shout to Jeremy and Michelle for all the work they’ve put into it.

If, like me, you are interested in what goes down on the day, go to the wiki page where you can find all the details and a list of those people who will be blogging from the event.

When someone is trying to make conversation, it’s rude to ignore them

The Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS) is one of the new kids on the Whitehall block. The department has been established to steward the Government programmes that foster a dynamic, knowledge-based economy. And with a Minister like John Denham at the helm, the outlook is good.

A while back I picked up on a consultation DIUS was staging on innovation and how it should be sustained in the UK. Originally based on a conventional set of questions and an invitation to send in a response, I spotted that DIUS have now ‘upgraded’ the exercise with a consultation microsite.

The opportunity to get involved in a consultation about the contribution of innovation to the UK’s competitiveness is welcomed. The exercise has a particular focus on science and innovation policies and is open until January 31st 2008. I’m going to respond where I can (science and innovation is not exactly my area of expertise) and would urge others to get involved in order to demonstrate the depth of interest and the breadth of the innovation practitioner community. Continue reading “When someone is trying to make conversation, it’s rude to ignore them”

This year the internet will eat us alive

I posted a wee rant about online petitions last week and I feel better for having got it out my system.

Truth is, the stuff on e-Petitions was more of a preamble to cue up some links to some 2008 technology predictions I had been reading.

There has been a lot of crystal-ball action on the go; all of it trying to be ahead of the rest but bang-on at the same time. An impossible task.

In the end, the two predictions that stayed with me were those posted at Twenty Steps and this one by Robbie Wilkinson:

The Internet Will Eat Us Alive

2008 – Getting the skinny

2007 was the year of the online petition.

Downing Street invited the great British public to create and sign petitions on its website. Millions duly did and what an ‘insight’ it was. The media lost interest after a couple of months, but in eDemocracy conferences it was impossible to escape ‘the great petition debate’.

The BBC had a go. They mobilised an e-petition as part of the ‘Free Alan Johnston’ campaign. They got about 200,000 signatures from all over the world.

And even burger punters, McDonalds, had a stab. invited us to help MaccyDees to pressure the UK’s dictionary houses into dropping or rewriting the definition of ‘McJob’, which is apparently not a word with positive connotations. They even had a ad up on the big flashy boards at Piccadilly Circus. Cheeky.

2007 was the year of the online petition. Gawd. Continue reading “2008 – Getting the skinny”