Gov 2.0: Unified Communications Meets Social Networking

Were you distracted by iPad mania and overlook this year’s Emerging Communications Conference that was held this week in San Francisco?  I did.  eComm is the successor to the short lived  O’Reilly  eTel conference. The talks and presentations all looked quite tasty, and I’m hoping videos will be made public soon.

In any case, I  stumbled across a slide deck delivered at eComm by electronic government evangelist Mark Headd. (Check out Mark’s excellent blog, Vox Populi.) In it he describes a few practical projects involving on-line government docs, cloud-based telephony, and crowdsourcing-social networking, areas that I’ve been focusing on recently.Serendipity is the “technical” term for this kind of luck. (I’ll let you know when the Hunch recommendation service sends me something as worthy!)

The Gov 2.0 initiative is another example of lots of tech trends coming together at the right time.  Public documents and information (some of it real-time) made available over the Internet. Add in standards-based formats (RSS, JSON,XML) and sweat-free cloud-based UC software (from tropotwilio, cloudvox, et al.). Result:  citizens interacting  with their governments across multiple channels—SMS, IM, voice, and Web.

I learned from Headd’s  presentation of  an exiting  open-source project from the New York State Senate that tracks the progress of bills as they move through the legislative process.

Let’s see, if I can hook the Senate feed up to some PHP code and then use Tropo….  I’ll let you know what I come up with.

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