Amidst all the talk about what’s wrong with government — and there’s plenty that can be improved — here’s some good news, courtesy of Government Computer News (a publication I’ve worked for and contributed to in years past).
The trade publication’s senior technology editor, Rutrell Yasin, has found “10 great public-sector websites,” and the results, ranging from the small city of Albany, Oregon to the Obama Administration’s Web portal, are interesting.
Mr. Yasin praises Albany for its fiscal transparency online, saying, “City officials have sorted and combined information to present it in a way that residents can easily understand.”
The White House garners Mr. Yasin’s approbation for basing its site on Drupal, an open-source content management system. He concedes, however, “[n]ot all its technology is open source, but even the proprietary components adhere to open principles, such as crowd-sourcing,” citing the comments of an official in the Executive Office of the President.
Mr. Yasin’s article, and the sites he profiles, are well worth reading. As Washington spars over the budget and what agencies can and cannot do, one can hope that transparency is something we all can agree upon. The sites mentioned offer some good examples of that.