So much cool stuff has happened since I started working in the government. The most exciting thing now is that a load of government data sets have been opened up (both at a federal and state level). This is an ENORMOUS step forward towards more openness, transparency and accountability in government, and I am extremely excited about it!
Now, we seriously need to get our collective tech community butts into gear, and show why open access to data is important and awesome for democracy, society, collaboration and (warning, about to use the “i” word…) massive innovation and creativity.
There is a mashup competition running, supported by the Gov 2.0 Taskforce and there are currently 4 mashup camps running in Australia, including a huge one in Canberra called GovHack at the end of the month! There are also some events happening in Sydney hosted by Google and Open Australia.
So this is a shout out and call to action for all people passionate about hacking, Open Standards, FOSS, open democracy and open knowledge to come along and participate in, well, an enormous and wonderful turning point for our society!
I’ll be at the Canberra mashup camp (GovHack) for most of the time, and will be trying to get along to the Google events and the Open Australia one. I encourage all of your to do your own mashup camps within your communities, be it a FOSS user group, web 2.0 group, standards or any other sort of community. Let’s see if we can ge mashup camps happening all over Australia!
The events and competition are not just for technical people, so imagine how you might be able to use your skills to contribute to a mashup, and ultimately to a more open society.
Get hacking, mashing and have fun out there! Catch you online!
PS – for those who are wondering or concerned, yes the funding for the Taskforce is provided by Microsoft, however it is managed by and completely at the discretion of the Taskforce, led by Nicholas Gruen, who are a wonderful group with all the right ideas and principles on openness and access. Don’t let the mere involvement of any company or individual rob your of the opportunity to contribute to something so awesome, and to have your very important perspectives represented on the national and indeed global stage. A full explanation from the Taskforce which should clarify any concerns is on their website.