W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-egov-ig@w3.org > October 2012

Re: Clay Shirky: How the Internet will (one day) transform government

From: Adrian Walker <adriandwalker@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 10 Oct 2012 09:04:47 -0400
Message-ID: <CABbsESfd1i-OSy3HyEpcDQ3-AOLLCx0UL_jRrONwS9bSkKFrXg@mail.gmail.com>
To: John Erickson <olyerickson@gmail.com>
Cc: public-egov-ig <public-egov-ig@w3.org>
Hi John,

You wrote...

*in most successful open source projects there is a hierarchy of
contributors:
* Users --- use code, ask questions, suggest features, report bugs
* Developers --- implement fixes and new features, often teaming with others
* Committers --- top-level developers who decide what contributions
will enter the "trunk." In the best projects there are several, they
are wise and they vote fairly
* Project Lead(s) --- Usually an expeditor who helps set priorities.
Sometimes serves as the architect. Sometimes is the final arbiter.*

It's actually possible, and perhaps a powerful idea, to collapse the
hierarchy so that users *implement* features.

We are exploring this with a tool we call Executable English.  It's online
at the site below, shared use is free, and there are no advertisements.

Here's an example of source "code":

  www.reengineeringllc.com/demo_agents/EnergyIndependence1.agent

The system executes it directly, without the need for conventional
programming.

Here are some background slides for the above:

  www.reengineeringllc.com/EnergyIndependence1.pdf

  www.reengineeringllc.com/EnergyIndependence1Video.htm

There is locking, but apart from that there is no edit-control built into
the system.

Apologies if you have seen this before, and thanks for comments.

                                                    -- Adrian

Internet Business Logic
A Wiki and SOA Endpoint for Executable Open Vocabulary English Q/A over SQL
and RDF
Online at www.reengineeringllc.com
Shared use is free, and there are no advertisements

Adrian Walker
Reengineering




On Tue, Oct 9, 2012 at 8:37 PM, John Erickson <olyerickson@gmail.com> wrote:

> Thanks, Ed, for referring us to Clay's talk; as always he is a
> compelling and provocative speaker.
>
> I think the ultimate point to be taken from Clay's talk is that there
> exist today exemplars of tools and mechanisms that give large,
> distributed communities of stakeholder-creators transparency and
> insight into the sausage-making process. I don't think his point is
> about everyday citizens using a specific platform (such as git, or hg,
> or svn, or...) to draft legislation --- although that is fun to
> imagine! --- but rather that it actually *would* be practical for
> legislative staff and their...ehem..."collaborators" to use such tools
> as they drafted laws, and for citizen stakeholders to both monitor and
> provide feedback during the drafting process.
>
> What Clay didn't highlight is that in most successful open source
> projects there is a hierarchy of contributors:
> * Users --- use code, ask questions, suggest features, report bugs
> * Developers --- implement fixes and new features, often teaming with
> others
> * Committers --- top-level developers who decide what contributions
> will enter the "trunk." In the best projects there are several, they
> are wise and they vote fairly
> * Project Lead(s) --- Usually an expeditor who helps set priorities.
> Sometimes serves as the architect. Sometimes is the final arbiter.
>
> An open source process for crafting legislation would be no different.
> Indeed, teams writing laws today undoubtedly have low-level writers,
> "committers" and "leads." The difference between today's process and
> what (I think) Clay is suggesting is, as with open source software
> development, everything would be out in the open; users (concerned
> citizens, fellow lawmakers, journalists) would be able to monitor
> releases to the repositories, check out drafts at any point, diff the
> releases, see who contributed and committed what, etc.
>
> Which is quite different from the current process, in which the
> fingerprints of K Street contributors and other "stakeholders" have
> been obscured.
>
> John
>
> On Tue, Oct 9, 2012 at 7:31 PM, Chris Beer <chris@codex.net.au> wrote:
> >
> > +1
> >
> >
> >
> > Sent from Samsung Mobile
> >
> > Bernadette Hyland <bhyland@3roundstones.com> wrote:
> > Thanks Ed, great recommendation.
> >
> > Bernadette Hyland
> > Sent from my iPad
> >
> > On Oct 9, 2012, at 5:03, Ed Summers <ehs@pobox.com> wrote:
> >
> >> I imagine most of you have seen this already, but in case you haven't
> >> Clay Shirky's Ted Talk from earlier this year (recently posted) is
> >> really inspiring for those that care about the egov space:
> >>
> >>  How the Internet will (one day) transform government
> >>
> >>
> http://www.ted.com/talks/clay_shirky_how_the_internet_will_one_day_transform_government.html
> >>
> >> Near the end there's a segment that really sums up the challenge that
> >> this w3c egov-ig faces:
> >>
> >> """
> >> The people experimenting with participation don't have legislative
> >> power, and the people who have legislative power are not experimenting
> >> with participation. They are experimenting with openness. There's no
> >> democracy worth the name that doesn't have a transparency move, but
> >> transparency is openness in only one direction, and being given a
> >> dashboard without a steering wheel has never been the core promise a
> >> democracy makes to its citizens.
> >> """
> >>
> >> I encourage you to give it a listen.
> >>
> >> //Ed
> >>
> >
>
>
>
> --
> John S. Erickson, Ph.D.
> Director, Web Science Operations
> Tetherless World Constellation (RPI)
> <http://tw.rpi.edu> <olyerickson@gmail.com>
> Twitter & Skype: olyerickson
>
>
Received on Wednesday, 10 October 2012 13:05:15 GMT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.2.0+W3C-0.50 : Wednesday, 10 October 2012 13:05:15 GMT