More from Medium on Gov Tech

Medium is posting even more about government tech. After the post about the “Alpha Geeks” in the White House Chief Technology Officer’s office, they’ve followed up with one on the people behind the US Digital Service (titled Stock Options? Don’t Need ‘Em! I’m Coding For Uncle Sam!) and another on how they’re working (A Government Techie’s Promise on Improving the Immigration User Experience: Yes, We’re Serious).

Like I said, Medium is on fire recently. Also, I love their signup and login process (no passwords)!

The Importance of Social Media for Gov

Dan Pfeiffer, former Senior Advisor to the President, took to Medium yesterday to talk about the importance of President Barack Obama’s new Twitter account, @POTUS. He makes three key points:

  1. Twitter (and really, social media in general) is the place to talk to the public.
  2. You have to “go where the conversation is happening” and “actively participate in it”.
  3. The President will have to be active on Twitter for this to work. He also notes, “Anything that breaks down barriers and brings the public and politicians closer together is a good thing.”

These apply to governments and not just politicians. Maybe even more so. It’s about time to stop pretending that public hearings, press releases (and newspapers), and town halls are the best place to interact with citizens. Those are three ways to meet your residents. I mentioned on Twitter last week, I think govs should use both online and newspaper channels (and every other way possible) to reach citizens.

Be Crazy Like Steve Jobs

I’ve read the Walter Isaacson biography of Steve Jobs. I’m waiting on a copy of Becoming Steve Jobs from the library. And I’ve been reading the disagreements over how Steve Jobs has been portrayed (Medium, NYTimes, Daring Fireball). All the fighting and PR seems to me to have gotten out of hand.

Steven Levy with Medium hits home:

In the long run, though, I believe that the disagreements about Jobs’s personality will have diminishing importance as future students of technology and culture seek to understand what Steve Jobs actually did, and how he did it.

Steven is right on, but it’s only a small point in a bigger article about the “war over Steve Jobs”.

The benefit of these biographies of Steve Jobs is learning about Steve’s mindset. He questioned every assumption in every project and made sure they aligned with a bigger vision. That’s what we need to remember about Steve Jobs. That’s what we need to focus on.

Do you want to change the world like Steve Jobs? I don’t think you need to read a book. Just be crazy: