With projects ranging from safer Web browsing to a 21st century air traffic control system, federal, state, and local agencies demonstrate that they, too, can apply IT in critical and novel ways.
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TrackDC is a leading example of how municipal governments are making data available to citizens in new, user-friendly ways. The District of Columbia describes TrackDC as a "real-time dashboard." An ASP.NET application, TrackDC pulls information -- performance plans and metrics, budget and customer service data, agency documents -- from various sources into a web interface, and makes data available in machine-readable and other formats.
The initiative's goals include increasing accountability and public trust by providing better access to government data. There's also an internal version for city officials that has reduced the labor associated with developing reports and given city managers a window into operational effectiveness.