White House Wants Agencies to Develop Mobile Technologies, Open APIs

Posted 25 May 2012 | By

A recent memo from the White House to the heads of executive departments and agencies directs them to immediately begin implementation of a new "digital strategy" aimed at making governmental information more readily and easily accessible to citizens and stakeholders.

The 23 May memo outlines the government's new information accessibility strategy, contained in an accompanying report entitled, "Digital Government: Building a 21st Century Platform to Better Serve the American People." The report is particularly interested in promoting "open data" and content through the use of mobile platforms and open Application Programming Interfaces (APIs).

"Today's amazing mix of cloud computing, ever-smarter mobile devices, and collaboration tools is changing the consumer landscape1 and bleeding into government as both an opportunity and a challenge," the report says. "To build for the future, the Federal Government needs a Digital Strategy that embraces the opportunity to innovate more with less, and enables entrepreneurs to better leverage government data to improve the quality of services to the American people."

Gizmodo notes that "as part of the plan, Data.gov, the federal government's one-stop shop for publicly available information, will soon include APIs which developers can take and build upon to their heart's content."

This development could mean FDA's trove of public data, including enforcement reports, inspection reports, approval information and other information, will be opened up to new and innovative platforms of dispersion.

The plan will be rolled out over the coming year, with agencies required within 90 days to establish a webpage (either www.fda.gov/digitalstrategy or www.hhs.gov/digitalstrategy) to "publicly report progress in meeting the requirements" of the report.

Read more:

White House - Memorandum for the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies

Digital Government: Building a 21st Century Platform to Better Serve the American People

Modern Healthcare - White House pushes mobile tech for all federal agencies

Gizmodo - White House Unveils Plan to Bring Government Into the Mobile Age


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