Monday, January 15, 2007

Digital Bits

More reading from my bookmarks for the week, now deleted.

Pupils to Get Home Internet Access
Seems like a good idea to me, but why just pupils, what about pensioners, students, teachers, nurses, why not everyone?
That would fix the digital divide in one fell swoop

The Government are to Close 551 Web sites. Is this wise? If they were post offices, there'd be a fuss but they're not and I suppose we won't notice any difference to the service offered. The full list of the culled web sites can be seen here. Any of your favourites going?

Whenever I need anything on a Government website, I look for what I need through Google. Doesn't everyone else? This may not be the best move for a Government that has strugged with digital initiatives. Forcing everyone to access Government service via two entry points might just lead to system failures and queues at times of crisis. Remember what happened during the last food scares?

In contrast here is an excellent idea. Government Data Shake Up. Well done everyone involved. Perhaps now they will consider making the registers of births, deaths and marriages free as well.

While reading about Government I stumbled upon the brilliantly named
They Work For You, another Web 2.0 application which is "a non-partisan website run by a charity which aims to make it easy for people to keep tabs on their elected and unelected representatives in Parliament, and other assemblies."

Enter your post code and check out what your MP has been doing. Check out the numerology section, where all sorts of statistics on MPs can be found. I particularly enjoyed discovering how hard my MP, Julie Morgan works; and that that she has used three word alliterative phrases 144 times in debates; which is above the average amongst MPs. Well done.

Try the website, read about your MP, check out the numbers and then read the explanation which explains of the dangers of using statistics. All statistical web sites should carry health warnings.

I look forward to the day when this outstanding site includes the National Assembly in its output. Then we'll be able to check up on her husband too!

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