Open Standards – A Call To Action

<a href="">Open Standards – A Call To Action</a> – <em>By Nick Gleason, CitySoft, Inc. and Zack Rosen, CivicSpace Labs Despite recent innovations, technology in politics and the social sector too often limits rather than enables people and organizations to collaborate, share information, and solve problems. The software development organizations…</em> [<a href="">nTEN Forecast</a>] As someone who has spent mane late nights trying to make to data sets play nice (member lists and a voter files) I can fully appreciate the importance of achieving some open standards for contact data. It was really a nice surprise to see this article from Nick and Zack (I've talked to both of you and looked at both products). I am reminded of this article by Tom Adelstein in the Consulting Times on the open standards in government databases issue. This quote is a good teaser: <block quote>"So, add all the separate naming schemes of local government databases together and you get 16,000 variations. Create a standard and it goes down to 2,000. Put those into categories of reusable components and you wind up with 300 database elements. That's why they call it a standard. It allows disparate systems to work together. It starts to open the window of a manageable task when the interoperable elements number 300 instead of 16,000." </block> If the nTen article was a call to action, how do we get started? Are there and ANSI standards to start from? or ISO? Maybe the Open Government Interoperability Project? would be interested in this. We really can't afford to wait.

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