The DorobekInsider transparency, openness and reader

Friday - 5/22/2009, 9:25am EDT

Significant milestones for the Obama transparency initiative. And a lot of good stuff out there to read about it. The DorobekInsider “reader” series try to pull the best of those links together in one place. (Earlier, we had the DorobekInsider CTO reader.)

From the Obama administration

The White House has an over all fact sheet on the transparency and open government initiative. But some of the big sites…

The site:
This is the Obama open government Web site — the place from which you can find everything else.

The site:
One of the big initiatives by Obama CIO Vivek Kundra, and was done fairly quickly. When Kundra was the chief technology officer for Washington, DC, he created DC’s Data Catalogue, where machine readable data was posted online. From there, DC sponsored the now famous Apps for Democracy, where the District offered up a prize for the best applications developed using those data sets. The Sunlight Foundation is now conducting Apps for America 2, where there is a big prize for the best applications developed using data. More on that in a moment. Federal News Radio 1500AM’s Jason Miller spoke to Kundra about this. You can hear Miller on the Daily Debrief here… and his full interview with Kundra here. And here is what says aboug

Welcome to
The purpose of is to increase public access to high value, machine readable datasets generated by the Executive Branch of the Federal Government. Although the initial launch of provides a limited portion of the rich variety of Federaldatasets presently available, we invite you to actively participate in shaping the future of by suggesting additional datasets and site enhancements to provide seamless access and use of your Federal data. Visit today with us, but come back often. With your help, will continue to grow and change in the weeks, months, and years ahead.

How to use includes a searchable data catalog that includes access to data in two ways: through the “raw” data catalog and using tools. Please note that by accessing datasets or tools offered on, you agree to the Data Policy, which you should read before accessing any dataset or tool. If there are additional datasets that you would like to see included on this site, please suggest more datasets here. For more information on how to use, view our tutorial.

*  Suggest an idea
The Obama open government dialogue, where through May 28, the administration is seeking your ideas on transparency and openness. Like’s National Dialogue earlier this year, the open government dialogue is being run with the National Academy of Public Administration.

* Obama transparency and openness blog
Yes, there is a blog… andthe lead item describes the initiative and the announcements, and it includes a video from Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President, about this initiative. You can also read OMB Director Peter Orzag’s blog post about all of this here.

* Innovation gallery
The site includes a “gallery” of innovative ideas.

The Innovations Gallery celebrates the innovators and innovations who are championing the President’s vision of more effective and open government. In the Innovations Gallery, the public can browse examples of new ways in which agencies across the Executive branch are using transparency, participation, and collaboration to achieve their mission.

* The Jan. 21, 2009 Obama transparency memo
The President’s January 21, 2009, memorandum entitled, Transparency and Open Government, that directed the Chief Technology Officer, in coordination with the Office of Management and Budget and the General Services Administration, to develop a set of recommendations that will inform an Open Government Directive.