Code for America Archives - Accela

Tag Archives: Code for America

Trailblazing: San Francisco Erases Cannabis Convictions with Civic Tech

Accela
San Francisco
As more state and local governments legalize cannabis, San Francisco and the national civic tech organization Code for America (CfA) are showing how technology and policy can offer communities big benefits. San Francisco partnered with the nonprofit to expunge more than 9,000 marijuana convictions using the group’s Clear My Record App that helps counties clear non-violent felonies from residents’ criminal records. The app uses digital forms and an algorithm to help residents submit proper documentation to officials that meet California’s legal requirements to erase felony convictions. San Francisco officials said the effort to eliminate the 9,000-plus convictions was part of a year-long effort that looked at records dating back to 1975…. Continue reading

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Hacking for Civic Good at CodeAcross 2015

Mark Headd
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Code for America is holding its fourth annual CodeAcross event this month in the U.S. and around the world. On February 20 & 22 join government agencies, developers, community organizers and others for a weekend of civic hacking and open data innovation. This weekend coincides with International Open Data Day as well as the last weekend of the Code for America Fellows’ residencies in their partner cities.The CodeAcross events bring together passionate groups of people and provides an opportunity for them to get involved in their communities. This year’s theme for the event is Principles for 21st Century Government, including: Design for people’s needs Make it easy for everyone to participate Focus on what government can do Make data easy to find and use Use data to make and improve decisions Choose the right technology Organize for results Accela is thrilled to not only be a supporter of Code for America,… Continue reading

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Community-Building for Better Cities

Lawrence Grodeska
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What happens when you gather local officials, city staff, entrepreneurs, designers, developers, journalists and citizens in a room for one day, and ask for their best ideas to improve their communities? You get CityCamp – a lot of excitement, a little chaos, plenty of solutions and a whole lot of action. CityCamp is a national movement that brings people together to build stronger communities where they live. Core to the CityCamp model is the belief that local governments and community organizations have the most direct influence to make cities more open and “user friendly.” CityCamp provides a space for that to happen through locally organized “unconferences.” At an unconference,… Continue reading

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Open Data: From Coast to Coast

Mark Headd
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The last few weeks have been big for open data and civic innovation. Awareness of the power of open data, the new ideas it can help foment and the new apps and services it can support are spreading from coast to coast. On May 15, I had the pleasure to take part in the Open Data NJ Summit at Montclair State University. The event brought together experts on open data from the Sunlight Foundation, the U.S. Open Data Institute and others to present to local government officials and the journalism community on the power and promise of open data. The event featured presentations from, among others,… Continue reading

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Guest Blog: What Kind of Civic Innovator Are You?

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Nole Walkingshaw is Brigade Captain for Open Salt Lake as well as the Manager for Institutional Engagement, Community and Economic Development, for the City of Salt Lake. A new report by the IBM Center for The Business of Government titled, Engaging Citizens in Co-Creation in Public Services, defines four key roles members of the community can play in conjunction with their government. As explorers,citizens can identify/discover and define emerging and existing problems. As ideators, citizens can conceptualize novel solutions to well-defined problems. As designers, citizens can design and/or develop implementable solutions to well-defined problems. As diffusers, citizens can directly support or facilitate the adoption and diffusion of public service innovations and solutions among well-defined target populations…. Continue reading

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Open Salt Lake Brigade: An Inside Look

Kris Trujillo
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In my previous post, I shared how I came to discover Code for America, become involved and ultimately become a Brigade Captain for Open Salt Lake. Now, I’d like to share a little bit about how the Brigade works and a couple of the projects we’ve been working on. The Open Salt Lake Brigade has 7-10 core members who conduct weekly meetings and are highly committed to this cause. A critical element in making our projects a success is that several of our members are employees of the City of Salt Lake. For example, Nole Walkingshaw, Brigade Captain for Open Salt Lake, is the Planning Programs Supervisor for the City of Salt Lake…. Continue reading

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Guest Blog from Code for America | Open Data and Flamingos at Accela Engage: 2013 User Conference

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Today’s guest blog post comes from Code for America, an Accela partner and attendee at Accela Engage: 2013 User Conference in San Diego this week: By Ashley Meyers, Development and Engagement Manager, Code for America A year ago, when I first met Maury Blackman, CEO of Accela, and Kris Trujillo, then senior software architect (since promoted to Director of Software Development), we spoke about support for the 2013 Oakland Fellowship project. Little did I know that Accela would become a generous corporate sponsor of our 2013 programs and a partner on open data and data standards. Thanks to funding from Accela and other local match partners — including the Akonadi Foundation,… Continue reading

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If These Walls Could Talk: The Case for Open Housing Data

Erica Harvill
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Accela is partnering with San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and Code For America to launch the House Facts Data Standard. Today, Jack Madans, Community Manager for Code for America, shared his thoughts on the partnership, the standard and the case for open housing data: With an average of 36 million Americans changing homes every year, we’re a country constantly on the move. But too often there’s more than meets the eye at an open house. Broken plumbing, faulty heat, pests, or absentee landlords are just some of the unpleasant surprises that arise after the lease or deed is signed. More seriously, poor ventilation, asbestos, mold, and lead constitute hidden hazards that can lead to poisoning and chronic disease…. Continue reading

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Bring Code for America to Your City

Erica Harvill
We’ve been doing a lot of great work with Code for America (CfA). Whether participating in civic hackathons or partnering for their 2013 Fellowship Program, we’re working together to demonstrate our commitment to civic innovation. Our friends at CfA are actively seeking local governments who want to participate in their 2014 Fellowship. As many of you know, the Code for America Fellowship is a year-long program focused on civic collaboration and innovation. The Fellowship partners talented teams of developers, designers and entrepreneurs with change agents from local governments to address a range of civic challenges. Benefits to cities include: Catalyst for innovation New perspectives on issues your city is facing Products &… Continue reading

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“Data-Hungry” Is the Sentiment at the Code Across America Hackathon

Allen Chen
“In just one word, how are you feeling this morning?” That was one of the ice-breaker questions every participant of the “Hack Your City with Your City” event in San Francisco answered as we went around the room and introduced ourselves. The most common answers were ‘excited’ or ‘over/under-caffeinated,’ but the answer that struck me most, and which was also a common theme amongst participants whom I spoke with throughout the day, was the phrase ‘data-hungry.’ It succinctly summarizes the primary challenge facing the Open Data movement today — giving Developers an understanding of what data is available, how to get at it, and how to use it most effectively for common good…. Continue reading

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