20 thoughts from #ukgc12


Photo of a toy dragon wearing headphones

On Friday and Saturday I went to the UK Gov Camp in London. Along with about 300 other, fairly geeky, people. It’s an annual unconference full of energy, ideas and a lot of typing. The excellent Dan Slee has floated the idea of noting down 20 things that struck one after the event. These, for better or worse, are my 20.

I have more to write, in particular about open data in housing, housing benefit apps and Ushahidi. But for now:

1. My netbook running Ubuntu Linux is way cooler than your Macbook Air

2. Many of the issues relating to open data relate to the way organisations perceive and use data rather than openness

3. If anyone asks you to show the ROI of social media you should explain to them that they know nothing about communications

4. The public sector is massive, complex and messy. And it’s only one part of public services

5. We must not lose sight of accountability, governance and power issues in the quest for excellent services

6. When do we move the open data debate out of the state and into corporates?

7. The Ushahidi community and the wider crisis mapping communities are a bit wonderful

8. It’s really healthy to ask why we do this thing (or that thing, or a third thing)  at all

9. Talking is great, doing is better, doing without talking first is a waste

10. We maybe don’t have as many models of mutuality as we could do

11. Open data is a governance issue for every organisation. Or should be.

12. QR Codes are so much more wonderful than I had imagined

13. Brompton riders rule

14. While Sharepoint may not be evil, it is a pig. Still, properly wrangled, it’s amazing what a pig can achieve

15. Putting things on maps is cool. Giving others the power to put things on maps is disruptive

16. Shropshire leads the world in Jelly (the foolishly named co-working movement rather than the trifle ingredient). Jelly shows how economic development could be really different

17. We need leaders who understand networks

18. We need to understand networks

19. I am very tired

20. This year will be all about Ushahidi.

Photo is by David J Pearson and depicts one of the delegates (Puffles). Used under CC BY-SA-2.0.