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FCW : April 15, 2014
A new program dubbed 18F will try to graft the DNA of a high-tech startup onto the cumbersome machinery of government. Housed at the General Ser- vices Administration, 18F will be home to a team of developers who will build Web services for government agencies, prototypes for projects and tools that can be reused across government. 18F will be staffed by GSA s digital delivery team and Presidential Innova- tion Fellows. "This service delivery program will make GSA the home of the govern- ment s digital incubator," GSA Admin- istrator Dan Tangherlini said in a statement. "By using lessons from our nation s top technology startups, these public service innovators will be able to provide cutting-edge support for our federal partners that reduces cost and improves service." 18F is the latest in a series of IT development reforms being pushed by the Obama administration in the wake of the botched HealthCare.gov launch in October. It s of a piece with the new cross-agency performance goal to improve the delivery of IT services and can be seen as a new front in the battle to get agencies to adopt the rapid prototyping and iterative design meth- odology of agile development. 18F will GSA launches digital incubator rms were noti ed by federal agents in 2013 that their systems had been hacked 3,000+ Trending also be a hub of open-source software solutions and is posting its internal site development code on GitHub. The move tracks with draft legisla- tion being written by Reps. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) and Gerry Connolly (D-Va.) that would give the U.S. chief technol- ogy of cer responsibility for streamlin- ing IT procurement and create an of ce that would be required to participate in the development of large-scale federal websites. In one signi cant difference from the legislative draft, 18F is an opt-in service, not a supervising authority. Federal agencies can ask 18F to build public-facing websites for them, use it as a kind of consultancy or con- tract shop, or tap it as a resource for advice on what to build or buy. Agen- cies will pay for 18F services or for the time of embedded employees the way they reimburse GSA for other services. The 18F team reports to Dave McClure, associate administrator of GSA s Of ce of Citizen Services and Innovative Technologies. It has 15 full-time employees, with room under the scal 2014 budget to grow to 65. Agencies are under no obligation to take their projects to 18F, and a GSA spokesperson told FCW that there are no plans at this time to have 18F review large-scale online services like HealthCare.gov while they are in development. Former Presidential Innovation Fellow Clay Johnson, a vocal critic of federal IT contracting practices, was optimistic about the news. "18F has an opportunity to convince federal agen- cies to move away from the glacial, monolithic enterprise IT approaches of yesterday," he wrote in a blog post. "More than that, they can help to prove that small teams, inside and outside of government, can deliver high-quality technology products and services on time and under budget." --- Adam Mazmanian FCW CALENDAR Acquisition ACT-IAC s 8th Annual Small Business Conference will feature a keynote by GSA s Dan Tangherlini and a closing analysis by Deltek s Kevin Plexico. Washington, D.C. http://is.gd/fcw_sbc Geodata Of cials from the State Department, U.S. Geological Survey and National Park Service will speak at State of the Map US, an annual event for the OpenStreetMap community. Washington, D.C. http://is.gd/fcw_osm 4/24 4/12-13 FOSE IBM s Anne Altman, Amazon Web Services Teresa Carlson and DOD s Teri Takai are among the speakers at this eight- track IT conference produced by 1105 Media, the parent company of FCW. Washington, D.C. http://fose.com 5/13-15 April 15, 2014 FCW.COM 3 These public service innovators will be able to provide cutting-edge support for our federal partners that reduces cost and improves service. --- DAN TANGHERLINI, GSA ZAID HAMID
March 30, 2014
April 30, 2014