Welcome!

@BigDataExpo Authors: Peter Silva, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Talend Inc., Pat Romanski

Blog Feed Post

New year, new Congress: What’s next for DATA?

By

[This post by Hudson Hollister is cross-posted on the Data Transparency Coalition's blog.]

 

Tomorrow a new U.S. Congress – the 113th, elected last November – will be sworn in.  The 112th Congress finished its run with a divisive confrontation on fiscal priorities.

Advocates of opening up government data are rightfully disappointed at the lack of Congressional action on the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act, or DATA Act. The DATA Act, championed by Reps. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and Elijah Cummings (D-MD) in the House of Representatives and by Sens. Mark Warner (D-VA) and Rob Portman (R-OH) in the Senate, would have required the U.S. government to publish all executive-branch spending data on a single Internet portal. Spending data is currently reported to at least seven separate compilations maintained by different agencies, some publicly accessible and others not.

The DATA Act also would have set up consistent data identifiers and markup languages for all spending data, which would have allowed the separate compilations to be searched together, dramatically enhancing government accountability.

The DATA Act would generate new opportunities for the tech industry, as our Coalition demonstrated at its DATA Demo Day last summer. If U.S. federal spending data were consistently published and standardized – Big Data analytics companies could develop new ways to find waste and fraud; financial management vendors could offer new services to their existing federal clients; and infomediaries like Google could republish and repackage the data for the public and profit from advertising revenues.

What happened?

The DATA Act was first introduced in both chambers in June 2011, and shortly thereafter was approved by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and sent to the full House of Representatives. After further revisions the bill passed the full House in April 2012. In September 2012, Sens. Warner and Portman rewrote and reintroduced the bill in the Senate to address objections from grantees and contractors. But the next step – consideration by the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee (HSGAC) and the committee’s recommendation to the full Senate – never occurred, because the committee did not hold a business meeting between the DATA Act’s reintroduction and the end of the Congress. The HSGAC’s leaders – chairman Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) and ranking member Susan Collins (R-ME) – didn’t find the DATA Act important enough to merit the time and effort of a committee meeting, deliberation, and a vote.

With the end of the 112th Congress and the start of the 113th, all pending legislative proposals are wiped out and must be re-introduced.

Is the DATA Act dead? Absolutely not! Chances are good that the bill will be introduced again and passed – by both chambers, this time! – in 2013.

Here’s why.

  • The DATA Act’s champions aren’t going away. Rep. Issa, the DATA Act’s original author, and Sen. Warner, its first Senate sponsor, remain well-placed to champion a new version of the bill, with Issa keeping his position as chairman of the powerful House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Meanwhile, term limits and retirement will bring new leadership to the Senate HSGAC: chairman Tom Carper (D-DE) and ranking member Tom Coburn (R-OK). Carper and Coburn may well prove more enthusiastic about pursuing data transparency in federal spending than Lieberman and Collins were.
  • The Recovery Board’s spending accountability portal IS going away. The original DATA Act was based on lessons learned from the work of the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board, the temporary federal agency established by Congress in 2009 to oversee the spending mandated by the economic stimulus law. The Recovery Board used standardized electronic identifiers and markup languages to make its online accountability portal fully accurate, complete, and searchable. According to the Recovery Board’s most recent report, inspectors general using the portal recovered $40 million in stimulus funds from questionable contractors and grantees and prevented $30 million from being paid out in the first place. The Recovery Board’s portal could easily be expanded to cover all spending rather than just stimulus spending. (No reliable government-wide spending accountability portal exists.) But the Recovery Board’s legal mandate only covers overseeing the stimulus. The temporary agency will be eliminated when the stimulus law expires on September 30, 2013. Unless Congress acts, the Recovery Board’s portal will be decommissioned on that date – and replaced with nothing. The Recovery Board’s imminent demise should put pressure on Congress to pass legislation to make sure that the time, money, and effort spent to create the stimulus accountability portal are not wasted. The April 2012 House version of the DATA Act – and amendments our Coalition suggested for the September 2012 Senate version – would do exactly that.
  • The press is taking notice. Last month, Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank asked why the DATA Act – “so uncontroversial that it passed the House on a voice vote” – has yet to achieve full passage. Milbank’s reaction is that of any smart layperson: the need to publish all federal spending data online, and make it fully searchable through electronic standardization, sounds like something the executive branch should be doing already – and if it isn’t, Congress should tell it to.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Bob Gourley

Bob Gourley writes on enterprise IT. He is a founder and partner at Cognitio Corp and publsher of CTOvision.com

@BigDataExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 ad...
As enterprises work to take advantage of Big Data technologies, they frequently become distracted by product-level decisions. In most new Big Data builds this approach is completely counter-productive: it presupposes tools that may not be a fit for development teams, forces IT to take on the burden of evaluating and maintaining unfamiliar technology, and represents a major up-front expense. In his session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Andrew Warfield, CTO and Co-Founder of Coho Data, will dis...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Commvault, a global leader in enterprise data protection and information management, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Commvault is a leading provider of data protection and information management...
It's easy to assume that your app will run on a fast and reliable network. The reality for your app's users, though, is often a slow, unreliable network with spotty coverage. What happens when the network doesn't work, or when the device is in airplane mode? You get unhappy, frustrated users. An offline-first app is an app that works, without error, when there is no network connection.
The cloud promises new levels of agility and cost-savings for Big Data, data warehousing and analytics. But it’s challenging to understand all the options – from IaaS and PaaS to newer services like HaaS (Hadoop as a Service) and BDaaS (Big Data as a Service). In her session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Hannah Smalltree, a director at Cazena, will provide an educational overview of emerging “as-a-service” options for Big Data in the cloud. This is critical background for IT and data profes...
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that VAI, a leading ERP software provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. VAI (Vormittag Associates, Inc.) is a leading independent mid-market ERP software developer renowned for its flexible solutions and ability to automate critical business functions for the distribution, manufacturing, specialty retail and service sectors. An IBM Premier Business Part...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Alert Logic, Inc., the leading provider of Security-as-a-Service solutions for the cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Alert Logic, Inc., provides Security-as-a-Service for on-premises, cloud, and hybrid infrastructures, delivering deep security insight and continuous protection for customers at a lower cost than traditional security solutions. Ful...
Fortunately, meaningful and tangible business cases for IoT are plentiful in a broad array of industries and vertical markets. These range from simple warranty cost reduction for capital intensive assets, to minimizing downtime for vital business tools, to creating feedback loops improving product design, to improving and enhancing enterprise customer experiences. All of these business cases, which will be briefly explored in this session, hinge on cost effectively extracting relevant data from ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Catchpoint Systems, Inc., a provider of innovative web and infrastructure monitoring solutions, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's DevOps Summit at 18th Cloud Expo New York, which will take place June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Catchpoint is a leading Digital Performance Analytics company that provides unparalleled insight into customer-critical services to help consistently deliver an amazing customer experience. Designed...
With the Apple Watch making its way onto wrists all over the world, it’s only a matter of time before it becomes a staple in the workplace. In fact, Forrester reported that 68 percent of technology and business decision-makers characterize wearables as a top priority for 2015. Recognizing their business value early on, FinancialForce.com was the first to bring ERP to wearables, helping streamline communication across front and back office functions. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Kevin Roberts...
With an estimated 50 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020, several industries will begin to expand their capabilities for retaining end point data at the edge to better utilize the range of data types and sheer volume of M2M data generated by the Internet of Things. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Don DeLoach, CEO and President of Infobright, will discuss the infrastructures businesses will need to implement to handle this explosion of data by providing specific use cases for filte...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Pythian, a global IT services company specializing in helping companies adopt disruptive technologies to optimize revenue-generating systems, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Founded in 1997, Pythian is a global IT services company that helps companies compete by adopting disruptive technologies such as cloud, Big Data, advanced analytics, and DevO...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Fusion, a leading provider of cloud services, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Fusion, a leading provider of integrated cloud solutions to small, medium and large businesses, is the industry's single source for the cloud. Fusion's advanced, proprietary cloud service platform enables the integration of leading edge solutions in the cloud, including clou...
Most people haven’t heard the word, “gamification,” even though they probably, and perhaps unwittingly, participate in it every day. Gamification is “the process of adding games or game-like elements to something (as a task) so as to encourage participation.” Further, gamification is about bringing game mechanics – rules, constructs, processes, and methods – into the real world in an effort to engage people. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Robert Endo, owner and engagement manager of Intrepid D...
With microservices, SOA and distributed architectures becoming more popular, it is becoming increasingly harder to keep track of where time is spent in a distributed application when trying to diagnose performance problems. Distributed tracing systems attempt to address this problem by following application requests across service boundaries, persisting metadata along the way that provide context for fine-grained performance monitoring.
We all know that data growth is exploding and storage budgets are shrinking. Instead of showing you charts on how much data there is, in his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Scott Cleland, Senior Director of Product Marketing for HGST, will show how to capture all of your data in one place. After you have your data under control, you can then analyze it in one place, saving time and resources. See how HGST has used these solutions to gain more value out of the information we have – and capitalize o...
Data-as-a-Service is the complete package for the transformation of raw data into meaningful data assets and the delivery of those data assets. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Lakshmi Randall, an industry expert, analyst and strategist, will address: What is DaaS (Data-as-a-Service)? Challenges addressed by DaaS Vendors that are enabling DaaS Architecture options for DaaS
Eighty percent of a data scientist’s time is spent gathering and cleaning up data, and 80% of all data is unstructured and almost never analyzed. Cognitive computing, in combination with Big Data, is changing the equation by creating data reservoirs and using natural language processing to enable analysis of unstructured data sources. This is impacting every aspect of the analytics profession from how data is mined (and by whom) to how it is delivered. This is not some futuristic vision: it's ha...
The IoT's basic concept of collecting data from as many sources possible to drive better decision making, create process innovation and realize additional revenue has been in use at large enterprises with deep pockets for decades. So what has changed? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Prasanna Sivaramakrishnan, Solutions Architect at Red Hat, discussed the impact commodity hardware, ubiquitous connectivity, and innovations in open source software are having on the connected universe of people, thi...