NYC.gov Hackathon Goes Live This Weekend

Rachel-SterneExpect a more comprehensive debriefing later next week as the aftermath officially sets in. Meanwhile, General Assembly is hosting a rare event on behalf of the city government. Earlier this month, news broke of a new civic-minded call to arms from Rachel Sterne. New York’s first digital officer wanted to rally the troops for a unique crusade: giving NYC.gov a facelift.

NYC.gov is a massive website with allegedly a million pages. The problem is, aside from being the online abode for the city government, it’s ugly and not very user conducive to furthering improved ties with local tech talent.

The ultimate goal of participants is to improve the site and bring it into the social networking revolution’s orbit. That way, it won’t seem as if Mayor Bloomberg is too out of touch with the tech troopers. Well, he did give the Foursquare guys an award recently. There’s also a big push for a major tech university, sort of an East Coast Stanford.

Of course, it’s unclear if the negative vibe that hackathons have earned has affected the NYC.gov initiative. Two weeks ago, the first news on this latest government initiative expressed a rather sour note on the part of the hackers themselves who deem such occasions havens for exploitative free labor.

To look on the bright side, it would be a pleasant surprise when NYC.gov finally gets a facelift it deserves.

Via: NY Daily News

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