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Mar 15, 2010
Paul - thanks: I had spotted it and it's in the next post - - with other commentary. I have just added the video to that picked up from your tweet, so thanks for the pointer.
Toggle Commented Aug 27, 2009 on Yet more Rewired State at Public Strategy
Two very immediate first impressions. First, is that it is *much* slower than the old version - long pauses between clicks and pages becoming viewable/usable. Second is that the stats graph, which has become much more prominent on the overview page doesn't display at all - an ever rotating circle dots indicating that something is loading which never does against a backdrop saying 'there is no data for this period (and this is on a perfectly reasonably powered machine with a modern browser, so I am pretty confident that the problem is not at this end). [Wow - and clicking preview makes the comment disappear completely - only got it back by back arrowing]
Toggle Commented Jul 20, 2009 on Give us your feedback at Feedback on the new TypePad
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I think these are great comments. The good news is that I think there is more commonality of thought here than may first appear. The challenge is that different ways of framing the question risk obscuring that. I agree with Ruth that the bigger question is working out what we are trying to do (and with others that the answers will to some degree be emergent), but I am not sure that that makes it harder. That may be because we are seeing the boundary between the two questions slightly differently - the alternative ID card scheme is saying that we want (or should want) a different thing. We still need the beginnings of some idea of how that fits with what we currently have or, alternatively, how we change the wider system of which they will form a part. And that, it seems to me, is even more important if you accept Alex's view of the world. If government in its present form is part of the problem, then it needs to change or get out of the way (which itself would be no small change). But that's where the lobster pot comes in: nobody sat down and invented government to be this way, but the fact that it is the way it is part of the context in which VRM (or anything else) will need to be applied. Perhaps Alex is right that government is a thing of evil which only needs to get out of the way - but getting it out of the way would be no small challenge. Maybe DWP should be closed down, but it couldn't be done tomorrow, not because of bureaucratic self-preservation, but because millions of people depend on it to do what it does and will continue to do so until there is some other way of meeting their needs. Liz is clearly right that people are getting on with it, but that doesn't in itself change the bits which look difficult from this particular 'here', it just makes them more urgent, precisely because government is at risk of not seeing this one coming. William has, I think, homed in on the nub of this. Government - and other 'vendors' - is going to get data in new ways if this model works. It is going to have to decide what it is going to accept, what counts as being verified and reliable. Changing that in isolation doesn't work though: it has repercussions for every other aspect of the operation of the transaction processing bits of government. My argument is that the need to manage those repercussions is an important element of the whole programme. I make that point not to say that it's the responsibility of VRM advocates to work through those repercussions (that would be one of the standard defensive moves - "we can't take your idea seriously unless you can show the precise nature of the third order effects five years from now and have detailed plans for addressing them"), but to say that recognising the challenge and building the need to address it into the approach would be to add to its power.
Steph - thanks for the clarification about wikis. On customer experience, I don't think your point is naive at all - it is one of the fundamental differences between markets and the rest of us, and I agree with your implication that assuming we can or should be like Tesco is not the right approach. But a large part of the public sector is largely about delivering services to individuals, so it isn't unreasonable to think that boards might spend a considerable part of their energy being focused on that. That may well be harder for them to achieve, because they don't have the power of market pressure faced by Tesco, but interesting things might follow if they did.
Toggle Commented Jun 2, 2009 on Random thoughts from the Tower at Public Strategy
@Paul Public sector blogs is great and has been in my feed list since day one (and I had meant to include a reference in the post, but then forgot to) but it reinforces my point, I think - a quick scan of the OPML file suggests that there is more about than from government (including your own most excellent stuff). I hadn't spotted your sidebar before (perils of RSS readers), so thanks for the pointer.
Toggle Commented May 28, 2009 on The voices of government at Public Strategy
I think you are absolutely right that the audience in the room was an important one (which also means that the proper customer-focused question is what works for them) and that there is a risk that the power of the social media conversation risks distorting perceptions of who is not part of it - which not entirely coincidentally is the subject of a post I will be finishing later today.
Toggle Commented May 28, 2009 on Is the Tower still made of ivory? at Public Strategy