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Joseph Marks

Senior Correspondent

Joseph Marks covers cybersecurity for Nextgov. He previously covered cybersecurity for Politico, intellectual property for Bloomberg BNA and federal litigation for Law360. He covered government technology for Nextgov during an earlier stint at the publication and began his career at Midwestern newspapers covering everything under the sun. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Wisconsin in Madison and a master’s in international affairs from Georgetown University.

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USDA expects employees’ use of mobile devices to skyrocket

August 20, 2012 While about 3,000 Agriculture Department employees are authorized to use smartphones and tablets on the job today, officials anticipate more than 100,000 will within five years, contract documents show. To better serve them, officials are in the market for technology to support a departmentwide store for mobile software applications, according...

Federal IT faces painful budget pressure

August 17, 2012 Federal agencies will face near-sequestration-level pressure to cut information technology spending in the next five years even if Congress manages to wriggle out of the across-the-board cuts required by a 2011 deal to avoid a government shutdown, a technology vendor and consultancy has predicted. Cuts will be driven by budget...

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let Robots Take my Job

August 17, 2012 The Government Accountability Office is looking for a tool to help track the volume of patent infringement litigation and to sort out who’s bringing the cases, according to solicitation documents. The solicitation arose from a provision in the 2011 Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, which tasked GAO with conducting a study...

Government has shuttered 50 data centers since May

August 17, 2012 The government has shuttered 318 data centers since 2010, 50 of them in the past three months, according to updated figures from the Office of Management and Budget released Friday. Agencies plan to close 56 more centers by the end of September and 363 by the close of September 2013,...

Nobody knows if you’re a fed online

August 16, 2012 The General Services Administration launched a tool Thursday that allows social media users to test whether they’re interacting with a legitimate government agency or official and not an imposter. The Federal Social Media Registry is essentially a search bar where people can paste the Web address of a social media...

Labor Department plans move to the cloud

August 16, 2012 The Labor Department plans to move its email and digital collaboration tools to the cloud, according to a solicitation released Wednesday. The department also is seeking Web-based e-discovery, records management and software-as-a-service tools -- programs that are stored in a vendor’s cloud rather than on an agency’s own servers. Labor’s...

The Limits of Civic Crowdsourcing

August 16, 2012 Andres Monroy-Hernandez has an interesting piece over at ReadWriteWeb about the limits of civic crowdsourcing, using the Mexican drug war as his prime example. Monroy-Hernandez is a fellow at Harvard University's Berkman Center for Internet and Society. His bottom line is that technological innovations can assist civic reform but they...

What Data Does the Public Want? Just Ask.

August 15, 2012 Agencies wondering what data they should release through application programming interfaces have hit on a novel idea: just ask. APIs are data streams that automatically transfer new information from one website -- in this case, a government agency’s -- to a subscriber’s computer or website. An environmental researcher, for instance,...

Education wants to tailor Web content to visitors’ disabilities

August 14, 2012 The Education Department is seeking technology to tailor its websites’ presentation to visitors’ disabilities, according to solicitation documents. The technology likely would recognize disabled visitors based on a stored profile from previous visits to the department’s websites and adjust the content accordingly, the July 30 documents state. Changes could include...

Interest in Petitions to Legalize Pot, Expose Aliens Plummets

August 9, 2012 Looking for evidence that the public is losing interest in the White House’s online petition platform We the People? Note this figure: two petitions urging the government to come clean on extraterrestrial visits to the United States together garnered about 17,000 signatures in six weeks soon after the site launched...

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