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DHS IG Investigates If CBP Abused Authority to Unmask Anti-Trump Twitter User

April 24, 2017 The Department of Homeland Security is investigating whether a recent effort to unmask a Twitter user critical of President Donald Trump’s administration was “improper in any way.” Last month, a Customs and Border Protection agent in a summons demanded Twitter hand over the details of the @ALT_USCIS account, including user...

Justice, 18F Partner for Government-wide FOIA Portal

April 21, 2017 If all goes according to plan, you'll soon be able to submit Freedom of Information Act requests to any agency through one streamlined website. At least, that's what the Justice Department and the General Services Administration's digital consulting team 18F are hoping to achieve; the two groups are collaborating on...

Senators Urge Trump to Fill Top White House Science and Tech Spots

April 21, 2017 A group of Democratic lawmakers is urging President Donald Trump to fill the science and technology posts left vacant in the White House when Barack Obama’s administration left. Sen. Maggie Hassan, D-N.H., led a group of other senators asking Trump to hurry up and hire qualified candidates to serve as...

I Built A Bot With Zero Coding Experience. So Can You.

April 20, 2017 Today, I built a web crawler that auto-populates a spreadsheet with stock prices. It wasn’t very advanced: It pulled a few companies’ quotes from CNNMoney and funneled them into an Excel file, along with time stamps. But it was the first bot I’ve ever made, and I did it in...

Watchdog: Energy Department Mismanaged Some R&D Investments

April 19, 2017 The Energy Department’s research investment programs aren’t effectively managed, occasionally leading to overspending, a federal watchdog found. The department’s Office of Science distributes Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer awards, given to companies working on specific energy-themed technology projects. The Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy also builds cooperative...

Trump’s Executive Order Promotes American Tech Workers Instead of Foreign Ones

April 18, 2017 President Donald Trump is making progress on a plan to roll back visas for foreign workers, part of an effort to protect American jobs. Trump signed an executive order Tuesday designed to make it harder for companies to hire foreign employees instead of domestic ones under the H-1B visa program,...

Former Microsoft CEO Opts to Open Government Himself

April 18, 2017 Government spending patterns might not seem like the most pressing concern for Steve Ballmer, formerly chief executive of Microsoft and current owner of the Los Angeles Clippers. And yet, it’s the theme of his newest tech venture, USAFacts.org, a searchable repository of public-sector spending data. Ballmer on Tuesday unveiled the...

Report: USPTO’s Michelle Lee In Running for White House’s Top Science Spot

April 18, 2017 U.S. Patent and Trademark Office head Michelle Lee could be a candidate for the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy director, Politico reports. Lee, also a Commerce Department undersecretary for intellectual property, ran Google’s patent and patent strategy arm. Politico cited “sources familiar with the job search,” though...

DHS Needs Someone to Explain Biometrics to the Public

April 17, 2017 The Homeland Security Department wants to preempt any biometric-related PR disasters by hiring communications professionals to handle the topic. DHS is gathering information about professional communications services for its Office of Biometric Identity Management, which houses the largest biometrics repository in the federal government, according to a recent request for...

Trump Is Keeping White House Visitor Logs Secret, Unlike Obama

April 14, 2017 President Donald Trump's administration has decided to keep White House visitor logs private, reversing practice under Barack Obama. Under Obama, the White House maintained visitor records online—an archive still exists there—but the site under Trump currently asks visitors to "Stay tuned as we continue to update whitehouse.gov." The Trump administration...

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