Conference on California's Future

Sacramento, Calif. - In May, the annual Government Technology Conference (GTC) West, renamed the "Conference on California's Future," was again held in Sacramento. For 2008, GTC changed from a general-interest, public-sector IT conference to a California-specific event. The conference fostered discussion about how technology will shape California government in the coming years. Big-name keynote speakers - Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Google vice president Vint Cerf, and Wired Magazine Editor in Chief Chris Anderson - drew large crowds of attendees.

The GTC format was also revamped; in-depth summits replaced the conference's traditional concurrent sessions. 

In the Connected Government summit, Anderson joined Debra Bowen, California Secretary of State for a conversation about Web 2.0 and how it can revolutionize the way citizens and government interact. Later, California DMV Director George Valverde and a panel from the public and private sector discussed how connected government can benefit citizens and improve how government itself does business.

- Chad Vander Veen

Visionary Officials Honored

Three California officials won recognition for their government re-engineering efforts at GTC West. The following individuals received awards for Innovation and Vision in Government from state CIO Teri Takai:

· Will Kempton, director of the California Department of Transportation, for his agency's completion of nearly 300 projects worth $2.3 billion in 2007.

· Dale Jablonsky, CIO of the California Employment Development Department, for his work on IT consolidation and creating an enterprise architecture.

· Selvi Stanislaus, executive officer of the California Franchise Tax Board, for her agency's development of free online tax filing and payment capabilities.

- Steve Towns

Green Scene

Green IT was a major agenda item at GTC West, which made sense given Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's highly publicized focus on the green issue. The conference included a Green IT Summit, a Green Pavilion on the sales floor and green commentary in most of the keynote speeches.

The governor boasted of the state's efforts to roll back carbon emissions to 1991 levels during his keynote speech. Former California State Controller Steve Westly now promotes investment in green technology as a managing partner in The Westly Group, a venture capital firm. He urged state officials to purchase more green products in remarks during the Green IT Summit. Will Semmes, chief deputy director of the state's Department of General Services, also advocated greener state operations at the summit.

- Andy Opsahl

Govtech.com Hot List

Here are the 10 most popular stories on Govtech.com from May 3, 2008 to June 3, 2008.

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University tests technology that could make it easier to identify the gun from which shells left at a crime scene have been fired.

2. Chertoff Takes on Immigration Enforcement Critics

U.S. Homeland Security secretary vows tougher enforcement of immigration laws.

3. Personal Computing: Is Your Computer Keyboard Making You Sick?

Your keyboard may harbor bugs that can cause a nasty case of food poisoning.

4. How to Improve Customer Satisfaction With IT

Strategies for creating real satisfaction when it comes to helping customers.

5. 311 Survey: Customer Service Systems Spread to Smaller Cities and Counties

311 systems offer better customer service and management information - but cost remains an issue.

6.

Chad Vander Veen  |  Associate Editor
Andy Opsahl  |  Features Editor
Steve Towns  |  Executive Editor