TOP NEWS Civic and Gov Tech See Positives in Microsoft Buying GitHub Microsoft has given open source advocates plenty of reason to be wary in the past. But in recent years the company has tried to reinvent itself and embrace open source and cooperative development. Now, they've purchased a huge component of that universe: GitHub, where people get together to build stuff. Here's what GitHub users in government and civic tech think of it. BidPrime Sues SmartProcure, SmartProcure Calls it a Misunderstanding The two companies do business in the competitive and crowded space of listing bid opportunities for government work. BidPrime has accused SmartProcure of stealing its data, but SmartProcure says it accessed data at the behest of customers and never used it in its own database. Here are the details. Urban Innovation Fund Officially Closes $22.5M First Fund The firm has invested in about half as many companies as it wants to so far. Shareholders Ask Amazon Not to Sell Facial Recognition Software to Government The company has come under fire for selling the software, called Rekognition, to police. Civil rights advocates fear that facial recognition, combined with increasing surveillance tools in the form of drones, traffic cameras and body cameras, will lead to police coming down even harder on minority communities. So shareholders are asking Amazon to just not sell the software to government at all. MARKET SPOTLIGHT
Blockchain on the Map We're launching new maps to visualize our content in different topic areas. Where is there government activity on blockchain? Click here for a list. GovTech company on our radar this week:
Rombit: A company that works to integrate data siloes and streamline workflows, with an emphasis on creating new data streams with Internet of Things technology. Headquartered in Belgium, Rombit was recently featured in the Global Startup Battleground at the BridgeSF conference in San Francisco. Run a GovTech company? Get on our radar here.
WHAT WE'RE READING
The Internet of Things Has Become a Toolbox for Domestic Abusers (New York Times)
A List of Useful Civic and Political APIs, Datasets and Websites (Will Friedman/Medium)
The Costs of Complexity in Gov Tech: A Twitter Rant (Dave Guarino/Twitter) GovTechBiz is our weekly newsletter covering the companies, deals and trends in the business of gov tech. Got a news tip? Other feedback? We're listening. Send it to GovTechBiz Writer Ben Miller at email@example.com.