Politics

Attack on @baskers and the public sector

14 November 2010. 4 Comments

Disclaimer (just in-case you haven’t noticed the statement in the sidebar of this blog): These are my own personal thoughts and not those of my employer. I’m disappointed. Over the past few months a concerted media campaign against public sector workers has been building. We are continually portrayed as being lazy and overpaid, not only […]

The new government on the web

24 May 2010

We are nearly two weeks into the new Conservative-Liberal Democrat and there seems to be a lot of work going on behind the scenes to prepare for the start of the new legislative programme tomorrow (Tuesday). Of course, with a new government brings a new direction. Steph Gray, a former civil servant working in the […]

A brief moment of silence

7 April 2010

Unless it escaped your attention, Gordon Brown called the much anticipated UK General Election yesterday. It will take place on May 6th 2010. In line with guidelines for civil service and other public sector employees, I will be curtailing my blogging and tweeting activities until after the election. If I do post anything, it won’t […]

A quick note on MP expenses

6 February 2010

As some of you may remember, a few months ago I waded in on the MP expenses controversy with a crowd-sourcing website for putting together a list of what they all claimed. The Guardian (and others) produced their own websites that did a similar job and generally worked better. Since then, there have been further […]

Open Government & Open Data

15 December 2009. 1 Comment

It has been exactly nine months since I started my job at Consumer Focus Labs. In this time, we’ve published our Recalled Products website, some data on the Digital Switchover in Wales, been contributing to a blog following our attempts to get data out of Tesco and are producing our new StayPrivate.org website. Sometimes I […]

Setting the Post Code free…

6 October 2009. 2 Comments

The Royal Mail is well known in the UK for being an outdated organisation that is struggling to modernise, is regularly hit by crippling strikes and always seems to be losing money (despite the fact they made a profit recently?!). However yesterday they took on a new tact: they appear to have decided to bring […]

A look at the new Birmingham City Council website

8 September 2009. 2 Comments

Hello? Is that Birmingham City Council? This is 2001, we’d like our website back! There has been a lot of talk on Twitter today about the launch of the new Birmingham City Council website. Without a doubt, Birmingham have successfully launched one of the most delayed and expensive websites of the last few years. After being delayed […]

How clean is your beach?

7 September 2009

This is a bit different to my usual posts – but I felt this had to be said. Tonight, I had the misfortune of watching what has to be the second worst piece of reporting I’ve ever seen from the BBC (unfortunately ,the first also came from the same programme last year).  Panorama has to be […]

WhatTheyClaimed.com – a lesson in crowdsourcing

19 June 2009

Yesterday, Richard Pope and I launched WhatTheyClaimed.com, a site aimed at digitising and collating all of the data from MPs expenses. The website is based upon a system I built a few weeks ago to monitor our own expenses at Consumer Focus Labs . The site was designed to match the processes at Consumer Focus, […]

Talking about Website Accessibility

6 March 2009

Earlier today at the Future of Web Apps conference in Dublin, Robin Christopherson from UK charity AbilityNet gave a talk on website accessibility.  I’ve seen quite a few different talks and sessions on website accessibility and understand how important this topic is.  This talk however really hit home – Robin is blind and gave the […]

Any views stated here are my own and not those of my employer unless otherwise stated.