Brooklyn Rising

BK RisingMy vantage point on the entrepreneurial phenomenon occurring in Brooklyn may be relatively remote, but you don’t need a front row seat to get the picture that something major is springing up.  I’ve been hosting a online Legal Hackathon series in Brooklyn the last few days and taking the opportunity to dig in and spread out to get a flavor of this place now.  Brooklyn is blowing me away.  Everywhere I look around Dumbo and the Navy Yard I’m seeing people working in teams on projects of all types and who are driven to create, make and build at audacious levels of excellence, design quality and performance.

There is a major center of gravity here, attracting some of the most talented, skilled and creative technologists, designers and inventors that I know.  And the pilgrimage is centered in a particular corner of Brooklyn. The Brooklyn Navy Yard, Dumbo and surrounding neighborhoods are surging with great startups, award winning projects and inventions you can try for yourself in streets, warehouses, cafes or in many cases, right in the quiet comfort of your home by overnight delivery.

 

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A few days ago Mitchell Joachim, a TED Fellow and founder of Terreform ONE, shared his work on foldable cars and bioengineered homes made from living materials at the third annual Futuregreen Hospitality Forum. Mitch was a star designer at the MIT Media Lab not many years ago and today his studio idea factory Terreform ONE is a driving force at the Brooklyn Navy Yard.  I remember the thrill of seeing Mitch design and pitch the “Fab Tree Hab” while he was at MIT and clearly he has put the pieces, people and place together necessary to get building that vision today.
Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 9.21.02 PMMarcel Botha, who I also worked with when we was at the MIT Media Lab, is hitting home runs leveraging the unique potential of 3D printing with projects like Spuni.  Literally, Marcel and his team reinvented the product known as a “spoon” by deliberate ergonomic design focused on a tool to make meals less messy for babies and parents alike. New parents with apple sauce smeared over all people, furniture and smartphones pay attention: Yes, we can do better.  Marcel was just quoted as saying “No problem is unsolvable.   If you can think it, we can make it” and that pretty well sums up the attitude of this Brooklyn resurgence.

Mitch and Marcel, along with a remarkable assemblage of other budding applied inventors, are part of the New Lab.  The New Lab is a “facility in the Brooklyn Navy Yard that fosters innovation in design, prototyping and new manufacturing” and you can confirm that on it’s web page or – better yet – by availing yourself of the products, services and other inventions they have launched.

My old friends from the MIT Media Lab are knocking it out of the park with the New Lab… and contributing a major part of what makes the Brooklyn Navy Yard epicentral to a real surge of industrious innovators.  I’ve witnessed this type of surge in prior decades and other cities.  This stands in start counterpoints to the the shark jumping conversations about positioning a startup for the ultimate goal of being funded as a trophy or angling a market direction solely to position into being acquired out of existence by a massive competitor.  My visits around the Navy Yard over the last few months have surfaced conversations with young people who are getting down to building things of value and I have heard almost no replacement of that driving goal with the pyrrhic victory of a buy out that has routinely passed as innovation elsewhere for far too long.  The focus and motivation of innovation tends to influence if not determine the resulting products and services… and it shows in Brooklyn today.

Want to feel the electricity of potential manifesting as reality?  Take a trip to Brooklyn and see for yourself how the Bards of the Yard are using the raw materials of big ideas to manufacture astonishingly better things to have, use and do in re-imagined places for work, play and home.  Put it together, and these people are working on the challenge of inventing into existing the thriving truth of environments people genuinely enjoy inhabiting.

Cloud Flow Integration

The innovation economy is fundamentally fueled by idea flow.  And the Social Physics of idea flow depend upon the flow of data from, through and to distributed heterogeneous applications and platforms across the Internet.

On a technical level, this is about networked services.  Specifically, this type of distributed integration requires very particular functional programming interfaces enabling various different software on many different networks and operating environments to express itself as an interoperable service at standard interfaces.  More specifically, the software must be capable of performing automated workflows with the other distributed systems that, taken together, comprise an integrated system of systems.

In a sense, you could say this method is a way to be “in the now” by gaining continuous, reliable and high quality access to data streams, integrated services and the state of idea flow among people that best realized the promise of innovation in the moment.  The concept of being focused on and living very much in the now is a new and profoundly valuable theme at the MIT Media Lab, as described and exemplified by our Director Joi Ito in his Ted talk below:

 

 

To create a working system that can be tested, refined and used for these purposes, we have started an informal but energetic research project at the lab. A small scale and primitive example of how interoperable services can be linked and chained together to form a system of systems is illustrated by the below video demo of the MIT Online Legal Hackathon design concept and prototype:

As a next step, the plan is to develop more process automation and tighter service integration by use of REST interfaces instead of  inter-linking and embedding of each service while still relying on manual processes. An example of how to accomplish this would be using the Jetpack plugin and WordPress.com REST API and the Sched.org API. A description of the particular process flows and functions has been published at the MIT Legal Physics Research Team blog at eCitizen.MIT.edu/blog/FlowScape

 

The Codification is Near…

CorpBot: Integrated Business, Legal and Technical Systems

Version 0.1

This version 0.1 post is partly a placeholder and partly a stake in the ground for iterative development of an article assessing the current state of affairs and evaluating problems and prospects for the successful convergence of applied legal rules and encoded software scripts.

The rise of Etherium has yielded rumors and portents of a new Bitcoin-line Blockchain supporting the flow of “cryptocurrencies” by so-called “autonomous cryptographic entities” transacting “self-enforcing contracts” with one another. The emergence of these strange creatures roaming the same Internet as the rest of us is a harbinger that the long anticipated integration of legal code and computer code is once again a live topic.


Above, Tom Johnson describes conditions under which an Ethereum or other smart contract may be a legal contract. Tom is a patent attorney in San Jose who has written on Bitcoin. Kudos to Tom for providing this clear and accessible walk through.

The video above is an example of how the Etherium approach is being described legally by a steady flow of people I speak with. Note the sense that this is very different and the assertions about the role and relationship of the Etherium approach vis-a-vis traditional legal frameworks such as contract law and property law.

I’ll fill this thread out over time. It is a rich vein of law, technology and innovation with a rich history and a future that may be far more inventive that is suggested by the current framing of issues and options. It’s a great entry point to this discussion.

The Law of Remixing Music

Legal Hackers NYC has taken on the complex legal arena covering remixing music with their latest Meetup on April 23 2014 at the Eyebeam Art & Technology Center. The deeper focus of the vent was on the less-known technical area called “Sync Rights”.


Above: Remixing Music Law: Sync Rights

COMMENTARY

Thanks to Legal Hacker NYC and especially to Joly MacFie of isoc-ny.org for creating the video and doing the careful work needed to post with all the documentation, speakers, relevant links, descriptions, etc.  (see the time-anchored links below).

There is a connection between the minute/second temporal links by Joly and the underlying topic area.  At some point… eventually there will be robust and deeply integrated methods to describe and expose various temporal dimension of media content and other online resources.  Imagine being able to link all manner of web based services and functions based on a time axis (eg all people discussing a topic during a given period, or all references to a point in time from any media resource.  Just like Joly’s hyperlinks to temporal anchor points that are synced to events, topics, people, etc. by use of the YouTube URL scheme for YouTube videos, eventually it will be possible for everything from laws to big data simulations to leverage well formed and expected structured for time parameters embedded in services, apps, data and other resources.

As the innovative potential of sync rights to basically everything on the web is increasingly realized, the importance of this panel session will be understood in a much broader context.  As time-based online services gain wider adoptions across more and more contexts, the legal problems and prospects will require more panels like this one to explore how best to allocate the corresponding rights, duties, value, costs and risks.

Thanks to Joly MacFie, Video Sponsor: Internet Society New York Chapter, http://isoc-ny.org, for the the camera/edit work and for the following linked timeline and event description!

  • 00:08 Introduction – Phil Weiss
  • 01:32 Sponsor remarks – Nehal Madani
  • 02:17 Understanding Synchronization – Adam Kubota
  • 11:01 Summary of 2nd Speaker (off the record)
  • 12:20 Panel

- Brandon Martinez, INDMusic
http://www.tunecore.com/blog/2013/11/…
- Adam Silverman, Defy Media
https://www.linkedin.com/pub/adam-sil…
- Elisa Kreisinger, Eyebeam Artist-in-Residence
- Amyt Eckstein, Moses & Singer
- Gandhar Savur, Savur, Threadgold & Pellecchia, LLP
Moderators
- Phil Weiss, Legal Hackers
- Austin Mazzella, Brooklyn Law School

Hackpad: http://legalhackers.org/collaborate/r…

Event Sponsor: plainlegal
https://www.plainlegal.com/

Venue sponsor: Eyebeam Art & Technology Center
http://eyebeam.org/

Video Sponsor: Internet Society New York Chapter
http://isoc-ny.org

Camera/edit: Joly MacFie

http://www.meetup.com/legalhackers/ev…

http://legalhackers.org/

The Legal Hackers meet to discuss potential solutions to emerging problems surrounding music “sync” licensing (i.e., the right to synchronize a musical recording with moving images) and copyright enforcement on Internet user generated video platforms.

Sync rights were rarely subject to controversy prior to the rise of user generated Internet video. These rights were formally relevant only in business deals between music publishers and video production companies. However, since online video platforms have opened the floodgates for scores of people to publish homemade video, millions more than ever are now responsible to acquire sync licenses. This panel discussion will address how sync rights function and will also focus on achieving a practical solution that addresses both the interests of copyright holders to profit from their works and of Internet users in easily creating new content.

Mass-Scale Creative Design and Innovation Factories

V.0.2: Working Design Concept

What if the edX Platform could be configured and extended to compose a new type of innovation-making organization?  Perhaps it can…

I am planning to teach a class next semester at the Media Lab related to Social Physics and to use big data and automation concepts to achieve new knowledge creation, experiential learning resulting in tangible real-word valuable results and to create a more enriching and valuable experience for students.   The class organization could, if successful, demonstrate a new type of creativity machine in scalable innovation factories.

The MOOC innovation I have in mind for the edX Platform is to use real-time student team “problem sets” and “classroom assignments” to test whether highly creative designs and high quality prototypes can be invented, built and delivered within the span and scope of a class session.

A way to accomplish this is with class “assignments” structured as coordinated and participatory “design, build and deploy” exercises.  The underlying conceptual approach for achieving these “mass-scale creative design” processes and “Innovation Factories” is to leverage the general MOOC properties of lots of people at one time or period of time who are participating via a browser and who are focused on learning by doing assignments and working in teams as part of a larger structure that will result in evaluation of their performance and the quality of their submitted assignments for a grade or other recognition.  Each of these general elements can be leveraged and extended to achieve this idea for a scalable innovation method.  Also, the powerful capabilities of the edX Platform are critical.  Specifically the well suited Web 2.0 oriented functionality of the edX Platform to creatively apply a curriculum, pedagogy and learning design and classroom experience  can be structured and applied so as to generate new ideas, conduct carefully coordinated sequences, cycles and flows of crowdsourced contribution, and generate performance based, objectively provable and repeatable delivery of new knowledge, creative designs and quality prototypes or other products under highly constrained cost ceilings and profoundly condensed time periods.

InnovationFactory

(Above) Rough Placeholder Diagram of Earlier Design Concept

General Design Parameters

The premise is to design and conduct a MOOC such that it 1) is  of high educational merit for students and is an engaging, enjoyable experience both socially and intellectually, while at the same time 2) choosing to use replace the existing approach to class assignments with the following method and mechanism for real-time mass-scale innovation.

Elements of the Conceptual Design 

The specific idea, as it currently stands, is to test the above theory through an MIT Media Lab course this fall semester related to Social Physics and the research agenda on law, policy and large-scale systems design.  The course would be designed around the edX Platform and focused on directly applying it’s significant relevant functionality, extensibility and interoperability so as to provision the right user experience and workflows.  Integration of external apps and services, where appropriate, is anticipated and well supported in various ways by the edX Platform.

Engines of Mass-Scale Participatory Design

The MOOC design would use applied, real-time data-driven models to propel automated mass-scale idea generation (including by posing narrow achievable design challenges to lots of small groups), design selection (by a combination of peer and small group ratings of the ideas against relevant design goals and intended purposes), distributed prototyping.  The small group prototyping would require use of the rights tools and pre-configured workflows to achieve their bit of the task in a condensed period.  For creation of a document oriented final assignment or product (such as the design and launch of a statute or a text book) the tools may be available via the built in edX Wiki and other annotation and rating features.  For other types of design challenges, incorporation of mock-up, simulation, video production or other relevant software tools would be needed.  Integrating web-based services that provide these and many other tools can be complex but by selecting design parameters that require only very simple to use and easy to integrate external apps and services the task becomes much more achievable and realistic to attempt in the scope of a semester.  By structuring the design and initial conceptual demo work such that it happens by a large number of small team, the process is intended to enable and result in emergence of a variety of creative solutions and high quality design concepts.

Relevant, Achievable and Testable Success Metrics

Establishment of success metrics can be achieved by a combination of small teams that crowd-source inputs to a success metric template pre-configured in advance to ensure a clear, coherent and complete statement of the tests that can assess whether and resulting prototypes or other artifacts achieve the intended vision,  goals, objectives, functions, tasks or other outcomes.  In addition to small teams of MOOC participants are in the best position to postulate testable methods to prove compliance or achievement of success criteria because they will be steeped in the details of the design and prototype creation process hence highly focused and aware of the dynamics and expected behavior or performance of the final product or other artifact.  In addition to teams of MOOC participants, success metrics can be established in part or in whole by select independent experts and/or by  neutral third parties who provide input to the sae types of pre-configured templates designed to express appropriate criteria, test protocols and assessment methods.  These templates must be explicitly and directly tied to testing and assessment methods that can be accomplished using the edX and related tools or other resources available and realistic for completion within the time periods available.  There are other methods for development of relevant and appropriate success metrics, such as incorporation by reference of external standards or protocols, where there is a good fit.

Linking Design, Iteration and Finalization to Product Owner(s)

The development of an initial complete draft of a success metric template form driven document can (and for high value, mission critical or sensitive purposes probably should) include input, feedback and perhaps final approval by users in the role of “product owner” (ie the people for whom the product or other artifact is being created).  This role may be a single party, or a collection of parties who are the beneficial recipient and user of the artifact (eg maybe if the artifact is an app for dog owners, then a representative cross-section of dog owners may be appropriate to engage in the role of product owner).  The role may require a combination of stakeholders in order to fairly, legitimately and successfully constitute a “product owner” such as if the final artifact were a “supply chain widget” (in which case a combination of buyers, sellers, third party processors, logistics providers, etc may be needed to comprise an agreed and proportional composite of the “product owner” for that system of systems).  If the product were a privacy enhancing personal information device or method, the “product owners” could be comprised of a combination of individuals who would have their personal data protected and managed by the product as well as the parties who would operate and provide the product or service to the individuals as well as third parties who may possess or have access to the personal data or other systemic access to or reliance upon the product or service.  The concept of a role constituting the product owner but that is comprised of several parties who participate as a proportional composite of the relevant stakeholders is important in some contexts.  The alignment of incentives, interests and legitimate accountable inputs to decision making that may afford meaningful say in prioritization and/or influence or even vetor over objectional outcomes can itself ensure the resulting product or other artifact is in fact “fit for purpose” and can be adopted, used and evolved in a sustainable manner within the overall ecology of its use.

Leaving aside this idea for mass-scale innovation, the way that I have conducted graduate seminars at MIT in past years has always included the role of one or more so-called product owner(s).  Whether a class partner from industry, government or even sometimes other student teams, it is important to have a real-world comparable role for the party or parties for whom a project is being engaged.  This is an essential aspect of designing team-based experiential learning experiences that can prepare students for the environments of workplaces and the economy at large in which they will soon operate.

Rapid Cycles for Iterative Assessment and Testing

Functionally, the MOOC system would need to support very rapid input/feedback/validation cycles with the “product owner” for whom the design challenge is happening – whether that be a government, corporation, consortium, or a representative cross-section of “patients”, “students” “citizens” or possibly “all humans”), and once there are buildable designs and corresponding success metrics the next round or set of rounds would focus on recursive cycles of “building, testing, iterating and prioritizing” against performance-based assessment and process/product improvement imperatives.

Deciding When to Hand-In/Ship the Assignment/Product

The final round would be the cycle that results in the requisite percentage or number of pre-designated users (eg, in a class maybe that would be “50% + 1 of all participating students concur the product is ready to hand in for grading” or in a more applied experiential class or commercial deployment it could be “75% of product owners” plus 85% of product “assessment testers”).  When the condition is met, then an automatic “launch” of the working prototype or other final artifact is triggered which could include a process like upload to a particular GitHub repository, publication of a launch announcement that filles pre-configured phrases and clauses with content from the template-constrained MOOC process in order to ensure the correct product name, feature/function descriptions, benefit/solution claims, etc are publicized by use of an automated blog post/press release and corresponding tweets, email alerts, etc linking to the URL of the blog post.  In the event that no product or other artifact emerges that is considered “good enough” to ship within explicit and agreed period of time, level of effort or adherence to criteria then the exercise can gracefully but definitely wind down, afford opportunities for creative last-ditch efforts to find a way to push something adequate to completion, institute measures to harvest whatever good ideas did emerge and – of equal or maybe greater importance – to also identify and document any clear obstacles  or other breakdowns that resulted in the failure to ship.

Periods of Time to Test the Conceptual Design

The idea is to test doing this in a very minimal fashion during a live class session (dedicating perhaps an hour of a two hour session) and also to test the process through an asynchronous session lasting a week.  The seminar next semester is planned to happen on a weekly basis and so the intervening week between live classes can be focused on asynchronous engagement that applies the method by use of punctuation with distributed touchpoints (ie with teacher assistants, with other teams, or by delivery of a link to interim presentations via a youtube video for review/feedback by me as teacher), and by other benchmarks and milestones (such as progress toward completing phases and stages of the design template used for that assignment).  This method for asynchronous engagement is intended to ensure iteration through “rounds” of contribution, review, iteration and presentation that lead to meaningful contributions that are directly responsive to the class assignment.

And so…

In the above way, a method and mechanism to a new type of mass-scale participatory and success-metric aligned and objectively ships or fails to ensure best-use of resources, productivity and continued idea generation, flow and realization.

V.01: May 14, 2014

V.02: May 15, 2014: Added section on conducting the design test for this idea in the small during a 2 hour live class session and a more realistic and well suited test during a week long asynchronous period.  Added short reasoning of the important role of “product owner” for purposes of experiential project based learning and skill building and for prep to enter the workplace and economy.  (Note – add the importance of this role as a reality-check and if the parties conducting the role are well chosen and suited to the project also the important reflection of inherent successful achievement of the intended solution based on whether one for whom the solution is intended agrees it is workable and desirable).  Also, made minor edits for grammar, spelling and syntax.

Personal Neuroinformatics and the Law

As co-author of a paper on “Privacy for Personal Neuroinformatics” it is interesting to see the types of comments it is drawing in legal, policy and data-science circles. This is a niche topic, to be sure, yet some early adopters are already running into issues that will only grow more challenging over time.

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In a story titled “Boffins propose brainwave privacy standardjournalist Simon Sharwood of the Register covered the initial public release of the paper last month on Cornell University Library’s arXiv site. The story ends with some great questions, including whether “the NSA already made such privacy standards moot” noting that it’s “not hard to imagine the world’s spookhauses being very, very, interested in repositories that give them the chance to understand targets’ state of mind.” True to form, the comments to the Register article are a combination of hilarious and deeply thoughtful.

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Stay tuned for a future Google Hangout on the topic with at least two of the co-authors in the next month or two. In the meantime… share your questions, comments or ideas on this issue on the emerging @LegalScience Twitter thread.

Update June 4, 2014: Motherboard Article!

Yesterday Motherboard published a great article on this paper.  The article was written by Jordan Pearson and titled “Our Brains Will Be Hacked, Tracked and Data-Mined“.

Co-author, colleague (and all around good guy) Arek Stopczynski was quoted:

“We may wake up in a few years and say, ‘Oh, we should have done something. We should have thought about the privacy of this data…”

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Bonus to the Bonus: Thanks to the new press buzz, I was happy to discover my friend Silona Bonewald now works at Emotiv… adding another good harbinger of the momentum and adoption curve for driving a basic consumer underlying use case of personal neuroinformatics.

 

 

 

OpenLegalCode: Hack the Law – It’s Your Law

Today I convened the kick-off collaboration call of OpenLegalCode.net to work with Ben Kallos, New York City Council Member, OpenGov Foundation and other partners, stakeholders, collaborators and participants.

This project will soon have an accompanying Google Group and other avenue for contribution leading up to the MIT Legal Hackathon 2014 – a first major push with other jurisdictions to organize and advance a common approach to the key business, legal and technical aspects of getting America’s law online.

Boston Open Data and Protected Data Sharing Executive Order

Today, the City of Boston enacted a novel kind of digital government policy, the: “City of Boston Open Data and Protected Data Sharing”.

Exec Order Clip

This policy is a type of public law known as an Executive Order, applicable to the City of Boston and signed by Mayor Walsh. Moving forward from the recent change of administration, Justin Holmes, Interim Chief Information Officer for the City of Boston, took over and successfully led completion of the policy making initiative.

I was privileged to support the administration through my consultancy CIVICS.com with development of this policy and Executive Order and had an opportunity to observe several important and high value aspects of the initiative that may not be obvious at first glance.  Below are some highlights of a few relevant aspects of Boston’s new open government rule:

Integrated Business, Legal and Technical Collaboration

This initiative is notable not only for the quality of the policy but also as a model of how to make public policy and law in the digital age.  The City of Boston embraced a cross-functional business, legal and technical collaboration to initiate, launch, iterate, approve and launch this Executive Order.

Every step of benefited by the accountable ownership and coordinated follow through of key personnel of the Corporation Counsel of the City of Boston (the able attorneys of the City), the City of Boston Open Data Portal (the public sector web technology and applied data science experts of the City), the Mayors Office of New Urban Mechanics (an award-winning highly skilled small team of technology and business internal experts who provide targeted hands-on help to get high priority and innovative special projects done) and the crucial success factor of leadership – the consistent direct personal leadership – by the City of Boston Chief Information Officer without whom this would not have happened and upon whom the policy depends.

Addressing Both Public and Non-Public Records

The Executive Order is novel in part because it addresses the need for a consistent and coherent legal and operational framework for two closely interconnected types of data: 1) “Open Data” that is public and freely available to anybody via the web and also 2) “Protected Data” that is authorized the controlled sharing of “Protected Data” that is non-public and subject to some restriction on access or use such as health records ( subject to HIPAA) or education records (subject to FERPA).

In an interview with the Boston Globe site BetaBoston’s Dennis Keohane MIT Media Lab’s Ethan  Zuckerman noted the importance of addressing protected records, saying:

“The city is going to have to be careful to ensure that making data more accessible doesn’t end up violating the privacy of city residents”

Private data is, in a sense, the other side of the public data, and the two are inextricably linked at a policy level.  A unified policy addressing both at once has the potential to transform Boston into a truly digital city.  

(This rest of this section of the blog post is currently being drafted)

Technology-Neutral Two-Tiered Adaptive Policy Framework

In an interview today with local media outlet BostInno’s Nick Deluca, Boston CIO Justin Holmes said of the Executive Order:

“First, it establishes an affirmative tone that the city should be opening up as many data sources as available. Second, it allows [the CIO] to enact policy relative to the rules and regulations” applicable to data usage.

This is an important feature of the open and protected data measure because it enables high level goals, objectives, requirements and constraints to be set by the Executive Order and specifies a process for lower level, more detailed policies to be promulgated and updated as needed from time to time.

One of the benefits of this framework approach is that it avoids the classic trap of naming overly specific particular technologies in higher level rules and consequently suffering greater levels of non-compliance as the fast changing technologies evolve or worse yet effectively chilling or preventing adoption and use of innovative superior technology by the government (superior includes less expensive, more effective, time saving, higher quality and anything else you might value).

By contrast, the “technology neutral” approach is adopted in the Boston Executive Order.  Rather than lock in specific technologies the Executive Order sets out a clear, formal and continuing process for a named authority (the CIO) to promulgate lower level policies that define more detailed “how to” guidance.  Lower level policies can be updated more quickly, as needed to take advantage of evolving better technologies, to plug security holes, to change direction and use different technologies or adapt in some other way that may be advisable in the future.  The City of Boston CIO exists in an environment that is small enough to ensure fairly high levels of coordination and adaptation with other senior executive officials of the City.

To further increase the resources available to the CIO in formulation of policy and grappling with the sometimes complex technical options and interests in play, Section 6 of the Executive Order affirmatively directs and authorizes the CIO to:

regularly consult with experts, thought leaders and key stakeholders for the purpose of exploring options for the implementation of policies and practices arising under or related to this Executive Order

Unlike a formal advisory committee, this approach deftly opens the playing field for broad based input and puts the focus on exploration of options where it can do the most good at the lower more detailed level of rule making.   Given the myriad of issues and aspects of technology that arise in the context of open and protected data, the City was wise to craft a wide-open and continuing access to experts and thought leaders.

 Looking Forward 

When it rains… it pours.  And it’s pouring Open Data municipal law this week.   Michelle Wu, Boston City Councilor At-Large, today also surfaced an open data legal rules proposal.  Her draft city ordinance was filed and she plans to proposed it at the April 9th meeting of the Boston City Council.

Boston City Hall is currently the center of open data legal evolution, with the new Executive Order by the Mayor, the coming promulgation of Open Data Policy and Protected Data Sharing Policy by the CIO and now the City Council proposed ordinance working it’s way through the rulemaking process.  There is an opportunity to make a major breakthrough that can make a profound difference for the governance and people of Boston and could serve as a model for other cities.  

 
(The rest of this section of the blog post currently being drafted)

Geekhouse Lawyers Architect The Enterprise in Brooklyn

New York Legal Hackers have demonstrated the agile method that we talked about by posting this video within a day of shooting this panel discussion on “Lawyer as CTO” at the Bleak House to Geek House conference last week.  

Above,  Dazza Greenwood facilitates a top-notch panel who give voice to the perspectives of technologists, legal innovators, information scientists and former White House Deputy CTOs, among other vantage points:

  • Andrew McLaughlin, Partner, Betaworks; CEO, Digg and Instapaper; Former White House Deputy CTO
  • Beth Noveck, Director, The Governance Lab, and Jacob K. Javits Visiting Professor, NYU; Former White House Deputy CTO
  • Michael Robak, Associate Library Director and Director of Technologies, University of Missouri – Kansas City School of Law
  • Steven Berrent, Managing Director, WilmerHale eDiscoverySolutions; Director of Information Technology, Vice President Al Gore’s presidential campaign

You might want to watch this twice to catch all the the keen observations and creative insights about the role of law and technology in a variety of business and operational contexts.  And with the right architecture, it is possible to do things (some things) most things perhaps.