United States Geological Survey

Challenges, Crowdsourcing, Citizen Science: What’s the Dif?

Dec 16, 2015 |

There’s more than one way to harness the wisdom of the crowd. In honor of December’s monthly theme, we’re diving into and defining the various ways that federal agencies use public contributions to meet real needs and fulfill important objectives. Crowdsourcing Two’s company, three’s a crowd—and getting input from many is crowdsourcing. A White House Read »

White House Kicks Off Challenge.gov Anniversary with Wealth of New Prize Competitions

Oct 8, 2015 |

In a call to action issued Oct. 7, the White House announced several new programs challenging citizens to help federal agencies solve problems in areas ranging from space exploration to education. Hosted in conjunction with Georgetown University, the Case Foundation and the Joyce Foundation, the event Read »

DigitalGov Podcast: The Secrets Behind CIA Social Media

Aug 25, 2015 |

Julia Child and the OSS Recipe for Shark Repellent: http://t.co/q3cC4QiJhR #SharkWeek #OSS #WWII pic.twitter.com/Idbo1OkPLP — CIA (@CIA) July 9, 2015 The Central Intelligence Agency launched their Twitter account with the second most retweeted inaugural post in the platform’s history: “We can neither confirm nor deny that this is our first tweet.” Now for the first Read »

USGS is Asking If You Felt It: Latest Earthquakes

Jul 30, 2015 |

Having experienced everything from little tremors to violent shaking, I know what it is like to live in an earthquake zone. Hiding below a large table or under the sturdy doorframe, and at times with the Read »

As the World Churns: Earthquake Detection via Twitter

Jun 26, 2015 |

When one thinks of social media, usually it is thought of as a tool to keep in touch with friends and family. Behind all the social networking lies vast amounts of data that can be used in a multitude of ways. This data is an opportunity for government agencies to improve the services they provide Read »

Monthly Theme: Building, Evaluating, and Improving Government Services Through Social Media

Jun 5, 2015 | ,

While examples of government social media content may initially seem like mere fun—the YouTube video of President Obama on Between Two Ferns or the Transportation Security Administration’s “good catch” pics of lipstick stun guns and batarangs—the potential of applied social data to build, evaluate and improve diverse citizen services is only increasing. As we recently Read »

The API Briefing: Making a Difference One Microtask at a Time

Apr 22, 2015 |

I recently found an app that provides a great service through crowdsourcing. Be My Eyes connects visually-impaired people with volunteers. Using the smartphone’s camera, the volunteers can perform tasks such as reading an expiration date or helping someone navigate unfamiliar surroundings. This is not a federal app, but I wanted to highlight it to demonstrate how Read »

New USGS App Helps Save the Piping Plovers!

Apr 9, 2015 |

iPlover is a new app from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) for data collection about habitats on coastal beaches and the environment surrounding them. That sounds like a really difficult and important task, but luckily for us, the app is designed for trained and vetted professionals. It is an example of another federal crowdsourcing app, but for experts. The Read »

USGS, Where Citizen Science Is for the Birds

Jan 20, 2015 |

“I tell the interns: In this lab, we’re all about failure. If you’re not failing, you’re not really doing anything.” –Sam Droege, USGS biologist, in Audubon magazine The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is actively working with citizen scientists to discover, collect, and organize a variety of scientific data that is Read »

10 Years of Digital Government—A Retrospective

Dec 18, 2014 |

In December of 2004, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued the first Policies for Federal Public Websites. Over the past decade, we’ve seen technology completely transform how government delivers information and services to the public. On this 10-year anniversary, we’re taking a walk down memory lane to recap some of the pivotal moments Read »

2nd U.S. Public Participation Playbook Draft Responds to Public Contributions

Dec 8, 2014 |

The new second draft of the U.S. Public Participation Playbook incorporates changes that were proposed from nearly 100 suggestions submitted after the first week of public comment, with more improvements to come. We still need your contributions Read »

The API Briefing: EPA’s Water Quality Portal API Merges Three Data Streams

Oct 15, 2014 |

Access to clean water is fast becoming a vital issue in the 21st century. Changing climate patterns are drying up aquifers and limiting the amount of water runoff from thawing snow packs. Drought conditions in California are effecting hydroelectric production while dry conditions in the West have increased the frequency Read »

USGS Picture Puzzle: Do You See Changes to the Coast?

Sep 22, 2014 |

If you are a coastal resident, go to the beach, or are interested in digital volunteering, you can be a tremendous help in identifying and classifying changes that storms make to our coast after severe storms. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has launched iCoast, a Web application where you can view aerial photographs and help classify Read »

The API Briefing: APIs Come In Many (Data) Flavors

Jul 2, 2014 |

This week, we will look at three different APIs that demonstrate how agencies use different technologies to serve out data. Presenting data in various formats encourages developers to build on federal APIs. As past columns have shown, the innovative apps created with federal data are quickly growing. The latest API news this week is how Read »

Announcing beta.usgs.gov

Mar 21, 2014 |

In 1994 when the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) launched it’s first website, the Web was a very different place. Many websites that were launched had little consideration given to, or even had an understanding of, things such user experience, content strategies, or design. Over the next 20 years our Read »

Top