At a press conference today, Mayor Bloomberg and Rachel Sterne, the city's first ever chief digital officer, presented their "Road Map for a Digital City" today. The 60-page report, produced by Sterne and others during her first 90 days in office, solicited citizens' advice to find out what the city thinks is working and what needs work (*cough* 311 *cough*). According to the report, "Chief among public interests were calls for expanded Internet access, a refreshed nyc.gov interface, real-time information, and more digital 311 tools." What does that mean for you? The early initiatives include unlocking "important public information" via a new @nycgov Twitter page, Tumblrs for city agencies, and a streamlined Facebook page for you to rant and rave. Bloomberg also promised increased WiFi access in parks and other public areas.
It looks like tech-industry insiders, who were hoping for more concrete plans for building up broadband and closing the geek gap, will have to wait a little longer. So how far along before we catch up with Silicon Valley? “The premise of your questions is ridiculous,” said Bloomberg, adding:
“We are going to be the IT capital of the world,” he said. “New York may be where the next Google or Facebook gets born, or has already been born.”
Or perhaps it got born, but with the wrong strategy, and had to pivot to be born anew.