Here are some reasons you should be a civic hacker (and come to the June 6 civic hackathon):
- You want to make open data more useful and interesting to you and to citizens of your city (or county, state, country).
- You want to use your technology skills to make your city a better place.
- You want to work with others who are using technology to make your city a better place.
- You want to meet other people who are interested in improving (hacking) their city, whether or not it involves technology.
- You to make sure these 'civic hackers' aren't troublemakers or cybercriminals.
If you already make open data useful and interesting to you and to citizens of your city, you're essentially the definition of a civic hacker. If you want to make that open data more useful and interesting to you and others around you and aren't already doing that, you should either start now or start on June 6 at the DHMN Civic Hackathon/Appleton 2015.Reason 2: Use your technology skills to make your city a better place.
Even if you don't have a specific interest or skill related to open data, you can likely use your tech skills to help those working on open data or to make your city better in some way. Do a bit of online research about civic hacking and then jump right in. Or come to the June 6 civic hackathon in Appleton (or some other city near you that's sponsoring a hack event that day). You might even decide to learn new tech skills for manipulating and presenting open civic data.Reason 3: Work with others who are using technology to make your city a better place.
So maybe you're not a tech person, or you're a tech person who wants to use non-tech skills for hacking your city. Lots of opportunities and rewards for you as a civic hacker. See tomorrow's post on this blog for more info about what civic hackers can do other than writing code or computer programs.Reason 4: Meet other people who are interested in improving (hacking) their city, whether or not it involves technology.
Reason 5: Make sure these 'civic hackers' aren't troublemakers or cybercriminals.
Reason 5 was supposed to be humorous, although I'm sure that, no matter what you tell them or what they read, some people will think civic hackers means troublemakers or cybercriminals. Well, if you really are concerned about that, participate in a civic hacking event and find out what kind of people civic hackers really are. Judge for yourself based on personal experience rather than making assumptions based on misleading, incomplete or unrelated information.Reason 6: Other.
Maybe the five cases above don't fit you and the explanation why it would be worth your while to be a civic hacker. If that's the case, but you still are intrigued by or interested in the topic of civic hacking, I invite you to participate in the DHMN Civic Hackathon/Appleton 2015 on June 6 and let me know what your reason is. Figure out for yourself how to more accurately express why you want to be a civic hacker. Register today for the June 6 civic hackathon!After you've participated in a civic hackathon or other type of civic hacking activity, please contact Bob Waldron at bwaldron [at] gmail (dott) com and let me know what Reasons 7, 8 and 9 are to be a civic hacker.