I got my marriage license today!!!
So, what does this have to do with technology policy, you might ask. Not a lot other than government is definitely old school in a lot of their processes. We had to hand write the application and then the very helpful clerk took our application and then typed it into her computer (she only misspelled my dad’s name – which was then corrected on review before final processing). Why couldn’t we have typed in the information from our computer into the same form and then given her our ID’s when we arrived to process the license? Or paid online so they don’t have to process my check? Maybe marriage licenses and passports and other important documents should have to be applied for in person, but it seems that with the technology we currently have available that there could be some sort of personal electronic identifier that would allow the government to verify identity and issue these types of documents. Certainly with the advances that have been made in biometrics a system of identification could be developed.
I know there has been talk of a “frequent traveller” card of some sort for those travellers who frequent airports more than the average, so that is certainly one way that the government is trying to streamline lines and processes. Perhaps the answer is biometrics…perhaps a national ID card is part of the solution…I know that privacy is very important and I don’t want to suggest that technology is the answer to everything, but (to make a leap here – stay with me) all of the “misplacements” of personal data (BofA, TimeWarner, etc.) have been made by lost files or boxes or stolen files (the hard, physical kind), not by someone hacking into a system and stealing the data (and, no, phishing will not be discussed in this blog)…
Yes, this is a meandering, stream-of-consciousness blog that I thought might somehow get to how government can better serve citizens by having citizens serve themselves through electronic government systems and processes, however, as I proofread this I realize that it is a meandering, stream-of-consciousness entry, so I will conclude with: I’M GETTING MARRIED! My fiancee is the most beautiful, smartest, funniest, fun woman in the world. We got our marriage license today.