Jeffrey A. Sorenson, Clay Johnson

U.S. Army, The Sunlight Foundation

Apps for the Army and The Sunlight Foundation Contest Winners
19 minutes, 9.1mb, recorded 2010-05-25
Jeffrey A. Sorenson, Clay Johnson.

These presentations, given at Gov 2.0 2010, introduce the results of two government competitions carried out in 2010.

In the first presentation, Jeffrey A. Sorenson, Department of the Army CIO/G6, introduces the results of "Apps for the Army," a competition carried out between March and May 2010. He gives a general history of the Army's information technology, from the 1980's projecting into the next decade, from one-way information sharing to real-time, proactive insight capability and mission media, communicated from hand-held devices. The competition's mission was to demonstrate that Army Information is listening to observations from the field and is capable of rapidly deploying necessary apps.

The A4A competition used the Rapid Access Computing Environment (RACE), developed by the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) to vet competition entries. One hundred and nineteen projects were submitted, from a spectrum of sources: Active and reserve Army, ranks from private to major; and civilian. The majority of entries were mobile apps, for Android or iPhone. Some of the winning ideas included: SHOK, which detects extreme vehicle shock event, takes pictures, and sends reports with GPS, severity, and travel information; one for creating and editing maps for disaster relief operations; one to help locate and reserve resources at MWR -- moral welfare facilities; and a handheld "physical readiness" trainer.

In the second presentation, Clay Johnson introduces the results of the Sunlight Foundation's "Design for America" competition. There were eight categories of proposed redesign, and the winners range from a redesign of the IRS website, proposing new combinations of data feeds about government spending and a visualization of government processes and current spending and recovery to the redesign of a government form, the winner offering a new passport application. Another winning entry is a boardgame-like update of Schoolhouse Rock's 70's animation "Just a Bill." The contest was sponsored by Adobe, Google, Pallantiere, and O'Rielly Media.

Through utilizing the potential and input of the wider community, both initiatives aim to encourage new ideas, and ultimately better practices, for government.


Jeffrey A. Sorenson, Department of the Army CIO/G6, was formerly the Deputy for Acquisition and Systems Management to the Assistant Secretary of the Army. He has over 20 years of acquisition experience as a certified U.S. Army Material Acquisition Manager. Product Manager for Ground Based Common Sensor-Light programs; Project Manager for Night Vision/Reconnaissance, Surveillance and Target Acquisition; Director, Acquisition Directorate; Senior Military Assistant for the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics; and the Program Executive Officer for Tactical Missiles.

Clay Johnson, of, is an open government advocate. He is the former director of Sunlight Labs at the Sunlight Foundation where he led the organization’s plunge into Open Source. He developed Sunlight’s contest model into Apps for America and Design for America and under his leadership, Sunlight Labs grew to a community of 2000 developers and designers working to open their government. He was one of Federal computing Week’s Fed 100 in 2010. Prior to Sunlight, Clay was one of the four founders of Blue State Digital, the organization that provided the technology and online strategy behind Barack Obama’s presidential campaign.


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