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G2Xchange | ​ANALYSIS: CMS continues trend towards smaller Agile shops
G2X TAKE: The announcement late last week that CMS has chosen another small alumni shop for this 1 year $5M contract to utilize the Agile development process to establish the architecture for the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) continues what is an undeniable trend – one that leans heavily towards small agile west-coast style shops.

For this contract, NAVA PBC won what appears to be their first prime government contract ever as they beat out 18 other bidders, (yes eighteen) to pick up this task to support MIPS, a system designed to “accept quality payment program reporting data from Medicare eligible physicians, calculate a composite performance score (CPS), compare the CPS to a predetermined threshold to determine if the eligible clinician receives a payment incentive or negative adjustment, and account for the results of a physician appeal process (targeted reviews).”

NAVA PBC has certainly earned their share of credibility as one of the firms who was “brought in to help fix in the winter of 2013”.

This award, which comes on the heels of a number of new procurement approaches taken on by CMS for contracts such as DEX and the PECOS Redesign effort, along with the recent award of a new Agile BPA (ADELE) that is reported to have been released as limited competition and awarded to a select number of smaller agile shops, has large and small CMS vendors alike more than a little concerned about how this may impact the competitive landscape moving forward.

This trend is not new across the Federal space as the impact that 18F and the Digital Services group is making extends well beyond GSA. Only time will tell how much a new administration embraces these groups and new approaches, but the one thing we do know is that the firms who are unable or unwilling to adapt run the risk of watching much of the action in the near term from the sidelines.
govtech  government  healthcare  contracting  ecosystem  sparkfile 
october 2016 by sha
Wells Fargo Opened a Couple Million Fake Accounts - Bloomberg View
"Eventually we will all stop reading and writing articles about Why No Senior Executives at Big Banks Went to Prison for the Financial Crisis, but that time isn't quite yet. There are basically two views about the answer. One is that senior bankers knowingly countenanced fraud, but were good at covering it up, and prosecutors couldn't quite find the smoking gun. The other is that fraud is sometimes an emergent property of complex institutions, and that there can be widespread misbehavior at a bank without senior management approving it, or knowing about it, or wanting it."
economics  sparkfile  quotes  fail  moneyfrommoney 
september 2016 by sha
Obama's Policy Legacy: The Nation He Built - POLITICO Magazine
"And so far, the cost curve is bending even faster than White House officials had dreamed. Health care is still getting more expensive, but since 2010, the growth rate has slowed so drastically that the Congressional Budget Office has slashed its projection for government health spending in 2020 by $175 billion."

Some of the see-what-sticks cost experiments also seem to be improving care. One recent report found that infections and other “hospital-acquired conditions” have declined 17 percent since 2010, when Obamacare created financial incentives for hospitals to avoid them. That reduction saved an estimated 87,000 lives and $20 billion.

"Under Obamacare, about one-fifth of Medicare patients have already shifted into alternatives to fee-for-service, and the goal is to get half the system paying for value rather than volume by 2018."
healthcare  government  obama  america  futurehistory  politics  sparkfile 
june 2016 by sha
The Spark File — The Writer’s Room — Medium
"This is why for the past eight years or so I've been maintaining a single document where I keep all my hunches: ideas for articles, speeches, software features, startups, ways of framing a chapter I know I'm going to write, even whole books."
writing  notetaking  notebook  notizbuch  ideas  sparkfile  201606 
june 2016 by jakoubek
JrDare ||| C-H-I-P on Twitter: "Zoe Leonard, “I want a President,” 1992"
"I want a dyke for president. I want a person with aids for president and I want a fag for vice president and I want someone with no health insurance and I want someone who grew up in a place where the earth is so saturated with toxic waste that they didn't have a choiceabout getting leukemia. I want a president that had an abortion at sixteen and I want a candidate who isn't the lesser of two evils and I want a president who lost their last lover to aids, who still sees that in their eyes every time they lay down to rest, who held their lover in their arms and knew they were dying.I want a president with no airconditioning, a president who has stood on line at the clinic, at the dmv, at the welfare office and has been unemployed and layed off and sexually harassed and gaybashed and deported. I want someone who has spent the night in the tombs and had a cross burned on their lawn and survived rape. I want someone who has been in love and been hurt, who respects sex, who has made mistakes and learned from them. I want a black woman for president. I want someone with bad teeth and an attitude, someone who has eaten that nasty hospital food, someone who crossdresses and has done drugs and been in therapy. I want someone who has committed civil disobedience. And I want to know why this isn't possible. I want to know why we started learning somewhere down the line that a president is always a clown: always a john and never a hooker. Always a boss and never a worker, always a liar, always a thief and never caught.
sparkfile  quotes  poetry  president  election  politics 
march 2016 by sha
IF Data Permissions Catalogue
"Documenting design patterns for personal data sharing, example uses and research. Work in progress."
consent  ux  designpatterns  patterns  opendata  oauth  government  govclubresources  sparkfile  from twitter_favs
march 2016 by sha
Accounting for Obamacare: Inside the Company That Built | Vanity Fair
"CGI is what’s known as a “roll-up,” meaning that it was built by acquiring other businesses, or rolling them up. Indeed, since its founding in 1976, CGI has acquired more than 70 businesses. (“Please stand up if you’ve ever been acquired,” Godin asked a crowd at a company gathering last February, according to the Globe and Mail. Almost everyone in the room stood up.) In the U.S., CGI built its business with the 2004 purchase of American Management Systems, based in Arlington, Virginia, and the $1.1 billion 2010 purchase of Stanley Inc., another Arlington, Virginia–based company. Stanley’s biggest customer was the U.S. Army, and the Stanley deal, according to Cormark Securities analyst Richard Tse, was instrumental in entrenching CGI with the government. “They are quite embedded,” he told the Globe and Mail. “Stanley was an entity that was really effectively managing many of the back-office systems for government and military.” Most recently, CGI bought Logica, a management-consultancy company headquartered in the United Kingdom."

"“We believe accounting changes have driven much of the reported margin improvement.”"
government  talks  sparkfile  hcgov  moneyfrommoney 
march 2016 by sha Space Exploration
"NASA's Mars Climate Orbiter was lost in space last week because engineers failed to make a simple conversion from English units to metric, an embarrassing lapse that sent the $125 million craft fatally close to the Martian surface, investigators said yesterday."
government  fail  nava  sparkfile 
february 2016 by sha
‘WarGames’ and Cybersecurity’s Debt to a Hollywood Hack - The New York Times
"After finishing his synopsis, Reagan turned to Gen. John W. Vessey Jr., the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and asked: “Could something like this really happen?” Could someone break into our most sensitive computers? General Vessey said he would look into it.

One week later, the general returned to the White House with his answer. “WarGames,” it turned out, wasn’t far-fetched. “Mr. president,” he said, “the problem is much worse than you think.”"
culture  future  cyberculture  security  media  sparkfile  theconf 
february 2016 by sha
5 Steps To Re-create Xerox PARC's Design Magic (From The Guy Who Helped Make It)
"One of the keys to this kind of thing working is having a community. Xerox PARC and CDG are like collective MacArthur grants. You’re not funding individuals, you’re putting together a community. You’re trying to create an environment, a world. Not a thing. We never discussed what our ultimate goal was at PARC. It didn’t look like we were doing anything for the first couple years, and Xerox was upset. But the process was surprisingly efficient, because most of that trillion-dollar return was invented in the first five years.
The rule is, if you put together an artist colony and fund it, you’re going to get art. And some of it’s going to be great. The way to get something [out of it] that’s relevant to a company like Xerox or SAP is to set up a context so that the free thinking of these people is more often than not going to be about something of concern to the company. Inside an organization like PARC or CDG, a vision isn’t articulated in words. It’s more like a shared feeling, a sense of this magnetic field."
creativity  cdg  friends  bretvictor  innovation  invention  investing  sparkfile  artists  technology 
january 2016 by sha
Uber and Its Shady Partners Are Pushing Drivers into Subprime Loans
"Some emails include screenshots of the company's vehicle financing page, which says "UBER MAKES GETTING A CAR EASY" in all caps at the top. The first bullet point underneath that says "No credit required.""

"The original vision for Uber's financing plan came in 2012 from an ex–Goldman Sachs commodities trader named Andrew Chapin, who was working in Uber's New York "driver operations" group. Chapin had become an expert in how limo drivers financed their rental arrangements with livery services. He recognized that limo and taxi drivers got a fairly raw deal compared with what they could make with Uber. The catch was that many drivers were immigrants with poor or no credit histories and were in no position to finance a commercial vehicle. During a routine New York taxi commission visit with Kalanick, Chapin pitched the boss on his plan: Create a program to help finance drivers using their demonstrably reliable cash flows from Uber as a way around their spotty credit."
uber  shadowinfrastructure  economics  moneyfrommoney  recession  subprime  sharingeconomy  precarity  debt  sparkfile  quotes 
january 2016 by sha
Your Car Won't Start. Did You Make The Loan Payment? : All Tech Considered : NPR
"Lenders use the starter interrupt device, which has been installed in about 2 million vehicles, according to The New York Times, to deactivate car ignitions remotely if borrowers are late on payments. Lenders can also track cars' movements using the GPS on the device, and the device emits beeps when a payment due date is approaching."
dystopia  internetofthings  internetofshit  remoteshutdown  sharingeconomy  uber  sparkfile  from twitter
january 2016 by sha
My 2016 Wish List –
"A Public Benefit Prime Contractor

There are so many amazing new technology companies working with government today. Some of them have been part of the Gov 2.0 movement from the beginning, like SeeClickFix and Socrata, who paved the way for software as a service in government (more about their needs below). But many of the latest entrants are contractors born of the rescue effort or others like Captricity who, because of their business model, must act as sub-contractors to incumbents, often at 100% markup. At the federal level, budgets continue to allow for services at these inflated rates, despite Moore’s Law and the common expectations outside of government that services cost less and deliver more every year, not the other way around. But the need to work through prime contractors puts a burden on both government and startups that benefits no one, especially taxpayers.

One of the big ideas we discussed, but did not pursue, when I worked in the White House (no one to blame but me and bandwidth) was the concept of a public benefit prime contractor: a non-profit organization or public benefit corporation that could handle the administrative and compliance requirements on behalf of smaller companies so that they could work for the government with smaller mark-ups and more progressive contracts.  Done right, an organization like this would insist on language around open standards, open source, APIs, and agile, modular development in all their contracts, borrowing, for example, from the API language of the revised RFP, the agile language of the TechFAR, and the modular approach of the California Child Welfare RFP.  Having a player representing some of the best talent and insisting on these standard elements would move the market faster than its moving now, despite all the positive changes we are seeing."
codeforamerica  nava  goals  via:nava  sparkfile  futurehistory 
january 2016 by sha
Abalone Alliance - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"The Abalone Alliance (1977–1985) was a nonviolent civil disobedience group formed to shut down the Pacific Gas and Electric Company's Diablo Canyon Power Plant near San Luis Obispo on the central California coast in the United States. They modeled their affinity group-based organizational structure after the Clamshell Alliance which was then protesting the Seabrook Nuclear Power Plant in coastal New Hampshire."
protest  occupy  nuclear  70s  clamshellalliance  sparkfile  history 
january 2016 by sha
Clamshell Alliance - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"The overwhelming success of the Clamshell Alliance's occupation can be attributed to three factors; the planning and leadership of the Clamshell Alliance itself; the strength of the affinity group and the spirit and discipline of the occupiers; and the strong impact that women in key leadership roles exerted on the events."
clamshellalliance  protest  nuclear  history  70s  america  sparkfile  occupy 
january 2016 by sha
Narco News: Clam Magic: The Birth of a National Anti-Nuclear Movement
"This is the current draft of one chapter of a book that tells the story of a successful movement in the voices of its participants and eyewitnesses, the No Nukes movement of 1973-1982 in the United States. Al Giordano conducted most of the interviews for this chapter in 2012, 2013 and 2014, with considerable assistance from Laura García and Marine Lormant. Some quotes come from audio and film footage from the 1970s by Robbie Leppzer and also by Dan Keller and Chuck Light of Green Mountain Post Films. Some quotes came from video interviews conducted by the To the Village Square project and the Clamshell Legacy Action Mobilization (C.L.A.M.)"

"In the years since, I’ve painfully watched and reported so many other struggles that went down to humiliating defeat against the same kinds of big-money forces that the No Nukes movement triumphed over. Once one knows that victory is possible, defeat is unacceptable. From that came the motivation to document the stories of the people who did organize and win over and over again, and the stories of how they did it. My hope is that people today who want to change the world but are frustrated with today’s dominant models of ineffective “activism” will find in these stories the tactics, strategies and ways of thinking and doing things that will help them on the path to winning the present-day battles, so vital to the future of the earth and its inhabitants.

There is a better way to fight the powerful and win. I know it in my heart, because I lived it, breathed it, and grew up in it. This story, in the voices of the participants, tells in detail the steps they took, how they organized and trained themselves to win over public opinion and bring about real change. To do so, the No Nukes movement borrowed from many of the organizing tactics of the US Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s, including the deployment of a smart, strategic, and non-ideological version of nonviolence. They combined that with grassroots community organizing and a decentralized form of organization. The record shows that this was the most successful major national movement in the US since the struggle against racial segregation, and yet very little of that story has been publicly told.

During the No Nukes movement’s most intense decade, from 1973 to 1982, there were, as happens in all struggles, disagreements, internal conflicts, setbacks, losses, trials and errors, and this oral history does not seek to hide them under the clam beds of the New England coast. I think it’s better to put them all out there so that future organizers can learn from these stories about how such rocky waters can be navigated successfully."
history  nuclear  70s  80s  america  infrastructure  protest  movements  occupy  sparkfile 
january 2016 by sha
6, 73: Uummannaq
"There will be much better obituaries and eulogies for Grandma – ones that don’t move into fast-forward in 1954, ones that get to her as a person. And while my personal grief involves remembering some of these stories, that’s not why I put them here. I want to say: The experience of world war is disappearing from us in this decade. The pain in the middle of Europe’s twentieth century is compressing into encyclopedic phrases. We have these last years with our eldest friends and relatives, and that’s a private privilege. But we also have these last years with their understanding of what it means for some of the most advanced nations in the world to be openly fascist, and that’s a public need."

"I hope that we will remember the people who are leaving us now as people. I hope that, one day, we will be remembered as people."
climate  charlieloyd  via:vruba  friends  quotes  death  war  history  sparkfile 
december 2015 by sha

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