On May 23, 2012, President Obama launched a comprehensive Digital Government Strategy aimed at delivering better services to the American people. The Strategy is built on a simple idea: that all Americans should be able to access information from their government anywhere, anytime, and on any device.
As we note the strategy's first anniversary today, I want to congratulate the folks at DOT who have been working so hard to meet this Department's obligations in the President's strategy.
Through their efforts, the public can now access critical safety information about passenger vehicles on their mobile devices. If a father is trying to select a car safety seat as his baby becomes a toddler, the SaferCar app from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is at his fingertips to help him find the appropriate seat style. If a mother is looking for a new vehicle at her local car dealership, SaferCar is in the palm of her hand with NHTSA's 5-star safety ratings.
That is useful government data made accessible to the people who need it.
Another DOT app, SaferBus, makes motorcoach records easily accessible by bus travelers. When purchasing a ticket, SaferBus can show consumers the motorcoach company's safety history so they can be confident in their choice of carrier.
Both of these apps also make it easy for consumers to participate in government by filing a complaint--either about a vehicle, using SaferCar, or about a motorcoach company or driver, using SaferBus. And people are taking advantage of this feature; although SaferCar has only been available for a few months, app users have already submitted more than two dozen vehicle complaints.
Apps that also make it easier for citizens to contribute to their government--I think that's a step in the right direction.
Both of these apps are driven by data. And part of the President's strategy emphasizes opening up the tremendous volume of government data--not just for transparency, but also for use. That's exactly what we've done here at DOT, by making publicly available more than 2,000 sets of valuable data in formats that America's innovators can put to work.
At DOT, we know that releasing our data in easy-to-use formats is the best way to ensure that the American people can have the information they need when and where they need it.
Because--as President Lincoln said--our government is and ought to be "of the people, by the people, and for the people." President Obama understands this, and in just one year, his Digital Government Strategy has brought us closer to that ideal.