Ellen Miller is a warrior, and more-- a funder and builder of armaments designed to directly address and marginalize one of the greatest sources of power held by plutocrats, corporatists and the elected officials and government appointees they partner with-- SECRECY. There are good reasons she's been described as one of the most influential women in technology.
I've come to believe that secrecy and "opacity," the opposite of transparency, are tools of top-down powers. Transparency and Open government are essential for the bottom-up revolution to go forward full force.
Ellen Miller is executive director and co-founder of the sunlight foundation.
Wikipedia says she is a political activist an advocate for Open Government, who promotes the use of technology to increase transparency in government, and co-founded both the non-profit 501 C3 Sunlight Foundation and its sister political organization Sunlight Network
She has held several staff-level positions in the US Government: House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (1975), Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs (1976--1979), and the Senate Intelligence Committee (1980)
she's been listed as among
- The Most Influential Women in Technology, Fast Company, January 2009. 
- 15 People The Next President Should Listen To, WIRED Magazine, October, 2008. 
She's stopped counting after creating 18 tools and websites.
"Almost everything Sunlight does uses technology to advance the information that ordinary citizens and journalists have at their fingertips, to engage citizens in demanding accountability, enabling them to tell their government what they think. The phenomenon is only going to getting bigger."
Very Rough Interview Notes- not an article-- more teasers to get you to listen to the interview. Mostly my questions
How are transparency and power connected?
Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants-- Justice Brandeiss
How do you work to promote transparency as a value. Have you looked at it as a value and what are the dimensions of that value?
Are there prehistoric indigenous culture, or historical precedents from the founders of the US? What are the mythic dimensions, the stories we have from history, from the classics.
Basic definitions, transparency, secrecy, and the Sunlight foundation
Tell me how journalists and activists can and do use your tools.
Sunlight creates lots of datasets
APIs just reached their one billionth use.
Who are the transparency heroes? The friends really helping your cause?
the hundreds of thousands of people working on transparency and transparency technologies.
How many people using APIs
5000 registered users with keys.
How does transparency empower people from the bottom up?
You've said "Connections between us are what are so critically important""
I believe were in the midst of a connection revolution. Can you talk about the tie between connections and transparency and secrecy?
NSA-- are they already doing the connections?
Open government, transparent open government-- data made freely available.
What is the Sunlight network?
What is transparency camp?
major annual gathering of sunlight foundation
What about business?
influence explorer dataset. Type in any company, member of congress or state official
General Electric are biggest lobbying force in DC -- they spend most money
What are some of the other ways to look at influence?
Greatest dollar is National Education Assoc.
Third is Las Vegas Sands (sheldon Adelson)
What's the best place to go to to find the dozens of tools you've created.
besides General ELectric
Qui bono. Who benefits from
who benefits from secrecy? Who benefits from transparency and openness
In terms of who profits, who can benefit-- who profits from transparency and open data?
weather.com based on open data
bloomberg gov open data.
I'm guessing that already use of open data has spawned industries worth billions.
effect of transparency on trust
what dreams you started with have come true?
dream that people will be more able and open to being more engaged with government, that government will be more trustworthy will enhance engagement, more voting"
How does the US fit in, i terms of transparency and secrecy--
Not number 1
International consortium-- open government partnership
moved from 2 governments participating to 60
What can listeners and readers do to help you?
go to the website
Last question-- university graduate studies--
are schools teaching transparency--
don't silo as study-- address as open government, open societies
NYU has an open gov lab. http://thegovlab.org/about/team/
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