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Join Assemblymember Phil Ting's Reset San Francisco!

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In the past decade, there has been an explosion of online services offered by government. Because technologies are ever-developing and ever-changing, we should be asking: How meaningful are these services and resources?

And because for some politicians press releases are more important than sound policy, we have to ask: Are these new features beneficial or just buggy?

The Ultimate Test: Are these services actually easier than going to City Hall — getting in your car or hopping on the bus, showing up at a public office, standing in line, and speaking with a public employee?

In the era of Gov 2.0, a movement to improve processes for, participation in, and accessibility of government by utilizing advancements in technology, conversations like these are happening across the country. Politicians love to proclaim, “there’s an app for that.” But do these new applications, API’s and platforms actually work to make our governments better and our lives easier?

The Reset Ratings offer a readout on these new online resources. Right now, we are reviewing San Francisco City and County services, but we will expand to state and federal services in the months ahead.

Each service is evaluated using five categories:

  • Accessibility: Is this service: offered in languages other than English, intuitive, available on mobile devices, and available offline?
  • Ease of Use: Can I do this in my sleep? Really?
  • Design: Are the pages and forms visually consistent? Like Steve Krug says, “Don’t make me think!”
  • The Guide: If the process isn’t intuitive, does the service offer minimally confusing instructions to walk me through it?
  • Feedback: How do I let them know when something isn’t working? Or when I am really happy that something is working?

Each category is rated on a three-point scale, the points are cumulated, and a total grade is assessed out of 15 points: 15/15 = A+, 14/15 = A, 13/15 = A-, and so on.

We’ve given you our thoughts on these services guided by this rubric, but the conversation doesn’t stop here. Tell us what you think: are we right? Then: how can the government do this better?

How do I file a complaint about MUNI online?
6 years ago

How do I file a complaint about MUNI online?

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By: Katie Short

Link: http://crmproxy.sfgov.org/Ef3/General.jsp?form=SSP_MUNI_MTA_Feedback&page=SSP_Page_MUNIEmailEnter

It’s another morning on the way to the office and you’ve watched the fourth person board the downtown-bound Muni J Church…for free. This is the …
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How do I buy a Muni Fast Pass?
6 years ago

How do I buy a Muni Fast Pass?

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By: Katie Short

Link: http://www.sf311.org/index.aspx?page=124

So to save money, you’ve decided to purchase a Muni Fast Pass good on BART for your daily commute from 24th Street/Mission to Embarcadero and your other trips around town. While you ride those …
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How do I file a whistleblower complaint?
6 years ago

How do I file a whistleblower complaint?

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By: Katie Short

Link: http://www.sfcontroller.org/index.aspx?page=31

What is whistleblowing? Not just for the IRS…

Part of being a resident of any city is being confident that the resources going into …
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How Do I Pay For a Traffic Ticket Online?
6 years ago

How Do I Pay For a Traffic Ticket Online?

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By: Katie Short

Link: http://www.sftc.org/browser_pages/Traffic/citation_online.htm

You’re leaving work late at night, driving home, and find yourself making the rookie mistake of hopping onto Market only to see those flashing lights in …
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How do I plan a trip in San Francisco?
6 years ago

How do I plan a trip in San Francisco?

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Link: You might get stuck with this: http://www6.sfgov.org/index.aspx?page=19, but really, it’s this… http://tripplanner.transit.511.org/mtc/XSLT

Trying to get across town to Russian Hill or Downtown to the Mission, and you do not have the SF …
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How do I report a pothole in San Francisco?
6 years ago

How do I report a pothole in San Francisco?

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By: Katie Short

Link: http://www.sf311.org/index.aspx?page=111

You’re taking a weekend bike ride through Golden Gate Park, and you come upon a potholethat would have taken you out had you not seen it in time. San …
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