I've heard from a number of people with items for the agenda and/or demos. Here's what we've got thus far:
-- Virginia Carlson will talk about an organization that was an important precursor to this work: a consortium that included the Chicago Community Trust, People's Gas, the Federal Reserve Bank, and others called the "Illinois Economic Data Base Consortium"
-- Genevieve Borich will show Rockford Region Vital Signs, where they have been using a lot of employment data for community leaders to visualize relationships between employment and other community topics.
"government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth." We believe that citizens should consider government to be "us", not "them." This meetup is for citizens who are interested in seeing their federal, state, and local government function more efficiently and responsively. We are inspired by people who are actively building tools and experimenting with solutions along these lines, like the Sunlight Foundation (http://sunlightlabs.com/), and GovTrack (http://GovTrack.us). We believe that open source software practices and internet culture provide good examples of how people can work cooperatively on complex problems to produce meaningful results, but you don't have to be a techie to be part of this meetup. Whether you are an activist or a government employee, or just a hacker looking for interesting projects, come to the Open Government Chicago group to meet other interested people and get involved in making things happen.