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links for 2009-08-03

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  • Information Technology: Why It Matters Advances in information technology offer state leaders enormous opportunity to make government more effective and also save money. Moving online can improve performance by offering services to citizens and businesses faster and cheaper.

    In addition, states have significant IT costs across the vast number of agencies and improving the collaboration and coordination of IT operations can both improve service to citizens and greatly impact the bottom line.

    Key Considerations & Links to State Examples

    States looking to improve service and save money by improving their information technology operations should move on two fronts:

    * Improve online services for both citizens and business. States are offering more services online, but most experts agree they could do more by focusing on the usability of their sites as well as consolidating and streamlining information and services. Learn more and find state examples.

    (tags: State IT Pew)
  • Dog-friendly dog training: Ian Dunbar on TED.com
    Speaking at the 2007 EG conference, trainer Ian Dunbar asks us to see the world through the eyes of our beloved dogs. By knowing our pets' perspective, we can build their love and trust. It's a message that resonates well beyond the animal world.(Recorded December 2007 in Los Angeles, California. Duration: 14:46)
  • Nearly 1 in 10 members of the American work force are unemployed — a level not seen in 27 years.
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    Multimedia
    How Different Groups Spend Their DayInteractive Graphic
    How Different Groups Spend Their Day

    Without a paying job, these Americans have picked up other forms of labor: vacuuming the house, sending out résumés, taking classes and caring for family. And the unemployed have more time for leisure and socializing.

    Sunday Business analyzed new data from the American Time Use Survey to compare the 2008 weekday activities of the employed and unemployed. The comparison may seem obvious, but differences in time spent by these two groups can be striking. On an average weekday, the unemployed sleep an hour more than their employed peers. They tidy the house, do laundry and yard work for more than two hours, twice as much as the employed. The unemployed also spend an extra hour in the classroom and an additional 70 minutes in front of the television.

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