Beyond the tens of thousands of existing government provided data streams (see First Wave from yesterday) there is a second wave of data that will eventually be part of Citizen Intelligence, sensor data that verifies that what government promises to do, it actually does. Once the low hanging fruit of government published data is extracted, transformed, and loaded into a data warehouse and comprehensive suites of reports are written to make that data actionable for all citizens, any remaining government activity that is not associated with a freely available data set needs verification that what the government is claiming it is doing is actually getting done.

Until quite recently, I was pegging this second wave to occur sometime next decade in the 2020s. A recent kickstarter from VMX has somewhat accelerated that timetable to the second half of this decade. The possibility of plug and play computer vision gives sousveillance a real chance at being a game changer. Establishing the principle that with government, we trust but verify on every single service moves government oversight and popular sovereignty up from mostly episodic spot checks to a realistic paradigm of constant oversight with measured results. Outside classified operations (a very small portion of government spending) we will be able to finally answer the question of how frequently government provision of services is worth the expense because we will actually know what is being done.

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