President Trump on Monday signed an executive order to create a council designed to “transform and modernize” the federal government’s information technology wherewithal.
The American Technology Council (ATC), as it’ll be called, will be led by former Microsoft executive Chris Liddell, a White House official told Re/code. This is in spite of the fact that Trump is listed as the Chairman with other prominent politicians such as the Vice President, the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Homeland Security cited as members.
The executive order notes that the council will not have any impact on national security systems. Instead, the efforts of the ATC appear to be focused on how the government uses and delivers digital services to citizens. Given the vagueness of the order, however, the true scope of the ATC is next to impossible to pin down at this hour.
As Re/code highlights, Trump isn’t the first president to attempt to bring the government into the modern era. President Barack Obama essentially did much of the same through initiatives like the U.S. Digital Service.
The ATC is scheduled to hold its first meeting in June. Re/code reached out to several major tech companies including Amazon, Google, Facebook, IBM, SpaceX, Tesla and Microsoft to see if representatives from the companies would be present; none of them immediately responded to requests for comment.
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