role and risks of computing in the implementation of public policy and government

Making Good Use of Technology
How can we use technology in a nondestructive way to advance human
society? Technology has placed at our disposal a multitude of possibilities,
many of which we never had before, that are shrouding our daily value- based
decision making in confusion and doubt. Doubt of our own value system, the
system we grew up with. Doubts are created because gaps in reasoning between
right and wrong has been muddled up because of the many possibilities, many
of which are new and we are no longer sure! An appropriate response to this
confusion of reasoning is multifaceted and may include the following solutions:
• Formulate new laws to strengthen our basic set of values, which are
being rendered irrelevant by technology.
• Construct a new moral and ethical conceptual framework in which
the new laws can be applied successfully.
• Launch a massive education campaign to make society aware of the
changing environment and the impact such an environment is having
on our basic values.
Nations and communities must have a regulated technology policy. Technology without a policy is dangerous technology. We are not calling for a burdensome policy. We are calling for a guided technology policy that is based
on a basket of values. In formulating a policy like this, societies must be guided
by the critical needs of their society based on a sound value system. Scientists
and researchers must also be guided by a system of values.
Strengthening the Legal System
In many countries and local governing systems, technology has outpaced
the legal system. Many laws on the books are in serious need of review and
revision. Lawyers and judges seriously need retraining to cope with the new
realities of information technology and its rapidly changing landscape. Legal
books and statutes need to be updated. The technology in many courtrooms
in many countries needs to be updated in order to handle the new breed of
criminal.
Updating the legal system to meet new technology demands cannot be
done overnight. It is complex. It needs a training component that will involve
judges, lawyers, court clerks, and every other personnel of the court. It also
needs an implementation component that involves acquiring the new technologies for the courtrooms.