GOV.UK offers best practice insights

On October 17, GOV.UK will replace Directgov and Business Link as the primary location to find government services and information. The site launched in beta earlier this year, and right from the start it was clear this was an ambitious and modern undertaking. The team’s decision to work with open technologies was further confirmed with the release of its design principles document. Now, the Government Digital Service (GDS) team has provided further insight into working with open technologies and web development best practice.

In Coding in the open, technical architect James Stewart said open source helped the team “focus on user needs by helping us to quickly test and iterate software and systems”. Specifically, he noted open technology meant the team could try tools that seemed right, without a “lengthy pre-sales process or costly and complex licensing arrangements”. And although GOV.UK code is, according to Stewart, heavily tailored to its system, it’s nonetheless available for others who might have overlapping needs.

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