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COMMUNET Home

COMMUNET Home

COMMUNET  May 1993, Week 1

COMMUNET May 1993, Week 1

Subject:

Sidebar (fwd)

From:

"Arthur R. McGee" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Arthur R. McGee

Date:

Fri, 30 Apr 1993 21:12:56 -0700

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (77 lines)

As before, please reply directly to Mr. Rothman. Thank you.
 
---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: 30 Apr 93 16:51:15 EDT
From: "David H. Rothman" <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Sidebar
 
Hi, Art. Below is a new sidebar to add to the proposal. How to
insert it? Just mention a new addendum in the T of C: "--Addendum
Three: How TeleRead Could Slash the Cost of Government." And then
stick the sidebar at the end of the file. *Thanks*!
 
A minor change: In the main proposal, near the end of the graph
starting "Intelligent agents coud prowl...," the existing
material reads:
 
"A truly centralized TRnet would end such risks."
 
Please change to:
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 
"A truly centralized TRnet, with flat subscription fees, would eliminate
such risks."
 
*********************************************************************
 
                              ADDENDUM THREE:
                            HOW TELEREAD COULD
                       SLASH THE COST OF GOVERNMENT
    Visit a government office, and you'll see clerks typing away--tapping
out data from citizens and businesses. What a waste. Suppose Americans
could fill out forms on TeleReaders, then send the information over the
phone lines, *directly* to government computers.
    Easy-to-use software could guide you as you worked on your taxes or
otherwise engaged in an official transaction. These programs would be no
dummies. You'd supply the relevant facts about your family or business, and
then the software would tailor the questions to *you*. Perhaps you could
even switch on a synthesized voice--if you wanted--to reinforce the
instructions you saw on the screen.
    What's more, the programs might tie in with commercial software meeting
official specs, so that, for example, you would not have to re-enter items
from your electronic checkbook. Also, the software would let you know how
it toted up your taxes--and let you change any entry if you disagreed. The
Internal Revenue Service might challenge your return later on, but at least
you'd still have just as much control over the tax form as you do know.
    If Americans could use TeleForms, as I'll call them, we'd all come out
ahead. We would spend less time and money keeping Uncle happy. And the
bureaucracies could more easily digest the information--without any need to
rekey it, and with less need to pester citizens about missing facts.
    Moreover, since TeleReaders would use pen interfaces, not just
keyboards, citizens could even sign tax papers.
    Tax forms are just one example of how TeleRead could help Americans in
areas besides reading. What about Social Security forms? Software could
deal with all kinds of "ifs" when Americans applied for benefits. We could
slash the staffs of hundreds of local Social Security offices.
    Similarly, government at all levels could use the same technique to
handle matters ranging from drivers licenses to unemployment compensation
or health-care claims. What's more, e-forms and databases could match up
workers and jobs (in a *truly* massive way) without adding an army of
bureaucrats.
    Computerized forms, of course, are hardly a revolutionary idea. Even
now, with inexpensive software, you can create a *paper* tax-return or even
an application to work for the government. And the IRS is working toward
electronic filing of returns from ordinary citizens directly--not just from
tax-preparation firms.
    TeleRead, however, would dramatically speed up this process. It would
drive down the cost of computers for all, promote mass computer literacy
and encourage refinement of computerized forms.
    As I've said in the main proposal, a huge TeleRead program shouldn't
start immediately. But imagine the potential for economy in government when
TeleRead reaches full size and most Americans use TeleForms.
    The ultimate savings--on both the government and private sides--would
more than pay for the costs of the dial-up books and the rest of the
TeleRead program.
 
***************************************************************

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