Finally some Dutch co-operationSeptember 15, 2005
Well, the Dutch government hasn't been doing a lot of good lately but this is something I actually approve of.
What is really happening is that some illuminated mind in the Dutch government thought it would be a good idea to actually merge all the data they have. Although this might sound like a potential security risk (and it probably is considering the Dutch governments track record when it comes to all things even remotely tech-related) it means that finally all the stored data is being used effectively.
Currently schools, social workers and the police all keep different records for the same person and by merging this data social workers for example can finally tell if a kid is having trouble at school or at home. They can't of course read police reports or access school grades but the police for instance could flag people to show other government departments that something is not all right.
I think this will eventually save lives. All those different government departments can finally quickly spot troubled children and catch some pedophiles or loverboys. (Something I recently heard considering loverboys quite shocked me. Apparently these bastards already scout these girls at primary school!)
A thing that surprised me is that this kind of co-operation turns out to be a world wide first. Apparently no other country is doing this (please correct me if I am wrong).
Slightly off-topic I should mention that Pascal should really read Orwell's 1984 (or Nineteen Eighty-Four) and Huxley's Brave New World. One of his favourite films Equilibrium lends quite a lot ideas from these books and I think he would really, really like them.