Software Development
Federal government

Fearless wins contract to run the US government’s search engine

The Baltimore dev agency is partnering with Ad Hoc to build on work developing

Fearless looks to stay community-minded with its work. (Photo via Twitter)

Fearless won a contract to run the federal government’s search engine,
Fresh off a rebrand, the Spark Baltimore-based dev agency is partnering with digital services agency Ad Hoc  to continue building and develop new features for the tool, according to Fearless partner John Foster. The five-year development contract is with the Technology Transformation Services group within the U.S. General Services Administration. is both a portal for searching information across all federal agencies, and also a tool that is embedded to enable search and provide analytics on nearly 2,000 agency websites.
After more than a dozen years, Foster said the foundation is mostly in place. So Fearless will be focused on scaling the system to ensure that relevant information can be located across different agencies. For instance, he said, if someone is searching the Federal Emergency Management Agency for info on flood relief, they’ll likely want to also know that the Small Business Administration offers disaster loan assistance.
“The idea is, how do you make the search experience seamless across every agency,” Foster said.
Fearless will also look to contribute more open source code to the federal government, Foster said.
It’s not the only project that’s a collaboration between Fearless and Ad Hoc, which grew out of the efforts to rescue upon its much-maligned launch in 2013.
The two agencies are also partnering under a contract with the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services to work on Blue Button, which allows Medicare patients – which number more than 50 million people – to view and download health records. Fearless’ work on that effort involves making information easier to consume and share after it’s downloaded.
The company’s work includes an API that allows developers or third-party providers to interact with Blue Button. As Fearless Health Innovation Officer Letitia Dzirasa told us around the time that the company won the contract earlier this year, the ability to share the information could help from a population health perspective, as well, including tracking patient outcomes.

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