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1063Re: [govtrack] GovTrack API (experimental)

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  • Josh Tauberer
    May 23, 2012
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      On 05/23/2012 06:37 PM, Eric Mill wrote:
      > Sorting on prognosis is a cool idea. Does that mean that bills already
      > passed into law will always occur at the top, or the bottom, or...?

      Yeah this part is weird. The only status taken into account is whether
      the bill has been reported by committee. So reported bills get a boost.
      Enacted bills get the same boost, but no additional boost for being
      passed/enacted/etc. So everything besides introduced bills get a boost.

      > you'd probably want to only de-weight
      > plain resolutions and concurrent resolutions

      The actual weights are:

      simple resolution .2
      concurrent resolution: .3
      joint resolution: .35
      bill: 1.0

      So I probably went too far with the joint resolutions.

      About half of joint resolutions are proposing an amendment to the
      constitution (=no force of law). Rather than weighting them all 0.3, I
      should probably just see why the prognosis doesn't include a factor for
      constitutional amendment resolutions and weight those accordingly (i.e.
      none of those ever pass) and, overall, weight joint resolutions the same
      as bills.

      Thanks for the reminder about that.

      - Josh Tauberer (@JoshData)

      http://razor.occams.info

      On 05/23/2012 06:37 PM, Eric Mill wrote:
      > Sorting on prognosis is a cool idea. Does that mean that bills already
      > passed into law will always occur at the top, or the bottom, or...?
      >
      > You are the last person who needs to hear the definition of resolution
      > types, but just to make sure, you'd probably want to only de-weight
      > plain resolutions and concurrent resolutions, and not joint resolutions
      > (which are bills with the force of law and are signed by the President).
      >
      > On Wed, May 23, 2012 at 6:25 PM, Josh Tauberer <tauberer@...
      > <mailto:tauberer@...>> wrote:
      >
      > On 05/17/2012 11:36 AM, Eric Mill wrote:
      >
      > if you also
      > tuned out the post office renamings. Maybe that's the only way,
      > is just
      > to filter out specific classes of bills and resolutions.
      >
      >
      > Yeah, that is worth a try. I'm now sorting bills on the advanced
      > search by a modified-prognosis score that just omits any boost that
      > post office bills and some other bills get, and also arbitrarily
      > de-weights resolutions.
      >
      > http://www.govtrack.us/__congress/bills/browse
      > <http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/browse>
      >
      > Think it's more useful than e.g. last action date? Looking at the
      > results I think so but I'm not sure.
      >
      > (I guess I could do A/B testing with users but it's so much trouble
      > to be quantitative.)
      >
      >
      > - Josh Tauberer (@JoshData)
      >
      > http://razor.occams.info
      >
      > On 05/17/2012 11:36 AM, Eric Mill wrote:
      >
      > So fun.
      >
      > We had a nice (potential) success story at Sunlight the other
      > day here,
      > where we caught
      > <https://twitter.com/#!/__JohnWonderlich/status/__202385148161953793
      > <https://twitter.com/#!/JohnWonderlich/status/202385148161953793>> a
      >
      > nasty proposed FOIA exemption in a bill being actively crafted
      > inside
      > the House through our search engine (second item down on this list,
      > right now:
      > http://scout.__sunlightfoundation.com/search/__federal_bills/section%20552%__20of%20title%205
      > <http://scout.sunlightfoundation.com/search/federal_bills/section%20552%20of%20title%205>).
      > It has no official summary, at the time it had no official
      > "short title"
      > yet and was a big paragraph of text...and as you can see my
      > highlighter
      > is failing to even provide an excerpt for that result. John had
      > to open
      > up the official text on GPO and dig through the text to find out
      > why it
      > even came up. This was a very relevant bill, but it was only spotted
      > because it was new and because John is a diligent guy.
      >
      > It had been announced for floor activity, and was introduced by the
      > committee chair, so maybe those would help in relevance - if you
      > also
      > tuned out the post office renamings. Maybe that's the only way,
      > is just
      > to filter out specific classes of bills and resolutions.
      >
      > -- Eric
      >
      > On Thu, May 17, 2012 at 11:23 AM, Josh Tauberer
      > <tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>
      > <mailto:tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>>> wrote:
      >
      > Probably, yeah. Right now the API is based on the Django
      > ORM, which
      > hits MySQL. That's not great for search so I have to see if
      > I can
      > switch it transparently to using Haystack, or else build a
      > separate
      > API for search.
      >
      > But document relevance is.... ugh. Two fun facts: The
      > highest-prognosis bills are the dumb ones like post office
      > namings,
      > so that's not good for relevance. And the top visited bills are
      > almost never the ones people should really be looking at, so
      > popularity is bad too. Fun fun.
      >
      >
      > - Josh Tauberer (@JoshData)
      >
      > http://razor.occams.info
      >
      > On 05/17/2012 11:15 AM, Eric Mill wrote:
      >
      >
      >
      > Sweet. Are you going to dive into text search at all?
      > This has
      > become
      > the most useful thing to come out of RTC, though I haven't
      > documented
      > the search methods publicly yet. It's a hard problem,
      > but you're
      > developing all sorts of nifty ways of calculating
      > relevance, so
      > you'd be
      > in a good position to do it well.
      >
      > -- Eric
      >
      > On Thu, May 17, 2012 at 6:58 AM, Josh Tauberer
      > <tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>
      > <mailto:tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>>
      > <mailto:tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>
      > <mailto:tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>>>__>
      > wrote:
      >
      > On 05/16/2012 11:39 PM, Eric Mill wrote:
      > > Super awesome, really glad to see this happen. Nice job with the
      > docs,
      > > too (and a nice reminder to redo and update my own).
      >
      > Thanks. I drew on a few ideas from RTC, e.g. I made
      > sure the
      > infrastructure I chose (Tasypie) supported __[operator]
      > filtering.
      >
      >
      > > Are you using this in anything yourself now?
      >
      > Not yet. The main reason I made it is so when people
      > come to me
      > asking for CSV exports I have a way to pull them
      > quickly. If
      > people
      > want to build actual apps, even better. (Only half
      > joking.)
      >
      > Except that the API is tightly coupled to the site's
      > models,
      > so I
      > use it at that level. (Makes it practically
      > self-documenting
      > too.)
      >
      >
      >
      > - Josh Tauberer (@JoshData)
      >
      > http://razor.occams.info
      >
      > On 05/16/2012 11:39 PM, Eric Mill wrote:
      >
      >
      >
      > Super awesome, really glad to see this happen.
      > Nice job
      > with the
      > docs,
      > too (and a nice reminder to redo and update my own).
      >
      > Are you using this in anything yourself now?
      >
      > -- Eric
      >
      > On Wed, May 16, 2012 at 9:07 PM, Josh Tauberer
      > <tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>
      > <mailto:tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>>
      > <mailto:tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>
      > <mailto:tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>>>
      > <mailto:tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>
      > <mailto:tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>>
      > <mailto:tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>
      > <mailto:tauberer@... <mailto:tauberer@...>>>__>__>
      >
      > wrote:
      >
      > I've put this off just about long enough-
      >
      > GovTrack now has an API!
      >
      > Currently bills and people are included in
      > the API.
      > (Votes and
      > committees will come later if there's interest.)
      >
      > More here:
      >
      > http://www.govtrack.us/______developers/api
      > <http://www.govtrack.us/____developers/api>
      > <http://www.govtrack.us/____developers/api
      > <http://www.govtrack.us/__developers/api>>
      >
      >
      > <http://www.govtrack.us/____developers/api
      > <http://www.govtrack.us/__developers/api>
      > <http://www.govtrack.us/__developers/api
      > <http://www.govtrack.us/developers/api>>>
      >
      > It's experimental at the moment. I don't
      > have any
      > caching on
      > it, no API
      > keys, etc. Go easy!
      >
      > --
      > - Josh Tauberer (@JoshData)
      >
      > http://razor.occams.info
      >
      >
      > ------------------------------______------
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