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Re: [govtrack] Bounty for state-level data

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  • Scott Beardsley
    ... Bounty nazi! I m not really a betting person but I d be willing to bet (say $150 of my own $$$ on top of Josh s contribution) that some other state won t
    Message 1 of 14 , Jun 1, 2005
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      --- "Joshua Tauberer / GovTrack.us"
      <tauberer@...> wrote:

      > no bounty for you!

      Bounty nazi! I'm not really a betting person but I'd
      be willing to bet (say $150 of my own $$$ on top of
      Josh's contribution) that some other state won't be
      able to beat me and Cali. My only conditions are
      primary sources, public domain data, and CC'd or
      similar) code. Josh maybe we should quantify what
      we're looking for (say number of *meaningful* rdf
      statements)?

      > I'm not sure you should even include that in your
      > data for privacy reasons.

      Hmmm. I've thought a bit about this since you've
      brought it up. It really begs the question: should
      political representatives be held to a different
      standard with regards to privacy? Should information
      designated as "for business purposes" be publicized? I
      mean, everything I'm gathering is 1) in the public
      domain 2) volunteered by the candidates themselves and
      3) on the internet already. Knowing that, doesn't it
      make publishing this data OK?

      On the other hand, the people this might affect the
      most negatively are the casual politicians who maybe
      ran once and never fully understood that address/phone
      number were optional (and submitted their home address
      and phone). Also, most of the lifer politicians seem
      to have PO BOX's and dedicated business phones listed.

      > The VCard spec does this, I think:
      > http://www.w3.org/TR/vcard-rdf

      Thx, ya I've stumbled across vcard before. I'll hold
      off on integrating addresses and phones until we
      decide if it's kosher or not.

      > I haven't used RDF::Core, so I'm not sure how you'd
      > end up with that.

      I imagine it's a bug and I'm posted a msg to their
      list. Thanks for the explanation. RDF::Core has some
      very useful features despite my difficulties.

      Scott




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    • Joshua Tauberer / GovTrack.us
      ... Let s get someone first to say they re interested in the project. The number of statements depends a lot on what information is available. ... Hi, Lucy.
      Message 2 of 14 , Jun 1, 2005
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        Scott Beardsley wrote:
        > Josh maybe we should quantify what
        > we're looking for (say number of *meaningful* rdf
        > statements)?

        Let's get someone first to say they're interested in the project. The
        number of statements depends a lot on what information is available.

        Lucy Barber wrote:
        > As the lurking archivist from the California State Archives, I have to
        > say that I would not have any qualms about posting candidate's names and
        > addresses on a website. These people put themself in the public eye and
        > knew the information was public. The "people" deserve to know this
        > information, and Scott's efforts to make it more readily accessible are
        > great.

        Hi, Lucy. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the privacy issue.

        I guess I agree now that both the candidates knew what they were doing
        and that the people have a right to know the information, but I just
        don't want people (candidates and privacy watchdog types) to get annoyed
        with us. No one will care much now, but if this database grows, then we
        all have to be careful about publishing tons of home addresses.

        This isn't exactly comparable, but as another example, the campaign
        contribution records that the FEC makes available, part of which I'm
        turning into RDF, includes the names and towns of every individual
        making a contribution. They may or may not know what they're doing is
        on public record, but right now I sure don't want to be maintaining a
        database with that type of information.

        > They are inspiring me to work for easier access to the
        > information directly from the Secretary of State or State Archives as
        > appropriate.

        If there's any way we can help you make any headway from the inside, ask
        away.

        --
        - Joshua Tauberer

        http://taubz.for.net

        ** Nothing Unreal Exists **
      • James Stewart
        ... I was away and am only just catching up, but I wanted to throw my hat into the ring as a few of us are working on this for Michigan. How far did we get
        Message 3 of 14 , Jun 9, 2005
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          On May 31, 2005, at 12:58 PM, Joshua Tauberer / GovTrack.us wrote:
          > Hey, all. Would it help if I set a bounty on someone getting
          > state-level data into RDF?
          >
          > The ads on GovTrack are generating enough revenue that I would be
          > happy
          > to give $150 of it to anyone who accomplished getting state-level
          > legislative data for some state into RDF (to my satisfaction). :)

          I was away and am only just catching up, but I wanted to throw my hat
          into the ring as a few of us are working on this for Michigan.

          How far did we get with a list of necessary data?

          James.

          --
          James Stewart
          Play: http://james.anthropiccollective.org
          Work: http://jystewart.net
        • Ed Summers
          ... Likewise I m interested in working on Illinois data. I d like to get a checklist of things we want to collect. Joshua emailed a rough list a couple weeks
          Message 4 of 14 , Jun 9, 2005
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            >
            > I was away and am only just catching up, but I wanted to throw my hat
            > into the ring as a few of us are working on this for Michigan.
            >
            > How far did we get with a list of necessary data?

            Likewise I'm interested in working on Illinois data. I'd like to get a
            checklist of things we want to collect. Joshua emailed a rough list a
            couple weeks ago, but I think a developers wiki for govtrack could be a
            nice tool for this sort of work.

            //Ed
          • Scott Beardsley
            ... Josh s already got one going[1] and here s an ever-changing wish list[2]. I meant to put it under Collaboration but screwed up (if anyone can figure out
            Message 5 of 14 , Jun 9, 2005
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              --- Ed Summers <ehs@...> wrote:

              > a developers wiki

              Josh's already got one going[1] and here's an
              ever-changing wish list[2]. I meant to put it under
              Collaboration but screwed up (if anyone can figure out
              how to move it feel free).

              As far as how to break things down. Josh recommended
              we start with politicians (names, contact info, etc)
              then try parsing the legislation itself. This should
              make parsing the names out much easier. I've noticed
              that the position name (ie rep from dist 15) or just a
              last name or even just initials are used to refer to
              individuals.

              Scott
              -----
              [1] http://ogdex.org
              [2] http://ogdex.org/warehouse/space/Wish+List



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            • Joshua Tauberer / GovTrack.us
              ... Oh, *now* you want the bounty. :) Thinking no one on-list was going for it, I also, last week, posted the bounty idea on my blog, which is syndicated on
              Message 6 of 14 , Jun 9, 2005
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                James Stewart wrote:
                > I was away and am only just catching up, but I wanted to throw my hat
                > into the ring as a few of us are working on this for Michigan.

                and Ed Summers wrote:
                > Likewise I'm interested in working on Illinois data.

                Oh, *now* you want the bounty. :)

                Thinking no one on-list was going for it, I also, last week, posted the
                bounty idea on my blog, which is syndicated on the blog for the Mono
                project. Today I got an email from someone also interested in working on
                state level data.

                I wasn't planning on paying three bounties! But, all right, if I'm
                going to award more than one bounty, you both have to do really superb work!

                --
                - Joshua Tauberer

                http://taubz.for.net

                ** Nothing Unreal Exists **
              • Ed Summers
                ... Hehe, seriously I just want the fame more than the fortune :-) I m a software engineer who used to work in academic libraries so this project hits a sweet
                Message 7 of 14 , Jun 9, 2005
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                  > I wasn't planning on paying three bounties! But, all right, if I'm
                  > going to award more than one bounty, you both have to do really superb
                  > work!

                  Hehe, seriously I just want the fame more than the fortune :-) I'm a
                  software engineer who used to work in academic libraries so this
                  project hits a sweet spot with me.

                  Thanks for the pointers to the wiki. It appears to be
                  http://www.ogdex.com/ not ogdex.org though.

                  //Ed
                • Joshua Tauberer / GovTrack.us
                  ... For whatever reason I never really liked that particular wiki system. (Chris from DIA is running it.) So, I set up: http://www.govtrack.us/dev It s a
                  Message 8 of 14 , Jun 9, 2005
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                    Scott Beardsley wrote:
                    > --- Ed Summers <ehs@...> wrote:
                    >>a developers wiki
                    >
                    > Josh's already got one going[1] and here's an
                    > ever-changing wish list[2].

                    For whatever reason I never really liked that particular wiki system.
                    (Chris from DIA is running it.)

                    So, I set up: http://www.govtrack.us/dev

                    It's a Drupal site. Nicely customizable. Should be possible to
                    integrate blogs with it eventually.

                    Scott, James, Ed (and anyone else), create an account on the site and
                    edit the Ongoing Projects page so that it lists what you're working on.
                    For the moment, anyone registered should be able to edit any page, so
                    feel free to add any relevant content.

                    --
                    - Joshua Tauberer

                    http://taubz.for.net

                    ** Nothing Unreal Exists **
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