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Re: [govtrack] XML versions of Congressional Record debates

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  • John Slevin
    Call your US Representative s office and ask them, they ll at least be able to tell you who can answer your question. alphasigbryan wrote:
    Message 1 of 11 , Feb 20 6:41 AM
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      Call your US Representative's office and ask them, they'll at least be able to tell you who can answer your question.

      alphasigbryan <helmkam1@...> wrote:
      Hello,

      I was looking at the raw XML data available on the GovTrack.us site,
      and I couldn't find XML versions of the debates from the Congressional
      Record.

      Are these available? Where would they be located?

      I've been trying to build a parser for that data for some time, and it
      has proved to be rather difficult.

      Thanks,

      -Bryan









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      John P Slevin
    • Bryan Helmkamp
      Actually, open doing some more searching, I found what I was looking for in the cr directories. It appears that the newest data is a couple weeks old
      Message 2 of 11 , Feb 20 1:32 PM
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        Actually, open doing some more searching, I found what I was looking for in the "cr" directories.  It appears that the newest data is a couple weeks old though.  How often does GovTrack update?  Are the updates found in the /data/ directory immediately?

        -Bryan


        On 2/20/06, John Slevin <directaction@... > wrote:
        Call your US Representative's office and ask them, they'll at least be able to tell you who can answer your question.

        alphasigbryan <helmkam1@...> wrote:
        Hello,

        I was looking at the raw XML data available on the GovTrack.us site,
        and I couldn't find XML versions of the debates from the Congressional
        Record.

        Are these available? Where would they be located?

        I've been trying to build a parser for that data for some time, and it
        has proved to be rather difficult.

        Thanks,

        -Bryan









        Yahoo! Groups Links

        <*> To visit your group on the web, go to:
        http://groups.yahoo.com/group/govtrack/

        <*> To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
        govtrack-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com

        <*> Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to:
        http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/






        In Liberty,

        John P Slevin


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      • Joshua Tauberer / GovTrack.us
        ... Uh, yeah, apparently I forgot to comment something out after making some changes and so GovTrack hasn t been fetching them for a few weeks. Doh. They re
        Message 3 of 11 , Feb 20 1:40 PM
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          Bryan Helmkamp wrote:
          > Actually, open doing some more searching, I found what I was looking for
          > in the "cr" directories. It appears that the newest data is a couple
          > weeks old though. How often does GovTrack update? Are the updates
          > found in the /data/ directory immediately?

          Uh, yeah, apparently I forgot to comment something out after making some
          changes and so GovTrack hasn't been fetching them for a few weeks. Doh.

          They're downloading now (and appear immediately in that directory;
          updates are daily, when I don't mess things up).

          Thanks for pointing this out!

          --
          - Joshua Tauberer

          http://taubz.for.net

          "Unfortunately, we're having this discussion. It's too bad,
          because guess who listens to the discussion: the enemy."
        • Bryan Helmkamp
          Joshua, Have you ever thought about opening the parser source code for collaboration? -Bryan
          Message 4 of 11 , Feb 20 1:50 PM
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            Joshua,

            Have you ever thought about opening the parser source code for collaboration?

            -Bryan

            On 2/20/06, Joshua Tauberer / GovTrack.us <tauberer@...> wrote:
            > Bryan Helmkamp wrote:
            > > Actually, open doing some more searching, I found what I was looking for
            > > in the "cr" directories. It appears that the newest data is a couple
            > > weeks old though. How often does GovTrack update? Are the updates
            > > found in the /data/ directory immediately?
            >
            > Uh, yeah, apparently I forgot to comment something out after making some
            > changes and so GovTrack hasn't been fetching them for a few weeks. Doh.
            >
            > They're downloading now (and appear immediately in that directory;
            > updates are daily, when I don't mess things up).
            >
            > Thanks for pointing this out!
          • Joshua Tauberer / GovTrack.us
            ... Hey, Bryan. I ve thought about it, and I m not immediately opposed to it. But, it would take some effort to tidy things up, and to set up a svn
            Message 5 of 11 , Feb 20 2:22 PM
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              Bryan Helmkamp wrote:
              > Have you ever thought about opening the parser source code for collaboration?

              Hey, Bryan.

              I've thought about it, and I'm not immediately opposed to it. But, it
              would take some effort to tidy things up, and to set up a svn
              repository, before I could do that. I'm also not eager to give the
              commercial services any freebies. And lastly, no one has expressed a
              real interest in contributing before.

              If you're really serious about it, I'll put that on my list of things to do.

              Is there anything in particular you'd be interested in doing/improving
              with the parsers?

              --
              - Joshua Tauberer

              http://taubz.for.net

              "Unfortunately, we're having this discussion. It's too bad,
              because guess who listens to the discussion: the enemy."
            • Bryan Helmkamp
              Joshua, One big thing I d like to do is get the parser to output into a SQL database, as opposed to just XML. Besides that, I d like to take a look at the
              Message 6 of 11 , Feb 20 3:11 PM
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                Joshua,

                One big thing I'd like to do is get the parser to output into a SQL
                database, as opposed to just XML.

                Besides that, I'd like to take a look at the possibility of making
                some incremental improvements... for example, perhaps it would be
                possible to keep track of who is the chair at any given time.

                Another thing I noticed is sometimes narrative actions in the CR
                source don't get included in your XML. I'd like to see about getting
                those all in there.

                If you're game for it, don't worry about tidying up the source code.
                I won't hold any GOTO statements against you. :) I'd just rather dig
                in asap.

                Let me know.

                -Bryan

                On 2/20/06, Joshua Tauberer / GovTrack.us <tauberer@...> wrote:
                > Hey, Bryan.
                >
                > I've thought about it, and I'm not immediately opposed to it. But, it
                > would take some effort to tidy things up, and to set up a svn
                > repository, before I could do that. I'm also not eager to give the
                > commercial services any freebies. And lastly, no one has expressed a
                > real interest in contributing before.
                >
                > If you're really serious about it, I'll put that on my list of things to do.
                >
                > Is there anything in particular you'd be interested in doing/improving
                > with the parsers?
                >
                > --
                > - Joshua Tauberer
                >
                > http://taubz.for.net
                >
                > "Unfortunately, we're having this discussion. It's too bad,
                > because guess who listens to the discussion: the enemy."
                >
                >
                >
                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >


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              • Joshua Tauberer
                ... Ok... ... I haven t even noticed that information in the record. ... Right. They often go on for pages with the text of legislation, amendments, and roll
                Message 7 of 11 , Feb 21 3:36 AM
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                  --- In govtrack@yahoogroups.com, "Bryan Helmkamp" <helmkam1@...> wrote:
                  > One big thing I'd like to do is get the parser to output into a SQL
                  > database, as opposed to just XML.

                  Ok...

                  > Besides that, I'd like to take a look at the possibility of making
                  > some incremental improvements... for example, perhaps it would be
                  > possible to keep track of who is the chair at any given time.

                  I haven't even noticed that information in the record.

                  > Another thing I noticed is sometimes narrative actions in the CR
                  > source don't get included in your XML. I'd like to see about getting
                  > those all in there.

                  Right. They often go on for pages with the text of legislation,
                  amendments, and roll calls that quickly clutter up the main purpose of
                  the files. I'm sure I could just set a flag to keep them in, although
                  I wouldn't want to do that for GovTrack.

                  > If you're game for it, don't worry about tidying up the source code.
                  > I won't hold any GOTO statements against you. :) I'd just rather dig
                  > in asap.

                  Heh, well, it's a bit more than that. The person-name-to-id system is
                  tied to a database which you wouldn't have access to, for instance.
                  The roll call votes stuff (which you may not be interested in now) is
                  tied to various data files and programs to generate the maps.

                  (For some reason I didn't get your message, although Yahoo says it
                  sent it, so I'm replying via Yahoo. Strange.)

                  - Josh
                • Bryan Helmkamp
                  Hi, Josh. ... In those cases, what I d like to do is display it like GovTrack does, but add a link to view the hidden content if you wish. ... If I had to do
                  Message 8 of 11 , Mar 7, 2006
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                    Hi, Josh.

                    On 2/21/06, Joshua Tauberer <tauberer@...> wrote:
                    > Right. They often go on for pages with the text of legislation,
                    > amendments, and roll calls that quickly clutter up the main purpose of
                    > the files. I'm sure I could just set a flag to keep them in, although
                    > I wouldn't want to do that for GovTrack.

                    In those cases, what I'd like to do is display it like GovTrack does,
                    but add a link to view the hidden content if you wish.

                    > Heh, well, it's a bit more than that. The person-name-to-id system is
                    > tied to a database which you wouldn't have access to, for instance.
                    > The roll call votes stuff (which you may not be interested in now) is
                    > tied to various data files and programs to generate the maps.

                    If I had to do this from scratch, I'd have to write a name-to-id
                    matching system anyway, and I'm not interested in the roll call votes
                    just yet.

                    Basically, if you could just dump the relavent portion of source on
                    me, I've got a lot of free time together and I could get it going. I
                    think that would be ideal for both of us, short term.

                    What do you think?

                    -Bryan


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                  • Joshua Tauberer / GovTrack.us
                    ... But maybe a very short term. The next time someone wants to use the sources, I don t want to go through the pain of re-explaining how it comes together,
                    Message 9 of 11 , Mar 7, 2006
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                      Bryan Helmkamp wrote:
                      > Basically, if you could just dump the relavent portion of source on
                      > me, I've got a lot of free time together and I could get it going. I
                      > think that would be ideal for both of us, short term.

                      But maybe a very short term. The next time someone wants to use the
                      sources, I don't want to go through the pain of re-explaining how it
                      comes together, how to set up the people db, etc. Plus there's no way
                      for us to keep our versions in sync as changes are made (including
                      changes to the database of people, for instance).

                      I guess the thing is that opening up the scripts is a low priority for
                      me (sorry), especially if it's just a short-term solution. I would much
                      rather enhance my scripts so that all of the original information makes
                      it into files downloadable in the data directory, and then you can just
                      use that.

                      --
                      - Joshua Tauberer

                      http://taubz.for.net

                      "Unfortunately, we're having this discussion. It's too bad,
                      because guess who listens to the discussion: the enemy."
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