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Re: [govtrack] I need help!

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  • Harvey Frey
    It s really odd that the OLC has no drafting standards. The Dutch and Italians are way ahead on that, and the UN is supporting Akoma Ntosa for new African
    Message 1 of 24 , Jun 29, 2008
      It's really odd that the OLC has no drafting standards.
      The Dutch and Italians are way ahead on that, and the UN is supporting Akoma Ntosa for new African states.
       
      Such standards could certainly be imposed here by statute, but I can't imagine who in Congress would be interested in pushing that.
       
      Ambiguity often suits the purposes of the legislators by:
      allowing irreconcilable parties to believe that they had agreed to different policies; making it hard for rank and file to know what they're actually being asked to vote for; providing deniability when things work out poorly; and, as we see in the USA Patriot Act, making it difficult for potential critics to even determine what the law says. 
       
      But there might be a benefit to an independent program which could objectively parse the logic of proposed bills and provide that to congressional staff.
       
      Just providing internal hyperlinks would make it so much easier for staffers to understand a bill that they might study that instead of the official version, once they learned it could be trusted to be non-partisan.
       
      Harvey
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Sunday, June 29, 2008 10:15 PM
      Subject: Re: [govtrack] I need help!

      Joe Germuska wrote:
      > On Jun 29, 2008, at 7:01 PM, Josh Tauberer wrote:
      >> (It would be nice if Congress provided these ids, but they don't, so
      >> I'm working on generating them.)
      >
      > Regarding the idea that it would be nice if Congress provided these IDs,
      > and also things like this
      > <http://readablelaws.org/index.php?title=Help:Contributing> from
      > Readable Laws:
      >> When translating laws, pay special attention to de-referencing them.
      >> One of the reasons bills are so hard to read is their failure to
      >> actually say /what/ they are doing. Instead, they often just modify
      >> existing laws. Here's an example from the USA PATRIOT Act:
      >>   Section 105(e)(1) of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (50 U.S.C. 1805(e)(1)) is amended by--
      >>    (A) inserting `(A)' after `except that'; and
      >>    (B) inserting before the period the following:...
      > It seems worthwhile to me that citizens push for a more modern approach
      > to legislation.  It is nonsense that something like the above would not
      > also include the updated text in its entirety, especially in an
      > electronic age.

      Actually I sympathize with the bill writers, who are often, I believe,
      from the Office of Legislative Counsel (OLC), separate for House and
      Senate it seems. When writing code --- be it legal or computer --- you
      want to be as concise as possible. The fewer words the less likelihood
      of errors, and the easier it is to see exactly what the precise
      modification is (though more difficult to understand it).

      So I would prefer separate annotations.

      > I understand that GovTrack is focused on machine-solvable problems

      Only because that's what I've been capable of doing. Crowd-sourcing is
      certainly on topic for this list.

      > So: is there any traction in Congress itself or in the
      > activist community to push for some process rationalization?

      I haven't heard of anything significant.

      > Is this hopelessly naƮve?

      Depends on what you want. Additionally writing annotations doesn't seem
      like something particularly difficult for the OLC to do, but it would
      require funding.

      Grander process changes are probably hopeless without small incremental
      steps.

      > I'm going to try to attend the IGOTF meeting <http://igotf.org/> in
      > Chicago in August (since I live here). This is the kind of thing I hope
      > to talk about with people and find out how I can help. 

      Wish I could go.

      --
      - Josh Tauberer
      - GovTrack.us

      http://razor.occams.info

      "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation!  Yields
      falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
      Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)

      ------------------------------------

    • Pierre Demester
      any thoughts of using Coldfusion ? Pierre _____ From: govtrack@yahoogroups.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Josh Tauberer Sent: Monday, June
      Message 2 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008
        any thoughts of using Coldfusion ?
         
        Pierre
         


        From: govtrack@yahoogroups.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Josh Tauberer
        Sent: Monday, June 30, 2008 1:04 AM
        To: govtrack@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [govtrack] I need help!

        > I've attended several
        > conferences on Legislative markup, but

        didn't find much of value, especially
        > as I'm interested primarily in
        Semantic annotation, and the state of the art
        > still seems to be
        syntactic (dates, addresses, etc.)

        If you learn anything interesting, I'd love to hear about it.

        > What is your preferred language for the
        scripts you write to manipulate
        > the bill text?

        I use Perl. If I were to start over again today I'd probably use Python.
        But, to the extent anyone wants to contribute, I would prefer Perl so
        they could reuse my existing routines, but I would gladly accept Python
        and maybe other languages.

        > Do you have an ontology for the XML you
        generate?

        I have some documentation of most things here:
        http://wiki. govtrack. us/index. php/Data_ Directory

        But it doesn't include anything about the structure of bill text XML
        that I generate, in part because it comes from HTML from THOMAS and I
        don't have a complete (or any) description of that.

        --
        - Josh Tauberer
        - GovTrack.us

        http://razor. occams.info

        "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
        falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
        Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)
      • Josh Tauberer
        ... I actually don t know the first thing about ColdFusion. -- - Josh Tauberer - GovTrack.us http://razor.occams.info Yields falsehood when preceded by its
        Message 3 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008
          Pierre Demester wrote:
          > any thoughts of using Coldfusion ?

          I actually don't know the first thing about ColdFusion.

          --
          - Josh Tauberer
          - GovTrack.us

          http://razor.occams.info

          "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
          falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
          Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)
        • Pierre Demester
          Coldfusion is similar to ASP (Microsoft) and PHP (open source)... in that it is a scripting language. PHP has Object Orientation (OO) - whereas Coldfusion (CF)
          Message 4 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008
            Coldfusion is similar to ASP (Microsoft) and PHP (open source)... in that it is a scripting language.
             
            PHP has Object Orientation (OO) - whereas Coldfusion (CF) (developed (Jeremy) Allaire and Ben Forta, then sold to Macromedia, bought by Adobe) resembles HTML.
             
            I, unfortunately have not had the opportunity (not currently cost effective to upgrade) to use CF 8 - which I think includes OO... but I might be incorrect.
             
            If you know HTML - you can learn CF fairly quickly.
            -- to fully utilize PHP... you need an understanding of OO.. which is a barrier that most people cannot cross.
            --- therefore, most PHP installs are not fully utilized. The "power is there"... the knowledge lacks.
             
            Another major difference is that PHP is free.
            -- CF starts @ $700... $2500 if you need the Enterprise edition. Most people don't.
             
            My take - you get what you pay for, Free is nice. There's a price for Quality.
             
            A third obstable is the installation base. Because PHP is free - there are literally thousands (upon thousands) of companies who "toss in" PHP for free.
            -- PHP is part of the standard linux install. All of my servers have PHP - I rarely use it.
             
            Because CF has a cost... the number of companies providing hosting services drops dramatically.
            - most companies who switch to CF... provide their own hosting services
             
            It's the same issues with databases
            -- MySQL (free / open source / hosted by 1000's upon 1000's)
            -- as compared to Microsoft SQL Server (very expensive / professional results).
             
            Many large entities use CF... Amazon.com, EBay.com, Senate.gov, Jaguar (the car manufacturer)... literally too many to list.
            - the number of PHP / MySql installations are uncountable.
             
            I think I've even come a Whitehouse.gov section that was CF based.
            -- some entities develop their entire site with CF - others only develop a portion.
             
            CF works with Sun Solaris, Windows IIS, and Linux.
             
            Pierre
             
             
             
             


            From: govtrack@yahoogroups.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Josh Tauberer
            Sent: Wednesday, July 02, 2008 9:33 AM
            To: govtrack@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: Re: [govtrack] I need help!

            Pierre Demester wrote:

            > any thoughts of using Coldfusion ?

            I actually don't know the first thing about ColdFusion.

            --
            - Josh Tauberer
            - GovTrack.us

            http://razor. occams.info

            "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
            falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
            Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)

          • Derek Willis
            Please, please, not cold fusion. -1 (or as many as I can muster). ... -- -- Derek Willis dwillis@gmail.com http://www.thescoop.org/docs/
            Message 5 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008
              Please, please, not cold fusion. -1 (or as many as I can muster).

              On Wed, Jul 2, 2008 at 10:14 AM, Pierre Demester <pierre@...> wrote:
              > Coldfusion is similar to ASP (Microsoft) and PHP (open source)... in that it
              > is a scripting language.
              >
              > PHP has Object Orientation (OO) - whereas Coldfusion (CF) (developed
              > (Jeremy) Allaire and Ben Forta, then sold to Macromedia, bought by Adobe)
              > resembles HTML.
              >
              > I, unfortunately have not had the opportunity (not currently cost effective
              > to upgrade) to use CF 8 - which I think includes OO... but I might be
              > incorrect.
              >
              > If you know HTML - you can learn CF fairly quickly.
              > -- to fully utilize PHP... you need an understanding of OO.. which is a
              > barrier that most people cannot cross.
              > --- therefore, most PHP installs are not fully utilized. The "power is
              > there"... the knowledge lacks.
              >
              > Another major difference is that PHP is free.
              > -- CF starts @ $700... $2500 if you need the Enterprise edition. Most people
              > don't.
              >
              > My take - you get what you pay for, Free is nice. There's a price for
              > Quality.
              >
              > A third obstable is the installation base. Because PHP is free - there are
              > literally thousands (upon thousands) of companies who "toss in" PHP for
              > free.
              > -- PHP is part of the standard linux install. All of my servers have PHP - I
              > rarely use it.
              >
              > Because CF has a cost... the number of companies providing hosting services
              > drops dramatically.
              > - most companies who switch to CF... provide their own hosting services
              >
              > It's the same issues with databases
              > -- MySQL (free / open source / hosted by 1000's upon 1000's)
              > -- as compared to Microsoft SQL Server (very expensive / professional
              > results).
              >
              > Many large entities use CF... Amazon.com, EBay.com, Senate.gov, Jaguar (the
              > car manufacturer)... literally too many to list.
              > - the number of PHP / MySql installations are uncountable.
              >
              > I think I've even come a Whitehouse.gov section that was CF based.
              > -- some entities develop their entire site with CF - others only develop a
              > portion.
              >
              > CF works with Sun Solaris, Windows IIS, and Linux.
              >
              > Pierre
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > ________________________________
              > From: govtrack@yahoogroups.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
              > Of Josh Tauberer
              > Sent: Wednesday, July 02, 2008 9:33 AM
              > To: govtrack@yahoogroups.com
              > Subject: Re: [govtrack] I need help!
              >
              > Pierre Demester wrote:
              >> any thoughts of using Coldfusion ?
              >
              > I actually don't know the first thing about ColdFusion.
              >
              > --
              > - Josh Tauberer
              > - GovTrack.us
              >
              > http://razor.occams.info
              >
              > "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
              > falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
              > Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)
              >
              >



              --
              --
              Derek Willis
              dwillis@...
              http://www.thescoop.org/docs/
            • Pierre Demester
              there ya go. I knew there would be at least one. Pierre _____ From: govtrack@yahoogroups.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Derek Willis Sent:
              Message 6 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008
                there ya go. I knew there would be at least one.
                 
                Pierre
                 


                From: govtrack@yahoogroups.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Derek Willis
                Sent: Wednesday, July 02, 2008 10:19 AM
                To: govtrack@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: Re: [govtrack] I need help!

                Please, please, not cold fusion. -1 (or as many as I can muster).

                On Wed, Jul 2, 2008 at 10:14 AM, Pierre Demester <pierre@.... us> wrote:

                > Coldfusion is similar to ASP (Microsoft) and PHP (open source)...
                in that it
                > is a scripting language.
                >
                > PHP has Object
                Orientation (OO) - whereas Coldfusion (CF) (developed
                > (Jeremy) Allaire
                and Ben Forta, then sold to Macromedia, bought by Adobe)
                > resembles
                HTML.
                >
                > I, unfortunately have not had the opportunity (not
                currently cost effective
                > to upgrade) to use CF 8 - which I think
                includes OO... but I might be
                > incorrect.
                >
                > If you know
                HTML - you can learn CF fairly quickly.
                > -- to fully utilize PHP... you
                need an understanding of OO.. which is a
                > barrier that most people cannot
                cross.
                > --- therefore, most PHP installs are not fully utilized. The
                "power is
                > there"... the knowledge lacks.
                >
                > Another major
                difference is that PHP is free.
                > -- CF starts @ $700... $2500 if you need
                the Enterprise edition. Most people
                > don't.
                >
                > My take - you
                get what you pay for, Free is nice. There's a price for
                >
                Quality.
                >
                > A third obstable is the installation base. Because PHP
                is free - there are
                > literally thousands (upon thousands) of companies
                who "toss in" PHP for
                > free.
                > -- PHP is part of the standard linux
                install. All of my servers have PHP - I
                > rarely use it.
                >
                >
                Because CF has a cost... the number of companies providing hosting services
                > drops dramatically.
                > - most companies who switch to
                CF... provide their own hosting services
                >
                > It's the same issues
                with databases
                > -- MySQL (free / open source / hosted by 1000's upon
                1000's)
                > -- as compared to Microsoft SQL Server (very expensive /
                professional
                > results).
                >
                > Many large entities use CF...
                Amazon.com, EBay.com, Senate.gov, Jaguar (the
                > car manufacturer) ...
                literally too many to list.
                > - the number of PHP / MySql installations
                are uncountable.
                >
                > I think I've even come a Whitehouse.gov section
                that was CF based.
                > -- some entities develop their entire site with CF -
                others only develop a
                > portion.
                >
                > CF works with Sun
                Solaris, Windows IIS, and Linux.
                >
                >
                Pierre
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                ____________ _________ _________ __
                > From:
                href="mailto:govtrack%40yahoogroups.com">govtrack@yahoogroup s.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroup s.com] On Behalf
                > Of Josh Tauberer
                > Sent: Wednesday, July 02, 2008 9:33
                AM
                > To:
                href="mailto:govtrack%40yahoogroups.com">govtrack@yahoogroup s.com
                >
                Subject: Re: [govtrack] I need help!
                >
                > Pierre Demester
                wrote:
                >> any thoughts of using Coldfusion ?
                >
                > I actually
                don't know the first thing about ColdFusion.
                >
                > --
                > - Josh
                Tauberer
                > - GovTrack.us
                >
                >
                href="http://razor.occams.info">http://razor. occams.info
                >
                >
                "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
                > falsehood when
                preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
                > Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher,
                Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)
                >
                >

                --
                --
                Derek Willis
                dwillis@gmail. com
                http://www.thescoop .org/docs/

              • Mark Fredrickson
                I call bikeshed on this discussion[1]. Code is gold: if you can write something in Coldfusion, do so. If you can write it in something else, do so. Best of
                Message 7 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008
                  I call "bikeshed" on this discussion[1]. Code is gold: if you can write something in Coldfusion, do so. If you can write it in something else, do so.

                  Best of luck,
                  -M


                  On Jul 2, 2008, at 9:19 AM, Derek Willis wrote:

                  Please, please, not cold fusion. -1 (or as many as I can muster).

                  On Wed, Jul 2, 2008 at 10:14 AM, Pierre Demester <pierre@.... us> wrote:
                  > Coldfusion is similar to ASP (Microsoft) and PHP (open source)... in that it
                  > is a scripting language.
                  >
                  > PHP has Object Orientation (OO) - whereas Coldfusion (CF) (developed
                  > (Jeremy) Allaire and Ben Forta, then sold to Macromedia, bought by Adobe)
                  > resembles HTML.
                  >
                  > I, unfortunately have not had the opportunity (not currently cost effective
                  > to upgrade) to use CF 8 - which I think includes OO... but I might be
                  > incorrect.
                  >
                  > If you know HTML - you can learn CF fairly quickly.
                  > -- to fully utilize PHP... you need an understanding of OO.. which is a
                  > barrier that most people cannot cross.
                  > --- therefore, most PHP installs are not fully utilized. The "power is
                  > there"... the knowledge lacks.
                  >
                  > Another major difference is that PHP is free.
                  > -- CF starts @ $700... $2500 if you need the Enterprise edition. Most people
                  > don't.
                  >
                  > My take - you get what you pay for, Free is nice. There's a price for
                  > Quality.
                  >
                  > A third obstable is the installation base. Because PHP is free - there are
                  > literally thousands (upon thousands) of companies who "toss in" PHP for
                  > free.
                  > -- PHP is part of the standard linux install. All of my servers have PHP - I
                  > rarely use it.
                  >
                  > Because CF has a cost... the number of companies providing hosting services
                  > drops dramatically.
                  > - most companies who switch to CF... provide their own hosting services
                  >
                  > It's the same issues with databases
                  > -- MySQL (free / open source / hosted by 1000's upon 1000's)
                  > -- as compared to Microsoft SQL Server (very expensive / professional
                  > results).
                  >
                  > Many large entities use CF... Amazon.com, EBay.com, Senate.gov, Jaguar (the
                  > car manufacturer) ... literally too many to list.
                  > - the number of PHP / MySql installations are uncountable.
                  >
                  > I think I've even come a Whitehouse.gov section that was CF based.
                  > -- some entities develop their entire site with CF - others only develop a
                  > portion.
                  >
                  > CF works with Sun Solaris, Windows IIS, and Linux.
                  >
                  > Pierre
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > ____________ _________ _________ __
                  > From: govtrack@yahoogroup s.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroup s.com] On Behalf
                  > Of Josh Tauberer
                  > Sent: Wednesday, July 02, 2008 9:33 AM
                  > To: govtrack@yahoogroup s.com
                  > Subject: Re: [govtrack] I need help!
                  >
                  > Pierre Demester wrote:
                  >> any thoughts of using Coldfusion ?
                  >
                  > I actually don't know the first thing about ColdFusion.
                  >
                  > --
                  > - Josh Tauberer
                  > - GovTrack.us
                  >
                  > http://razor. occams.info
                  >
                  > "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
                  > falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
                  > Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)
                  >
                  > 

                  -- 
                  --
                  Derek Willis
                  dwillis@gmail. com
                  http://www.thescoop .org/docs/


                • Neil Rest
                  Code has to be maintained. When a development project goes live, less than half its full life-cycle cost has been spent; the rest is modification. Personally,
                  Message 8 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008
                    Code has to be maintained.
                    When a development project goes live, less than half its full
                    life-cycle cost has been spent; the rest is modification.
                    Personally, I'm thumbs up on PHP (objects available, not mandatory,
                    btw), and thumbs down on ColdFusion (proprietary add-on to a graphics
                    package), but regardless, one of the first rules of good code is Make
                    it readable, Make it modifiable.
                    It might run like gold and still be bad code.


                    At 09:27 AM 7/2/2008, Mark Fredrickson <mark.m.fredrickson@...> wrote:
                    >I call "bikeshed" on this discussion[1]. Code is gold: if you can
                    >write something in Coldfusion, do so. If you can write it in
                    >something else, do so.
                    >
                    >Best of luck,
                    >-M
                    >
                    >[1] <http://www.bikeshed.com/>http://www.bikeshed.com/ and
                    ><http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Color_of_the_bikeshed>http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Color_of_the_bikeshed
                    >
                    >On Jul 2, 2008, at 9:19 AM, Derek Willis wrote:
                    >
                    >>Please, please, not cold fusion. -1 (or as many as I can muster).
                    >>
                    >>On Wed, Jul 2, 2008 at 10:14 AM, Pierre Demester
                    >><<mailto:pierre%40in.ternet.us>pierre@...! .us> wrote:
                    >> > Coldfusion is similar to ASP (Microsoft) and PHP (open
                    >> source)... in that it
                    >> > is a scripting language.
                    >> >
                    >> > PHP has Object Orientation (OO) - whereas Coldfusion (CF) (developed
                    >> > (Jeremy) Allaire and Ben Forta, then sold to Macromedia, bought by Adobe)
                    >> > resembles HTML.


                    Neil
                    --
                    NeilRest@...

                    Plato had defined the human being as an animal, biped and
                    featherless, and was applauded. Diogenes plucked a fowl and brought
                    it into the lecture-room with the words, 'Here is Plato's human
                    being.' In consequence of which there was added to the definition,
                    'having broad nails'.
                  • Pierre Demester
                    i agree Pierre _____ From: govtrack@yahoogroups.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Mark Fredrickson Sent: Wednesday, July 02, 2008 10:27 AM To:
                    Message 9 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008
                      i agree
                       
                      Pierre
                       


                      From: govtrack@yahoogroups.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Mark Fredrickson
                      Sent: Wednesday, July 02, 2008 10:27 AM
                      To: govtrack@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: Re: [govtrack] I need help!

                      I call "bikeshed" on this discussion[1] . Code is gold: if you can write something in Coldfusion, do so. If you can write it in something else, do so.


                      Best of luck,
                      -M


                      On Jul 2, 2008, at 9:19 AM, Derek Willis wrote:

                      Please, please, not cold fusion. -1 (or as many as I can muster).

                      On Wed, Jul 2, 2008 at 10:14 AM, Pierre Demester <pierre@.... us> wrote:
                      > Coldfusion is similar to ASP (Microsoft) and PHP (open source)... in that it
                      > is a scripting language.
                      >
                      > PHP has Object Orientation (OO) - whereas Coldfusion (CF) (developed
                      > (Jeremy) Allaire and Ben Forta, then sold to Macromedia, bought by Adobe)
                      > resembles HTML.
                      >
                      > I, unfortunately have not had the opportunity (not currently cost effective
                      > to upgrade) to use CF 8 - which I think includes OO... but I might be
                      > incorrect.
                      >
                      > If you know HTML - you can learn CF fairly quickly.
                      > -- to fully utilize PHP... you need an understanding of OO.. which is a
                      > barrier that most people cannot cross.
                      > --- therefore, most PHP installs are not fully utilized. The "power is
                      > there"... the knowledge lacks.
                      >
                      > Another major difference is that PHP is free.
                      > -- CF starts @ $700... $2500 if you need the Enterprise edition. Most people
                      > don't.
                      >
                      > My take - you get what you pay for, Free is nice. There's a price for
                      > Quality.
                      >
                      > A third obstable is the installation base. Because PHP is free - there are
                      > literally thousands (upon thousands) of companies who "toss in" PHP for
                      > free.
                      > -- PHP is part of the standard linux install. All of my servers have PHP - I
                      > rarely use it.
                      >
                      > Because CF has a cost... the number of companies providing hosting services
                      > drops dramatically.
                      > - most companies who switch to CF... provide their own hosting services
                      >
                      > It's the same issues with databases
                      > -- MySQL (free / open source / hosted by 1000's upon 1000's)
                      > -- as compared to Microsoft SQL Server (very expensive / professional
                      > results).
                      >
                      > Many large entities use CF... Amazon.com, EBay.com, Senate.gov, Jaguar (the
                      > car manufacturer) ... literally too many to list.
                      > - the number of PHP / MySql installations are uncountable.
                      >
                      > I think I've even come a Whitehouse.gov section that was CF based.
                      > -- some entities develop their entire site with CF - others only develop a
                      > portion.
                      >
                      > CF works with Sun Solaris, Windows IIS, and Linux.
                      >
                      > Pierre
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > ____________ _________ _________ __
                      > From: govtrack@yahoogroup s.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroup s.com] On Behalf
                      > Of Josh Tauberer
                      > Sent: Wednesday, July 02, 2008 9:33 AM
                      > To: govtrack@yahoogroup s.com
                      > Subject: Re: [govtrack] I need help!
                      >
                      > Pierre Demester wrote:
                      >> any thoughts of using Coldfusion ?
                      >
                      > I actually don't know the first thing about ColdFusion.
                      >
                      > --
                      > - Josh Tauberer
                      > - GovTrack.us
                      >
                      > http://razor. occams.info
                      >
                      > "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
                      > falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
                      > Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)
                      >
                      > 

                      -- 
                      --
                      Derek Willis
                      dwillis@gmail. com
                      http://www.thescoop .org/docs/


                    • Dale Moore
                      Is c#, .NET or MONO an option?
                      Message 10 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008

                        Is c#, .NET or MONO an option?

                      • Jeremy Dunck
                        ... I use Perl. If I were to start over again today I d probably use Python. But, to the extent anyone wants to contribute, I would prefer Perl so they could
                        Message 11 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008
                          On Wed, Jul 2, 2008 at 10:53 AM, Dale Moore <DaleEMoore@...> wrote:
                          > Is c#, .NET or MONO an option?
                          >

                          In case you didn't see Josh's prior response, quoting:

                          > What is your preferred language for the scripts you write to manipulate
                          > the bill text?

                          I use Perl. If I were to start over again today I'd probably use Python.
                          But, to the extent anyone wants to contribute, I would prefer Perl so
                          they could reuse my existing routines, but I would gladly accept Python
                          and maybe other languages.
                        • Pierre Demester
                          I m a little confused - Coldfusion (proprietary add-on to a graphic package) ??? Are you saying Coldfusion is a graphic application ? ... As for PHP - it s not
                          Message 12 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008
                            I'm a little confused
                            - Coldfusion (proprietary add-on to a graphic package) ???
                             
                            Are you saying Coldfusion is a graphic application ?
                             
                            -----------------------------------
                             
                            As for PHP - it's not a bad language - like any language... it has it's benefits and drawbacks.
                             
                            In my own opinion - proprietary is not always a bad choice. Most of the application we develop and have developed - have been for proprietary purposes.
                             
                            The scale and use of our applications are always a large consideration when reviewing the range of choices (development languages) available.
                             
                            Our actual preferred language is C++... though not very useful as web language - it suffices well for backend development.
                             
                            We primarily use it for real-time interaction.
                             
                            Pierre
                             


                            From: govtrack@yahoogroups.com [mailto:govtrack@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Neil Rest
                            Sent: Wednesday, July 02, 2008 11:03 AM
                            To: govtrack@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: Re: [govtrack] I need help!

                            Code has to be maintained.
                            When a development project goes live, less than half its full
                            life-cycle cost has been spent; the rest is modification.
                            Personally, I'm thumbs up on PHP (objects available, not mandatory,
                            btw), and thumbs down on ColdFusion (proprietary add-on to a graphics
                            package), but regardless, one of the first rules of good code is Make
                            it readable, Make it modifiable.
                            It might run like gold and still be bad code.

                            At 09:27 AM 7/2/2008, Mark Fredrickson <mark.m.fredrickson@ gmail.com> wrote:

                            >I call "bikeshed" on this discussion[1] . Code is gold: if you
                            can
                            >write something in Coldfusion, do so. If you can write it in
                            >something else, do so.
                            >
                            >Best of
                            luck,
                            >-M
                            >
                            >[1] <
                            href="http://www.bikeshed.com/">http://www.bikeshed .com/>http://www.bikeshed .com/ and
                            ><
                            href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Color_of_the_bikeshed">http://en.wikipedia .org/wiki/ Color_of_ the_bikeshed>http://en.wikipedia .org/wiki/ Color_of_ the_bikeshed
                            >
                            >On
                            Jul 2, 2008, at 9:19 AM, Derek Willis wrote:
                            >
                            >>Please, please,
                            not cold fusion. -1 (or as many as I can muster).
                            >>
                            >>On Wed,
                            Jul 2, 2008 at 10:14 AM, Pierre Demester
                            >><<mailto:pierre% 40in.ternet. us>
                            href="mailto:pierre%40in.ternet">pierre@...! .us> wrote:
                            >> > Coldfusion is similar to ASP (Microsoft) and PHP (open
                            >> source)... in that it
                            >> > is a scripting
                            language.
                            >> >
                            >> > PHP has Object Orientation (OO) -
                            whereas Coldfusion (CF) (developed
                            >> > (Jeremy) Allaire and Ben
                            Forta, then sold to Macromedia, bought by Adobe)
                            >> > resembles
                            HTML.

                            Neil
                            --
                            NeilRest@rcn. com

                            Plato had defined the human being as an animal, biped and
                            featherless, and was applauded. Diogenes plucked a fowl and brought
                            it into the lecture-room with the words, 'Here is Plato's human
                            being.' In consequence of which there was added to the definition,
                            'having broad nails'.

                          • Josh Tauberer
                            ... Okay, okay, let s not have this list turn into a discussion about programming languages. The priority should be finding a *civic project* to work on, not
                            Message 13 of 24 , Jul 2, 2008
                              Pierre Demester wrote:
                              > I'm a little confused
                              > - Coldfusion (proprietary add-on to a graphic package) ???

                              Okay, okay, let's not have this list turn into a discussion about
                              programming languages.

                              The priority should be finding a *civic project* to work on, not what
                              language to use for the project. Project first, language second.

                              Josh
                            • Gabe Hamilton
                              Hi Josh, I have some availability to work on GovTrack over the next few months. My interest is in state legislation, however I m happy to start with some of
                              Message 14 of 24 , Jul 3, 2008
                                Hi Josh,
                                    I have some availability to work on GovTrack over the next few months.  My interest is in state legislation, however I'm happy to start with some of the higher priority items.

                                My question is, would it make sense to start a govtrack-development group?  Obviously we don't want to debate programming languages, but there  are probably some architectural questions that will inspire just as much traffic.

                                Some examples of things that could be discussed in a new group:
                                  Since GovTrack is in .NET and Perl, is there a way for PHP/Python/Ada programmers to contribute?
                                  Should GovTrack use a DB as well as XML?
                                  Anyone know how X works?
                                  I get error Y when running piece Z of govtrack, anyone know why?

                                I think Yahoo Groups will do polls, do you want to create a poll for whether a development group is needed?

                                -Gabe


                                Gabe Hamilton



                                On Sun, Jun 29, 2008 at 8:50 AM, Josh Tauberer <tauberer@...> wrote:

                                Hi guys.

                                With the recent discussion about writing bills on a wiki, I know there
                                are people here with good technical skills! So I'm writing my periodical
                                pitch to get some help with GovTrack. If you want to earn some money
                                helping GovTrack, that might also be possible to arrange.

                                I've been expanding my list of project ideas here:
                                http://wiki.govtrack.us/index.php/Projects

                                Here are a few:
                                - Display on a bill page a list of sections of the U.S. Code that would
                                be modified, by looking for references in the bill text.
                                - Researching what the different types of votes are (like 'motion to
                                recommit with instructions') and adding explanatory text to the site.
                                - Tagging bills (crowd-sourcing)
                                - Make the website fully compliant with accessibility standards

                                Need I say that GovTrack is quite popular and your contributions will
                                benefit thousands of people each day? :)

                                --
                                - Josh Tauberer
                                - GovTrack.us

                                http://razor.occams.info

                                "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
                                falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
                                Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)


                              • Josh Tauberer
                                ... Hey, Gabe. Glad to hear you could help out. Don t flake out on me now. :) ... I think when the time comes we ll deal with it then. (Any lurkers that have
                                Message 15 of 24 , Jul 3, 2008
                                  Gabe Hamilton wrote:
                                  > Hi Josh,
                                  > I have some availability to work on GovTrack over the next few
                                  > months. My interest is in state legislation, however I'm happy to start
                                  > with some of the higher priority items.

                                  Hey, Gabe.

                                  Glad to hear you could help out. Don't flake out on me now. :)

                                  > My question is, would it make sense to start a govtrack-development
                                  > group? Obviously we don't want to debate programming languages, but
                                  > there are probably some architectural questions that will inspire just
                                  > as much traffic.

                                  I think when the time comes we'll deal with it then.

                                  (Any lurkers that have an opinion on what they'd like to receive on this
                                  list are welcome to email me off list with opinions.)

                                  Josh
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