As of today we're proud to announce a new milestone for the project, version 1 of the Open State Project API. You can start using our API today to get access to information on more than 37,000 bills and 1,600 legislators from the most recent sessions of 10 state legislatures.Continue reading
This post was contributed by one of Sunlight Labs' Google Summer of Code Students, Gabriel Joel Pérez. Gabriel's work is currently being integrated into the core project and the states he has been working on should be available via the Open State Project API later this year. His code is available on github as we work on integration.
Hello! I’m Gabriel, I’m a 4th year student of Computer Engineering from the University of Puerto Rico in Mayagüez. This summer I worked as a GSoC student on developing new scapers for the Open State Project. The states I worked on were Colorado, Hawaii, Washington, Oregon and the territory of Puerto Rico. I really enjoyed the whole experience. The work is very fulfilling as coding in Python is always delightful and fun.Continue reading
The Fifty State Project is now over a year old and has evolved from a Sunlight Labs side project to a funded endeavor. With this renewed focus on the project we're taking a look at some of the problems we've faced to see how we (and the community) can better tackle them.Continue reading
Google has announced the participants for this year's Google Summer of Code, and we're proud to have four excellent students out of a great overall batch of applications.
We'll be posting updates here over the course of the summer on how the projects progress. Even though our students don't wrap up their classes for another few weeks and so the real work won't begin until May we figured we'd go ahead and introduce our four new students and their projects to the community.Continue reading
2009 Year in Review
On December 19th, 2008 we launched a new site with a new mission-- to build a community of developers around making government more accountable. On that day, we proclaimed our new mission:
Sunlight Labs is an open source development team dedicated to making their government accountable. And we want you to be a part of it.
People have been organizing to change government forever-- and people like John McCain in 2000, Howard Dean in 2004, and Barack Obama and Ron Paul have been raising the bar of organizing by using the Internet to move votes and raise money. Developers have been organizing to make great software, too. Projects like Mozilla and Apache have been helping developers organize to make great software for years.
Sunlight Labs is an experiment to try and blend those two things and see what happens. About a year ago, we asked the question: Can developers be organized to change their government?
Here's the data-- you be the judge:Continue reading
On the second weekend of December, Sunlight Labs held the Great American Hackathon— a nation-wide get-together of developers interested in opening up government. I’m long overdue in my wrap-up, but the end result was a success. Events popped up across the country— about 20 in all. Average attendance, from the look of it, was about 10 developers per event. Here at Sunlight, we had about 30 people show up in all, and we managed to work on several projects. Here’s some of the highlights:Continue reading
Early this year we began our Fifty State Project, a project to scrape and organize data from all fifty state legislative websites. We have also started to run into cases where despite the best efforts of the developers on the project we can't get the full range of information we need to make this legislative data useful.
We have just posted a new TransparencyCorps task to help digitize this information, starting with the results from the Kentucky Legislature.Continue reading
Yesterday Google announced this years participants in
Google Summer of Code <http://socghop.appspot.com/>_, Google's program that pays students a stipend to work on an open source project during their summer.
This is Sunlight Labs' first year participating and we were extremely grateful to be granted three slots for this summer. Interest definitely exceeded our expectations leaving us with the difficult job of going through a lot of excellent proposals to select our top three applicants. We wish we could have accepted more proposals and hope that some of the students that found out about us through this program will pursue their ideas even though we were not able to accept them at this time.Continue reading
Six weeks ago we
announced on this blog <http://www.sunlightlabs.com/blog/2009/02/26/fifty-state-project/>_ the
Fifty State Project <http://wiki.sunlightlabs.com/index.php/Fifty_State_Project>_, our ambitious project to begin building scrapers and storing data for all legislative information from all fifty states. At the time this project seemed like a longshot, but almost immediately a community rose to the challenge and there are now more than a dozen contributors and more than thirty states in progress.
Today was an amazing day for Sunlight Labs. Check this out:
That's our code sprint in PyCon today. Developers have, according to the wiki, checked out over 20 states to work on, and it looks like amazing, serious progress is being made there.
So to the Pycon and greater Python community-- thank you for all that you do. You are amazing.Continue reading