OpenCongress

February 28, 2007

OpenCongress is a great RubyonRails app which scrapes various web sources to bring you detailed information on what your representatives are up to.
From their description:

OpenCongress brings together official government information with news and blog coverage to give you the real story behind what’s happening in Congress.

For most people, finding out what’s really happening in Congress is a daunting and time-consuming task. The legislative process is frequently arcane and closed-off from the public, resulting in frustration with Congress and apathy about politics.

Small groups of political insiders and lobbyists know what’s really going on in Congress, but this important information rarely makes its way into the light. The official website of the library of Congress, Thomas, publishes the full text of bills, but we can do much more to inform ourselves and make our government accessible. Now, with OpenCongress, everyone can be an insider.

OpenCongress is a free, open-source, non-profit, and non-partisan web resource with a mission to help make Congress more transparent and to encourage civic engagement. OpenCongress is a joint project of the Sunlight Foundation and the Participatory Politics Foundation.

They have a how-to-use-document.
You can participate at their Trac.

Still have to have a look at their sponsors: the Participatory Politics Foundation, and the Sunlight Foundation.

(It seems the first is the group that planned OC, and the latter finally gave them the $$$ to do it. And OC seems to be a cousin of DemocracyPlayer.)

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