The DC Code Reunion Hackathon was held May 10, 2014, at Mapbox Garage in Washington, DC, USA.
Here is a description of the event, from the registration page:
In 2013, @tmcw organized a killer hackathon for the DC Code. At the hackathon, a new DC Code browser was built and a new era in open legal data in DC was born. A year later, much has happened, but more needs to be done.
To see what’s been done: http://dccode.org/
For a hackpad of projects: https://hackpad.com/DC-Code-Reunion-Hackathon-Hackpad-3dHbJ5sX88f […]
The results of the hackathon include:
- “major progress on citation theunitedstates.io/citation/” (HT @vdavez)
- “a drag-and-drop interface for an authentication tool” (HT @vdavez)
- “the beginnings of a cool legal geo-time project” (HT @vdavez)
- “some cleaning of the tables in the DC Code” (HT @vdavez)
- “some improvements to the rendered version of the code” (HT @vdavez)
- “the conversion of the DC Home Rule Act into XML parallel to the DC Code” (HT @vdavez)
- Elaine Ayo’s data visualization of revisions to the DC Code (HT @internetrebecca)
- Lou Huang’s text comparison (diff) application, displaying changes to the text of the DC Code (HT @vdavez)
One of the Twitter hashtags for the event is #legalhack
Here are excerpts from the post:
The original dccode viewer is unofficial for several reasons: it’s not hosted by the DC Government, it doesn’t follow government accessibility regulations, and it isn’t authenticated. Authentication is a process in which the government tries to guarantee that the law you’re reading hasn’t been tampered with. […]
What is built so far is the skeleton of a Django app that will aim to be a sort of key server, called authentication. […]
Laws […] refer to themselves all the time, via citations […]. Extracting these is a neat and hard problem, but key to fulfilling the central coolness of the internet: hyperlinks.
What is built so far is a node module called citation that pulls in modules of regular expressions that support specific citation styles. […]
The drafting process for any official document is usually the same or worse than your office […]. Creating an editor where revisions to the law could stay online would make the process better for everyone and reduce the friction for lawmakers to draft laws with public input.
What is built so far is a node app that provides an editing interface built with CodeMirror. […]
Standardizing a representation of anything is hard. Two well-known drafts exist: Akoma Ntoso and United States Legislative Markup. But there’s still a long way to go to find the right balance between terse and explanatory markup, between developer ease and producer consistency.