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We’re back from the 2017 Legislative Data and Transparency Conference in Washington, DC, where technologists from the federal government and transparency organizations presented their latest open data work.

In the past year, several government websites have completed initiatives that make their data more accessible and more re-usable: from mobile-friendly redesigns from, and, to new repositories of bulk data for download, to initiatives that will support original drafting in formats suitable for publication. We were particularly excited to see LII’s work on the Legislative Data Model being adopted in government information systems, as well as FDsys metadata in RDF.

I spoke on a panel about data integration, along with my co-panelist, GovTrack founder Josh Tauberer, and our moderator, GPO’s Lisa LaPlant. Each of us is finding new ways to pick up a legal text, learn what we can about it, and connect it to other legal texts and, particularly in LII’s case, real-world objects.

This presentation was the latest installment in the ongoing work we’ve been doing to aggregate different data sources and connect them to one another, thus helping people navigate from what they know to what they don’t know and therefore making it easier for everyone to find and understand the law that affects them.

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