The Senate killed a bill to put their own voting records online. So I did it for them.

The Senate Rules Committee killed a bill today that would have put legislators’ voting records online. The House passed freshman Republican Jim LeMunyon’s HB778 overwhelmingly. But the Senate Rules Committee—overwhelmingly Democratic, incidentally—barely allowed it out of subcommittee, and then killed it on a 13-2 vote. Officially, they think it’d just be too darned hard to …

Sen. Hurt is, in fact, the most partisan member of the senate.

I just finished adding a new feature to Richmond Sunlight—the ability to sort through legislators by a variety of attributes like location, race, sex, year they started in office, etc.—and when I was done, I found a bug. For some reason, my code was listing Sen. Robert Hurt as the most partisan Republican in the …

Steve Shannon’s special IP addresses.

Steve Shannon ran this ad in the last month of his campaign: If those IP addresses are an indicator of Steve Shannon’s technical prowess, I don’t think he was going to catch those child pornographers after all. Here’s a screenshot, if you missed it: This is a bit like tracking Virginia criminals by their phone …

Campaign result apps blooming.

As I watch the first of the results of the election come in, I’m struck by the wide variety of options of websites offering data. Until this election, we’ve been left obsessively reloading the SBE’s website, hopping around from precinct to precinct, district to district, trying to remember what the numbers were when last we …

Virginia’s SSN protection doesn’t particularly protect them.

Last week a new law went into effect that exempts the first five digits of social security numbers from FOIA requests. Which strikes me as a good thing. It’s a result of Del. Joe May’s HB2427. But, unfortunately, it looks like that’s not actually helpful. Why? The structure of the SSN makes the first five …

Chris Anderson’s Free contains what is apparently plagiarized text.

Over on VQR I wrote: In the course of reading Chris Anderson’s new book, Free: The Future of a Radical Price (Hyperion, $26.99), for a review in an upcoming issue of VQR, we have discovered almost a dozen passages that are reproduced nearly verbatim from uncredited sources. These instances were identified after a cursory investigation, …