W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-egov-ig@w3.org > February 2010

Re: Ed and Outreadch Opportunity

From: Dave McAllister <dmcallis@adobe.com>
Date: Mon, 1 Feb 2010 14:46:00 -0800
To: "chris-beer@grapevine.net.au" <chris-beer@grapevine.net.au>, "rachel.flagg@gsa.gov" <rachel.flagg@gsa.gov>
CC: "Owen.Ambur@verizon.net" <Owen.Ambur@verizon.net>, "'eGovIG IG'" <public-egov-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <C78C99A8.3176%dmcallis@adobe.com>
I thought this information (from internal to Adobe) worth passing on:

ďIím not on that list, but hereís some info if youíd like to pass it on. Itís very specific to Adobe products, but then that is generally considered the easiest way to create XFA/XML-based PDF forms and documentsÖ

There are a couple of different resources for creating XML/XFA PDF documents like the StratML sample. The short answer is that you donít create them like a regular PDF, rather you start with an existing form and an XML schema Ė or just an XML schema and map the form fields to the schema elements using a tool like Adobe LiveCycle Designer - http://www.adobe.com/products/livecycle/designer/ - it comes with Acrobat Pro.

The resulting templates can be used either as data capture forms that collect data in XML or as templates for publishing XML-based output. Forms can be dynamic, like the StratML form or can be made to match precise page layouts. Beyond Designer itself, you can find the XFA reference here: http://partners.adobe.com/public/developer/xml/index_arch.html and the Designer documentation here: http://help.adobe.com/en_US/livecycle/9.0/designerHelp/index.htm. There are lots of tutorials here: http://www.acrobatusers.com/topics/forms-livecycle-designer and a web search will turn up many more.

And the StratML form sample [I created] can be re-used by anyone with LiveCycle Designer, so itís a great starting point since it already incorporates all of the bindings for the schema.Ē

There are other ways of approaching the problem as well, but I do admit to an Adobe bias.


On 2/1/10 4:22 AM, "Chris Beer" <chris-beer@grapevine.net.au> wrote:

Hey all

Well. It is with egg on my face, and a completely humbled demeanor, that I write this latest post. And next time I spout off without obviously knowing my stuff - please tell me. Be blunt :) "OMG Chris you are so full of crap" is quite acceptable.

@ Dave Mac, Joe and Owen - Thankyou. Seriously. I stand completely corrected on my previous attitudes to PDF, from its status as a standard, through to what you can do with it. Some fairly hefty reading has certainly made me do a fairly hefty backflip on a stance I have held for so long, it really was from the earliest proprietry days of PDF, and never seriously updated. In short, I have seen the light. Well - I've certainly seen the possibilities of PDF and what you can do with it. :) God bless my Department for including the full PDF authoring suites in my CS4 install - I've been really pushing it for the first time (rather than being a lazy PDF web publisher/author), and well, I'm impressed - that's for sure.

@ David P - change of mind - yes - I'd back standards on PDFs in the .gov.* sphere. And I'll be knocking up some myself for my Department and passing them around the .gov.au space for comment - would love to compare/collaborate when we have drafts.

@ Rachel and to where the discussion has progressed:

To begin - this is definately being made a part of TF 4 - Government Publications is a key Government Service, and one with a long history in the online space. A one stop, catch all, PDF how to, IG Note is certainly worthy of consideration for the group IMO. And I'm glad we have Owen/AIIM and Dave Mac here with us ;)

So - to a very large degree, I am one of those people. Or certainly I do have the power to shape the policy in my agencies publishing environment. So ok - how would I do it. Or rather, how will I do it...

"for some agencies, old habits die hard and there will probably be a push to publish at least some of these plans as glossy PDFs with pretty pictures........ so we need to make sure that content creators are creating these PDFs correctly
-  the solution must be explainable in non-techie language, to help agency web managers convince their bosses of the "right" way to do this, so plans are accessible (in all ways) to the public"

I think there are a couple of other points to keep in mind as well while we discuss this.

 *   Not every Agency will have access to the full Adobe suite of products for PDF production, if any. The solution must be explainable as platform independent and agency size (ie: personnel and ICT tech limitations in mind) independent - assume that agencies could be using everything from Adobe to Word to GoogleDocs to OpenOffice and everything in between. And that they may have a standardised architecture, or they may not. They may have a central publications office. They may not.
 *   Not every Agency, or indeed, employees tasked with production of a publication in an Agency, will have a) a Publishing or IT background and b) access to training (due to funds or otherwise) to learn PDF production indepth. Old habits will certainly die hard, and one click "save as PDF" will still be utilised by many. (Hint).

There seems to be no ONE place that offers "simple, step-by-step guidance for creating machine, human and assistive technology - readable PDF's." Certainly not with the points listed above and others we haven't thought of. The other issue I am seeing is the usual Trust and Provenance one. Most of the tutorials and how to guides aren't from a "reputable source" in that sense - standards orgs, W3C, etc. The tutorials that are, like the Adobe ones, focus on a particular product line for production, and so aren't generic enough. Or they are situation specific - not a step-by-step approach but rather a "how to do this one thing with a PDF". Many seem to follow the current trend of using video tutorials, which is also an issue when in the .gov.* space as many networks we work on limit access to videos etc.

Default settings in the creation of PDF files in the .gov.* space: The more I think about the whole .gov.* PDF creation process within this discusison, the more questions get raised. For instance - do we assume that the agency in question has a Document or Records Management system? No - but for those that do, it can be a step in the right direction if policy can be implemented around what options are turned on by default for PDF creation software, what metadata fields are included in each document (and are mandatory to be filled in) and so on. That said, either way, part of our how-to guide must focus on PDF creator settings - what is available, types of PDF files, and why simply hitting "save as PDF" is not a good thing when producing a document for the rest of the world to view and not just printing something off. Identifying and encouraging adoption of a "preferred" set of options for PDF creator software would also be a plus.

Accessibility: In Australia the standard line is that documents provided as PDF's can be made "accessible" if you provide an RTF version alongside it. I'm sure we're not the only ones who interpret WCAG in that way either. Since my discovery of the concept of PDF/UA (nod to Owen and AIIM) this suddenly not only seems redundant, but quite silly - with PDF/UA not only superseding the need for RTF, but in many cases, we could produce PDF files that in fact read better than any print version - the idea of spoken word PDF documents isn't a bad one :)

(As a side note - Australia has just undertaken a PDF Accessibility Review ( http://webpublishing.agimo.gov.au/PDF_Accessibility_Review ) no details of the final review or submissions have been released yet, but I will contact AGIMO (also a W3C member) tomorrow when I get to work to seek to get any information I can on it for the immediate discussion, and an idea of when the review will be published.)

Meta-data and machine-readability, document findability and preserving Government publications online: Identifying and encouraging the use of metadata schema's is obviously a must, as well as teaching others how to go about including this in a PDF document. Obviously including these fields (automated where possible) in a PDF "template" by default is a bonus for any agency. Part of the key to working with agencies and PDF files that I've found, is not to focus on "new technologies" such as LGD and the semantic web. These still confuse and irritate old-guard types - however one thing that every agency has in common world wide (for the most part), and one thing they do see the value in, is meeting thier legal requirements. Because they have to. And these requirements usually include Archiving and Preservation of Government publications. However most are still struggling, or are not used to, how to do this in the online space. This is where metadata schemas such as RDA (developed for Libraries and Archives, replacing the Marc21 Library of Congress standards used worldwide) can be put forward as a easy solution to meeting archiving and records management requirements - and hey - they just happen to make documents machine readable and linkable ;) That said though - I would still (and am) encourage my agency (and others) to include a two-tiered persistant URI solution in which an extra layer of abstraction (ie: a HTML page containing an abstract/catalogue information/ metadata obtained from the PDF file or the database it resides in) is presented prior to download. This would also assist in web crawling by external stakeholders and assist in managing versioning, perferred copies based on detection (eg: language or accessibility specific) and the inevitable expiry and archiving of the document (ie: by providing information about the PDF document, even though the document itself is no longer available, or a redirect to where it now resides). This is also a best practice that can be extended to any resource type, not just PDFs (another bonus to management, as its a generic solution to a few problems).

All of these comments are broad strokes on a canvas at this point, and probably a little scattered - they aren't necessarily non-techie friendly (we'll leave that for the final version?), nor are they complete. But they are where my mind is centered at work atm, so they'll do. I also accept that we're going to see style over substance winning out in a lot of cases with PDF, but I'm now of the mind that our approach, and that of the pretty glossy pictures brigade, are not mutually exclusive.

Very eager to hear what others are thinking around the whole issue. As luck? would have it, and as mentioned in a previous mail to the list, I am actually in the process of developing a document repository, with some 20-30,000 PDF files to go into it. All of them will need to be made machine readable, and accessible, and everything else we're discussing (including how-to guides - I have to write something along these very lines as a training package for business areas, librarians, and the external data migration company as well as proposing policy and governance around the future of online publications production and management, especially PDF's in the next 2 -6 weeks, if that.)



On 30/01/2010 9:57 AM, rachel.flagg@gsa.gov wrote:

 +1 to Owen's statement in a previous post".. let me assure you that I am going to be one ticked off taxpayer if .gov agencies continue to insist upon flaunting style over substance in publishing their strategic and performance plans (including their open gov plans)."

 +1 to Brian's comment below that, if there are better ways to create PDFs, then we need to tell people.

 So in the interest of transparent, participatory and collaborative government, my question to the group is this....

 If you were in charge of publishing government agency strategic/OpenGovt plans... how would you do it?

 Keep these points in mind:
  - for some agencies, old habits die hard and there will probably be a push to publish at least some of these plans as glossy PDFs with pretty pictures........ so we need to make sure that content creators are creating these PDFs correctly
 -  the solution must be explainable in non-techie language, to help agency web managers convince their bosses of the "right" way to do this, so plans are accessible (in all ways) to the public

 HOW can we do it better?
 Is there ONE place that offers simple, step-by-step guidance for creating machine-readable PDFs, that we point out to agencies and tell them to follow that model?

 I think we all agree that context, style and substance are all important - so how can we combine all those into one end product that meets all those needs?

 Government agencies are trying really hard to get this right - what tools can you recommend to help agencies deliver?


Rachel Flagg
Web Content Manager
 and Co-Chair, Federal Web Managers Council
Government Web Best Practices Team
Office of Citizen Services
U.S. General Services Administration
www.webcontent.gov <http://www.webcontent.gov>  - Better websites. Better government.

 "Owen Ambur" <Owen.Ambur@verizon.net> <mailto:Owen.Ambur@verizon.net>
 Sent by: public-egov-ig-request@w3.org 01/29/2010 02:22 PM


 "'eGovIG IG'" <public-egov-ig@w3.org> <mailto:public-egov-ig@w3.org>



 RE: Ed and Outreadch Opportunity

 Brian, with reference to my separate message and the text of your draft cited by Dave below, I would also point out that:

 a)      HTML is a presentation format and, thus, is about style rather than substance (meaning), and
 b)      RDF may be ďserializedĒ in XML:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Resource_Description_Framework#Serialization_formats <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Resource_Description_Framework#Serialization_formats>

 Besides XFDL, MSís XML Paper Specification (XPS) is another XML vocabulary dealing with style. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XML_Paper_Specification <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XML_Paper_Specification>

 Adobeís Mars Project is described as ďan XML-friendly representation of PDF documentsĒ:  http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/mars/ <http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/mars/>


 From: public-egov-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:public-egov-ig-request@w3.org] On Behalf Of Brian Gryth
Sent: Friday, January 29, 2010 4:51 PM
To: Dave McAllister; Owen Ambur
Cc: eGovIG IG
Subject: Re: Ed and Outreadch Opportunity


 I apologize for the error and it has been corrected.

 + 1 to Owen's statements.  That is why I would suggest that we need to focus on educating people on the best approach to creating PDFs.  If a PDF can be created with the necessary raw data, metadata, or what have you that makes the document more machine readable than we need to tell people.

On Fri, Jan 29, 2010 at 2:14 PM, Dave McAllister <dmcallis@adobe.com <mailto:dmcallis@adobe.com> > wrote:

Just for completeness (and since the group has heard this before.

One objection...

In this sentence, you lump a standard, PDF with two implementations/products.

The W3C, the Sunlight Foundation, and other open government advocates recommend that government's should use open standards based technologies, such as HTML, XML, or RDF, rather than proprietary formats, such as PDF, Microsoft Word or Excel, when publishing data.

PDF is not proprietary, it is an open International standard, ISO 32000, under TC171.

Adobe products such as Acrobat and Acrobat Reader are proprietary... And yes, if you choose to state Acrobat here, then Iíll live with it. But I worked really hard to separate PDF from Adobe specification to ISO standard.

Thanks for the insight into the letter.


On 1/29/10 1:10 PM, "Brian Gryth" <briangryth@gmail.com <http://briangryth@gmail.com/> > wrote:
 Hello all,

Thanks for the good discussion.  It has been helpful.  I have created a Google Doc to capture my thoughts.  It is a draft letter that I plan to send to member of the Colorado General Assembly concerning the school finance bill I identified.  The doc is viewable at https://docs.google.com/Doc?docid=0Aev3E7WkLorMZGhkcGhkYjlfOXpudzNkNWZ0&hl=en <https://docs.google.com/Doc?docid=0Aev3E7WkLorMZGhkcGhkYjlfOXpudzNkNWZ0&hl=en> (please let me know if you would like access to edit the doc.)

As to this discussion, I think that it can best be described as the PDF+ approach.  As Joe has frequently and correctly pointed out, PDF use is persistent and this will not change.  (Adobe has been very effective in making their product ubiquitous.)  Replacing PDF is going to be extremely difficult, if not impossible.  Therefore, we need to education the government community on the best practices for creating PDF documents or the best approach to augment PDF publication.

Again thank you for the information and please continue the discussion or help revise and improve the document I linked to above.


On Fri, Jan 29, 2010 at 8:29 AM, Joe Carmel <joe.carmel@comcast.net <http://joe.carmel@comcast.net/> > wrote:

PDF is probably the most flexible human-readable electronic format we humans have invented and provides one of the richest possible electronic formats ever devised in terms of capabilities (text, graphics, color, image, audio, video, forms, printability, digital signatures, metadata, file attachments, and archiving).  With no disrespect, it seems like the problem for many is that PDF is not readable and consumable with a text editor.  While this is true, there are several public domain and commercial tools that provide developers with access to PDF file contents (even converting page contents to XML).  Given these overwhelming benefits and the substantial use of the format on the human-side of the web, itís very unlikely that PDF is going away.  Even if everyone stopped using it, there would still be over 26 million PDF files (per Google) on the web from the .gov sites alone.  Since the PDF format allows metadata inclusion and file attachments, I think getting the word out about how these and other features add interoperability to PDF should encourage practices that lead to combining human and machine readability for all electronically published information.

HTM  30,800,000 http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Ahtm&aq=f&aqi=&oq= <http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Ahtm&aq=f&aqi=&oq=>
HTML27,700,000 http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Ahtml&aq=f&aqi=&oq= <http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Ahtml&aq=f&aqi=&oq=>
PDF    26,100,000  http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&source=hp&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Apdf&aq=f&aqi=&oq= <http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&source=hp&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Apdf&aq=f&aqi=&oq=>
ASP    13,100,000 http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Aasp&aq=f&aqi=&oq= <http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Aasp&aq=f&aqi=&oq=>
TXT     2,980,000 http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Atxt&aq=f&aqi=&oq= <http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Atxt&aq=f&aqi=&oq=>
DOC    2,310,000 http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Adoc&aq=f&aqi=&oq= <http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Adoc&aq=f&aqi=&oq=>
XLS     1,880,000 http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Axls&aq=f&aqi=&oq= <http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Axls&aq=f&aqi=&oq=>
XML    1,010,000 http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Axml&aq=f&aqi=&oq= <http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Axml&aq=f&aqi=&oq=>
RDF             3,240 http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Ardf&aq=f&aqi=&oq= <http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=site%3A.gov+filetype%3Ardf&aq=f&aqi=&oq=>

Also, see http://legislink.wikispaces.com/message/view/home/14870950 <http://legislink.wikispaces.com/message/view/home/14870950> for more tech info.


From: David Pullinger [mailto:David.Pullinger@coi.gsi.gov.uk <mailto:David.Pullinger@coi.gsi.gov.uk> ]
Sent: Friday, January 29, 2010 9:27 AM
To: chris-beer@grapevine.net.au <http://chris-beer@grapevine.net.au/>
Cc: Kevin' 'Novak; Joe Carmel; 'Brian Gryth'; 'eGovIG IG'
Subject: Re: Ed and Outreadch Opportunity


Let me assure you that I'm not in favour of PDF for data or communication, the critical words were ...'those who insist on..'   Let me draw a comparison.  The government is not in favour of people taking drugs.  But we provide information to help those who do.  Our friends at Adobe should not draw the analogy too far as I just mean that sometimes we engage in harm reduction - in this case to get at good re-usable data.


David Pullinger

david.pullinger@coi.gsi.gov.uk <http://david.pullinger@coi.gsi.gov.uk/>

Head of Digital Policy

Central Office of Information

Hercules House

7 Hercules Road

London SE1 7DU

020 7261 8513

07788 872321

 Twitter #digigov and blogs:  www.coi.gov.uk/blogs/digigov <http://www.coi.gov.uk/blogs/digigov> <http://www.coi.gov.uk/blogs/digigov <http://www.coi.gov.uk/blogs/digigov> >

>>> Chris Beer <chris-beer@grapevine.net.au <http://chris-beer@grapevine.net.au/> > 28/01/2010 12:05 >>>
Hey Brian, everyone

Wouldn't be right if I didn't pop the TF4 hat on and respond into the conversation ;) I already sent Brian an email offering to assist, but since we're doing this in list... :)

Personally and professionally,  I have issues with "data", if not any government information, being published in PDF formats as well as how PDF files are used in general, not only by Gov, but by the Private sector as well.

IMO The only three reasons (and only if you had to) to use PDF is a) as an archive snapshot of a document and b) for document control - that is - when you don't want a document to be altered by users such as in the case of a manifestation or publication of a piece of legislation, tenders etc - hence why you can embed digital signatures, lock them from editing, etc etc. and c) With accessible Smart Forms, which are actually just such a cool idea and so very useful as an assistive technology, and for both the user, and the owner - that said these all still have issues around being in PDF.

The general usage, however, seems to be for anything and everything that can be published. Want a printable version? Download the PDF file.

Rather than focus on the pitfalls of using PDF's in the .gov.* space (which I'm more than happy to discuss with anyone - especially David in light of his comments ;) ), I'll focus on the topic at hand. I've had a look at the Fiscal Note Brian provided as well as the proposed Act and I'm a little stunned by the leap of logic in this sense.

A careful reading of the Bill reveals that throughout, information is required to be "posted on-line, in a downloadable format". Now if I was a clever Web Manager in charge of implementing my local schools requirements under this bill, I could quickly and easily meet these requirements through a CMS enabled website/database - the act of viewing a webpage is, by definition, downloading information. Not only that, but I could point at my model and highlight the fact that:

a) The data supports RDF(a), XML, StratML etc in a far more useful and usable format than a PDF version

b) I can send my schemas to other schools, or even the Department (who might want to create a centralised model) to enable consistancy of data formatting, not just a pretty view of the data

c) I can deliver my data in a range of open standard formats, from such as binary, CSV, HTML, XML, etc using very basic, free, vendor independant and accessible technologies

d) I can export a customisable view of this data on demand as a PDF file if needed... (think the export as PDF function of Google Analytics dashboard reports.) But I can also export it in a variety of other propriety formats on demand.

e) I can very easily track the usage and access of this data by the public through web analytics. If I track it well enough, and agressively enough, I can start to analyse which parts of the data are the most useful (for instance I might well find that visits from .edu domains (ie: teachers) show a marked interest in salary schedule comparisons) and I can tailor the solution from a push Web 1.0 model to a information on demand Web 2.0 model.)

f) I can allow others, including other arms of Local, State and Federal Governments, through API's and mashups, to mix my data with other data to provide interesting information - like financial data mapped against student result averages.

A couple of other things to consider with the financial and workload aspects in mind, is that technically (and correct me if I am wrong) each and every PDF release of this data would be classed as a government publication and will require not only ISBN numbers etc, but entry into the Library of Congress or State equivalent, catalogues as well. A single website, being considered as an Intergrated Resource, technically would require only a single catalogue entry...

The Fiscal Note also reads "It is assumed that financial documents can be electronically converted into a portable document format (PDF) or image file (tiff, gif, jpg), and posted online at minimal cost, and that software to convert documents and software to modify websites is readily available at the district level."

Now thats an interesting assumption - and it is just that - an assumption. Considering publishing the information as HTML etc is effectively free.

These are only some initial thoughts, but you get the idea. Happy to discuss.

David - would love to discuss your thoughts around the standards and governance on PDF, but it'd probably off topic in this thread. Drop me a line and expand on things :)



David Pullinger wrote:


As well as separate data files, it is perfectedly possible to embed RDF(a) into PDF files, as other markup, and so provide access to Linked Data thereby...

We're considering whether or not to issue standards in this area so that those who insist on releasing information in PDF files nevertheless don't put a block on Linked Data.


David Pullinger

david.pullinger@coi.gsi.gov.uk <http://david.pullinger@coi.gsi.gov.uk/>

Head of Digital Policy

Central Office of Information

Hercules House

7 Hercules Road

London SE1 7DU

020 7261 8513

07788 872321

 Twitter #digigov and blogs:  www.coi.gov.uk/blogs/digigov <http://www.coi.gov.uk/blogs/digigov> <http://www.coi.gov.uk/blogs/digigov <http://www.coi.gov.uk/blogs/digigov> >

>>> "Joe Carmel" <joe.carmel@comcast.net <http://joe.carmel@comcast.net/> > <mailto:joe.carmel@comcast.net <mailto:joe.carmel@comcast.net> >  26/01/2010 18:56 >>>
One option to consider might be XForms (and XSLTForms in particular).  Although Iím not familiar with the school district financial data, it seems like publishing an XForm on a central website and mandating that school districts fill it out would be easy to create, maintain, and implement.  The output files could then be posted centrally and/or locally.
Iím working with Owen Ambur and several others on something like this for StratML.  Check out http://www.xmldatasets.net/XF2/stratmlxform3.xml <http://www.xmldatasets.net/XF2/stratmlxform3.xml> .   Itís still being developed but it might serve as an example.  The idea is to provide a way to create, import, update, display, and finally catalog StratML fles across the web.

From: public-egov-ig-request@w3.org <http://public-egov-ig-request@w3.org/> [mailto:public-egov-ig-request@w3.org <mailto:public-egov-ig-request@w3.org> ] On Behalf Of Novak, Kevin
Sent: Tuesday, January 26, 2010 12:13 PM
To: Brian Gryth; eGovIG IG
Subject: RE: Ed and Outreadch Opportunity
I am here to help you.
I can provide input and opinion on the piece you are developing. I concur with your assessment of PDF. Other options in addition must be considered.
From: public-egov-ig-request@w3.org <http://public-egov-ig-request@w3.org/> [mailto:public-egov-ig-request@w3.org <mailto:public-egov-ig-request@w3.org> ] On Behalf Of Brian Gryth
Sent: Tuesday, January 26, 2010 12:08 PM
To: eGovIG IG
Subject: Ed and Outreadch Opportunity

Good day all,

Members of the Colorado General Assembly introduced legislation recently that would mandate school districts to publish certain financial data in a down loadable format.  The bill is HB10-1036 and is available at http://legislink.org/us-co?HB10-1036 <http://legislink.org/us-co?HB10-1036> .  This is a good thing on the surface.  What concerns me is the fiscal impact statement associated with the legislation.  The concerning part of the fiscal impact statement focuses on the information being released in PDF or in an image format (e.g. JPEG, TIFF, GIF), but does not talk about other formats.  The fiscal note is available at http://bit.ly/80RBiu <http://bit.ly/80RBiu> .  As has been discussed by this group and in other places, PDF only publication is not the best method of publishing government data.

Therefore, I saw this as a perfect opportunity for some education and outreach.  I am planning on putting some summarized information together that will discuss data publication methods to sent to the bill sponsors and other members of the Colorado legislature.  I also plan on speaking at the Senate hearing for the bill as a concerned citizen.

I would appreciate the assistance of anyone wishing to help me out.  Please feel free to e-mail me and I will share a Google Doc I will be using to draft the materials.


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Received on Monday, 1 February 2010 22:47:03 UTC

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