MuckRock Release Notes: Something big is coming

MuckRock Release Notes: Something big is coming

Join us at Code for Boston for a preview of our latest new features

Edited by JPat Brown

Last week we were heads down on wrapping up the secret project, so no new user-facing features were pushed out, but big ones are coming soon! In the meantime, here’s how you can get a preview of what’s coming and how you can help make MuckRock better for everyone.

For previous site improvements, check out all of MuckRock’s release notes.

Calling all PDFs with locked away data

Just like we mentioned earlier this month, we’re still looking for people with big sets of PDFs that would be useful to crowdsource getting information out of. We have some cool partnerships already lined up, but we’re always looking for more good use cases.

Here’s what we’re looking for:

  • Documents that you’re ok with making public.
  • Questions you have that can be explained relatively easily and done by someone who is motivated but not an expert. A good question is “Does this document restrict when stun guns can be used?” A question that’s too complex is “Does this budget contain any irregularities?”

If you’ve got something that might be a good fit, get in touch. No cost to you, and hopefully we can help you dig up some useful data.

Come help build a better MuckRock

MuckRock and FOIA Machine are open source. That means anyone can freely inspect, modify, and reuse our code, and it also means you can help us continue to improve the sites (they’re actually built on the same codebase!). Open issues are all listed on GitHub. If you find a bug you can email us directly or open an issue. If you do the latter, please search open issues first to make sure it hasn’t already been reported. If it has been reported previously, please leave an additional comment letting us know it’s an issue for you, particularly if you can provide more details about when it crops up or what you think is causing the problem.

For those who want to contribute design, code, or otherwise more directly to the site, we have a developer channel on the MuckRock Slack.

We’re also part of Code for Boston’s weekly hack nights, which take place Tuesday evenings in Kendall Square. We might not make it to every one of them, so if you want to meet up there it’s a good idea to check in on Slack first. We will be at tomorrow’s event, giving a sneak peek of our latest work.

Image via Wikimedia Commons