Last week, we quashed a bug that was overly aggressively logging users out, so you should now be able to use the site with fewer interruptions.
For previous site improvements, check out all of MuckRock’s release notes, and if you’d like to get a list of site improvements every Tuesday - along with ways to help contribute to the site’s development yourself - subscribe to our developer newsletter here.
A few users had mentioned that they were getting logged out more regularly of their MuckRock accounts. We dug into what was going on, and found a few potential issues. We’ve now fixed one of them. Essentially, the site was automatically logging users our when they closed the browser. We’ve updated that setting so that it will remember you until you log out.
Come hack on MuckRock
If you’re the kind of person who gets excited about building cool, impactful open source software, you might also be interested in our Tuesday meetups in Cambridge, Massachusetts or our other open source efforts.
Right now, we’re working on a website that scans government websites to check on how well they’re doing on a number of important factors, ranging from mobile friendliness and accessibility to ease of contacting them.
Checking into the details of agency websites can be incredibly valuable. For example, recent ProPublica sleuthing of Intuit’s website turned up the fact that the company was deliberately hiding its free-to-file program from search engines. We’re interested in doing similar investigations at scale by parsing as many government websites as possible.
Check out the source code for this project here, and then join us Tuesday.
There are also a number of ways to help us continue to improve the core MuckRock site experience. We have a project and a weekly newsletter, “Release Notes,” that highlights everything we’re working on. Register to get a summary of site updates each week and details on open issues you can help with.
Subscribers to the weekly newsletter get exclusive data sets, FOIA-related scripts, and other transparency hacker tidbits exclusively for subscribers. You can subscribe to the newsletter at the top or bottom of this page.
If you spot a bug or have a feature request, you can also help by opening an issue on GitHub.
If you do, 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.
In addition to the new newsletter, we have a developer channel on the MuckRock Slack.
Image via Wikimedia Commons