Thank you, and thank you to nten for setting up this ignite.
The first thing I want to say is hi. My background is math and data analysis. But I’m very interested in a few different social issues. Equality in all it’s forms, of course, and literacy. I also think the rise of the world wide web and more recently social media offers a lot of hope for improving the level of general participation in our government. There are lots of smart people out there, who have good ideas for solving our problems. If we can effectively tap into the wide and deep and varied talents of all of us, we’ll surely be better off. So I decided to tackle open government. But until recently everything I knew about our political process I pretty much learned from this guy.
Maybe that’s true for you too. Or maybe you know a lot about it. It turns out, I’ve come to learn, the whole thing is very complicated, one might even say arcane. In fact a great organization called the Sunlight Foundation held a contest last year, taking the most recent handbook published by congress describing the legislative process (weighing in at 174 pages). Sunlight challenged people to create a graphical representation of that document, of how a bill becomes a law.