[OpenSpending] Need Visualization + Conversation

Adam Stiles adam.d.stiles at gmail.com
Tue Mar 5 18:29:42 UTC 2013


I am part of group in Oakland, CA, USA, called Open Budget -- we've been
testing OpenSpending for possible use here to visualize our city budget. We
are very close to making a final decision on what we will use.

We like OpenSpending for many reasons, but one key criteria for our project
-- creating a platform for citizens to *discuss* what they see *at each
level* of spending -- is making it a challenge. We imagine that, *as one
drills down* into the data, a new page (or more importantly, *a new set of
comments*) is loaded so people can discuss that particular level of

My question is this: what is the best way to use OpenSpending visualizations
* in combination with a commenting system*, such as Disqus or something
else, to achieve what I describe above? I now see -- offenerhaushalt.at --
could using the complete OpenSpending interface allow a more seamless
integration with conversation tools? How does one go about that?

Any suggestions welcome. And let me know if there is anyone with whom I can
discuss/email directly.



On Mon, Mar 4, 2013 at 4:00 AM,  <openspending-request at lists.okfn.org>
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> Today's Topics:
>    1. Re: openspending.at - how to display data tables?
>       (Tryggvi Bj?rgvinsson)
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Message: 1
> Date: Mon, 04 Mar 2013 10:26:38 +0000
> From: Tryggvi Bj?rgvinsson <tryggvi.bjorgvinsson at okfn.org>
> Subject: Re: [OpenSpending] openspending.at - how to display data
>         tables?
> To: openspending at lists.okfn.org
> Message-ID: <513476DE.7000907 at okfn.org>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=UTF-8
> Hi,
> Vitor's reply explained how things are usually done (which I think is a
> pretty good approach - let openspending.org manage the analytical part
> and create site that don't require as much processing power).
> However, you might have thought long and carefully about installing your
> own version at offenerhaushalt.at and decided it would be best for you.
> If that's the case, the following is really interesting to me:
> On Thu 28.feb 2013 12:56, Krabina Bernhard wrote:
>> Furthermore we want to fund some development on the software. Parts of
it will be usable on the internatonal site as well (e. g.
Visualisation/Tables per capita). Other parts will make no sense in an
international platform: e. g. we calculate indicators based on the
municipal budgets. And budgeting in Austria is quite different from other
countries (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Single-entry_bookkeeping_system)
> In my opinion we should collaborate closely when you start your
> development, especially on the bits that are usable on the international
> site. I'm also not certain that the parts you think make no sense for
> the international platform are that irrelevant. I think it would come
> down to how things are implemented.
> I would recommend we try as hard as we can to incorporate things into
> the (international) openspending platform. This is a rather big piece of
> software and creating new development branches (forking the code)
> usually create more problems than they solve (for example, applying
> security fixes to one might be difficult for the other). With open
> source software forking is usually one of the last things developers
> want to do (because of the problems it brings).
> We should continue this discussion on the openspending-dev list. Are you
> on that list? If not you can subscribe here:
> http://lists.okfn.org/mailman/listinfo/openspending-dev
> /Tryggvi
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Adam Stiles
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