TheyWorkForYou news
December 2006

11 December 2006

The Northern Ireland Assembly

I'm extremely proud to announce that TheyWorkForYou now covers the debates of the Northern Ireland Assembly from its creation in 1998 to its current Transitional Assembly status. Everything should integrate with the rest of the site, so MLAs who are also MPs only have the one central page, such as Gerry Adams or Ian Paisley.

I've done this voluntarily, in secret — this announcement comes as much as a surprise to everyone else involved with TheyWorkForYou as it does to you — partly to try out Beautiful Soup, partly because I obviously didn't have enough to do writing a No10 Petitions website and answering mountains of support mail, partly as an early Christmas present for everyone I know in the world of the internets (hey guys), and partly to show how easy I think it is and that there's no excuse for people not to volunteer to do the Scottish Parliament and Welsh Assembly. :) Here's all the code (and there's not much; the scraper is 28 lines long, the name resolver 273, and the parser only 343 — including comments!) for scraping and parsing the Northern Ireland Assembly, the XML list of Assembly Members I created was quite important, and then it was a matter of adapting the existing TheyWorkForYou code to add a new major type (and completely rewrite the enter/leaving code as that assumed you couldn't be in more than one Parliament/Assembly at once...).

I'm sure there are bugs around the place (do let us know), but I'm off on holiday for a week now; I look forward to my return (so don't expect a quick reply to suggestions or complaints)! :-)

Matthew Somerville

Posted at 00:00:00 by Matthew | Link to this