Archive for June 2009
I’m pleased to report that last week we received our first funding commitment – from OPSI – sufficient to proceed in earnest with the first phase of development of the FreeLegalWeb Pilot Project.
At the core of FLW will be what we call the Citator – essentially linked data tables identifying and connecting everything we know about the law: both primary resources such as legislation, cases and other official documents, and secondary law resources such as publications and articles. Using the Citator we will be able to request data both internally from FLW and externally from the web via an API which will be made publicly available so that any external website can leverage that information.
In the UK OPSI is the key facilitator of public sector information policy, setting standards and providing a practical framework of best practice for opening up and encouraging the use of PSI. It also has direct responsibility for the publication (inter alia) of legislation and is advanced in its development of a new legislation website which will provide an API enabling direct addressing of legislation data and resources. Via the Citator FLW will both exploit the facilities the new legislation website offers and also help contribute to OPSI’s PSI policy agenda. On this basis OPSI is part-financing the development of the Citator.
A big thanks to John Sheridan at OPSI who has been a leading FLW supporter from the outset. Indeed it was he who first encouraged me to go public with the initiative last autumn.
We have some way to go in securing sufficient funds to commit to development of the full Pilot Project but are nevertheless proceeding with other aspects of development in the expectation that some of our other current funding prospects will come good.