DEVELOPERS GATHERED over the weekend in San Francisco to compete in a 24-hour hackathon in an effort to build apps that benefit the community and help government agencies embrace transparency.
Of the completed and nearly completed products from the event, one team developed an app prototype that would send out legislative alerts via text message.
The idea is that after a user signs up for legislative alerts, they would receive notifications when new legislation or an agenda item is introduced. The user would choose keywords he or she would like information on so updates could be more specific.
For instance, if a user is interested in information on liquor licenses or development projects in a specific neighborhood, the user would subscribe to receive alerts about those topics. If a new liquor license or development project was about to be approved in a given area, the user would receive a text message update.
While there are services that notify citizens of state legislation, we know of no application that notifies local residents of matters being considered by county supervisors or city councils.
The legislative alert app is a concept for the moment but developers might take it to the next step.