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Congress: A Quick and Intuitive Means to Stay Informed.

Discussion in 'Android Apps & Games' started by Veregund, Jun 7, 2010.

  1. Veregund

    Veregund Newbie
    Thread Starter
    Dec 17, 2009

    Dec 17, 2009
    Essential to every citizen's well-being is the obligation to stay informed on today's political landscape. With a heavy recession weighing down on every American's daily life, along with the ever-persistent threats from abroad, keeping oneself "in-the-know" with regard to Washington’s endeavors is vital to our personal (and collective) safety and financial security. With biased media outlets, whether via television, newspaper, or internet, we need a source of political information that contains just the facts.

    “Congress,” by SunLight Labs, performs this very function in a style that is simple in its intuitiveness yet complete in its assortment of information. Instead of sifting through the clutter of Google, the user can access the legislative information desired with a few simple taps. “Congress” allows the user to find a bill through a number of routes, including bills recently passed into law, bills recently introduced, bills that have just underwent a vote, or simply by searching the bill code. Moreover, once a particular bill is selected, you instantly gain access to a summary of the bill, its primary sponsor (along with a nifty picture), its voting history, and key dates with regard to its status.

    Holding representatives accountable to their particular constituents is also a function of “Congress.” If the user wishes to view the legislative actions of his or her own representative (or a representative of personal interest), there is the option to view the track-record of a single legislator by last name, state or zip code. In addition, you can view news related to a given representative, as well as YouTube videos or Twitter accounts, if applicable. If you feel the urge to call your congressman or visit their website, such options are directly available as well. Very useful.

    The app’s color scheme, layout, and general interface are simple, direct, and to the point. There is no nonsense to sift through in order reach the desired information about Washington’s undertakings, and even the “technological layman” can now hold Washington accountable.

    All-in-all, I have yet to see a political source that is quite as efficient and accessible as “Congress.” It’s a one-stop source for legislative information, and it saves a heap of time that would be wasted searching the internet. I give SunLight Labs’ “Congress” a 9/10. It allows the American citizen to perform his or her political obligation with little hassle and to gain insight into the legislative process. Although this is an application with “just the facts,” it would be interesting and helpful to include some outlets to news sources or op-eds that cover relevant information related to the particular bill(s) in question. Reading the bill (or bill’s summary) is one thing, understanding the main concerns is another. I recommend this application for anyone interested in politics or those who wish to track their particular congressman.


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