Thursday, October 02, 2008

Cost of minutes on website is nonsense

Anybody read today's Herald article about the Town having to post minutes to the Town website?

From the article:

There are also some unanswered questions that (staff) hopes to have resolved, such as how long minutes have to stay on the Web site. If the minutes have to stay online for an indefinite period of time, additional storage space on the town's servers might be required, which could be a costly endeavor. (by Josh Morgan)

Finding those comments implausible, I asked you about the costs related to these supposed space constraints yesterday and I got the answer I expected.

It's a bunch of hogwash... nothing more than the usual smoke'
n'mirrors intended to maintain control of the information, while being marginally defensible as a "best effort" at disseminating information... I love it when I hear the ol' "We won a freedom of information award this year!"

Really? And the criteria for that FOI award are based on what law from what year?

While I don't like unfunded state mandates... frankly, I don't have a major problem with this. After all, I tried to do this a year ago... only to have my efforts at enhancing transparency thwarted by the Council majority:

Tim White


Anonymous said...

How hard is it to put the minutes up?
Minutes are taken for every meeting. I would think they are put into a word document or a similar format.
It's not like they have to type them up specially for the web site.
I am sure the union will get involved and try to get more money for a task that is alredy done. All you need to do is cut and paste it onto the web site. Maybe they can hire a high school kid to do it.

Anonymous said...

Most the doc and pdf files for the minutes are under 100kb. Let's assume that they are way bigger. In fact, we'll assume that all of the documents are 1024kb, or 1mb.

Let's assume then that the clerk's office is churning out a thousand documents a month. Wow!

Well, that's about 1gb. If they kept up that crazy rate for a year we would have 12 gigs! Let's round that up to 20.

It would take five years to fill 100gb worth of space while churning out one thousand 1mb documents. Since most of the minutes are less than one tenth that size, it might actually take five years to do that.

Now, last month I bought an overpriced $120 500mb hard drive. If I were to donate that to the town, they could fill it up with minutes. Of course, it would take them between 25 and 250 years, with 250 looking far more likely.

That being said, adding hard drives to a real web server can be a BIT more expensive, but it's still not much and it's just nonsense to complain about space when storing pdf or word documents w/out lots of embedded graphics and such.

Oh, and they don't produce a thousand documents a month anyhow.

Anonymous said...

once again...

between 25 and 250 years to fill a 500gb hard drive

maybe we could start collecting pennies for the next upgrade

Tim White said...

I think I have some soda bottles in my car. I would normally give them to whomever is collecting donations at stop n shop. But in this case, maybe I could fund this "costly endeavor."

This is so typical of the Democratic Rubber Stamp Council. They apparently don't take any direction from the voters, since they're occupied taking direction from staff.

This Council effectively opposes improved transparency and that's shameful.

Anonymous said...

Hard drives hold data. The storage device to hold BS might be much more expensive.

Anonymous said...

You Go Tim!