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Katrinalist.net and the PeopleFinder Project


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September 07, 2005

Katrinalist.net and the PeopleFinder Project

Heather Green

Katrinalist.net, a volunteer effort to pull together the huge amount of data about missing people and evacuees, is up. The 88,000 records were entered by hand by volunteers from information gathered around the Web.

This is the work of the PeopleFinder project, a group that is using a Wiki to organize a very ambitious goal of making sense of the data in different digital forms that's being published to Web sites such as Craigslist, posted in chat rooms and entered into databases at non-profits.

I talked to David Geilhufe, one of the people involved in the project last night. There's a good explanation of the project on a his blog. But briefly, this project is akin to work Yahoo is doing with its metasearch tool. But instead of scraping Web sites, the PeopleFinder volunteers have created a spec, called the PeopleFinder Interchange Format (PFIF) to structure the data. They use the spec to enter information into the database and are trying to get nonprofits and other organizations to adopt the spec to use it as well to allow the sharing of data.

The Social Source Foundation, CivicSpace Labs and Salesforce.com Foundation are collaborating on this project, providing storage space and software engineering expertise. Marnie Webb, who started the NPTech del.icio.us tag project kindly pointed me to the PeopleFinder project as an example of a group using tags for a project I am working on. And yes, they're using tags, but that's not the real story.

09:36 AM

Wikis

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pardon, but at least two of your links lead nowhere.

for example, "his blog"

Posted by: niti bhan at September 7, 2005 12:55 PM

Something messed up with the links in the post.

Posted by: neha at September 7, 2005 01:14 PM

Thanks for pointing that out!

Posted by: Heather Green at September 7, 2005 01:27 PM

HI! I AM ON THE INTERNET EVERYDAY AND I CAN!T UNDERSTAND THE POINT OF PUTTING SOMEONE!S PERSONAL INFORMATION ON THE WEB WITH DIFFERENT WEB -SITES LOOKING FOR A LOST LOVE AND NO ONE EVER CONTACTS YOU EVEN IF THEY DON!T HAVE ANY INFORMATION? I MEAN CONTACT NUMBERS ARE PROVIDED. EVEN HELLO THANK YOU FOR USING OUR WEB-SITE WOULD BE NICE. DESPERATE TIMES CALLS FOR DESPERATR MEASURES IS TRUE. I HAVE RECEIVED A CALL FROM A LADY WHO IS HELPING ME TRY AND LOCATE MY BROTHER' HIS NAME IS MR. CLAY CORNETT MISSING SINCE THE STORM. HE!S A LONER' DOES NOT USE A COMPUTER. BLK. MALE BORN 6-27-56 MEDIUM BUILD' MEDIUM COMPLEXION. HAS NAME {CLAY} TATTOOED ON HIS RIGHT ARM I DON!T KNOW HIS SSN.WHEN THIS SWEET LADY CALLED SHE INFORMED ME THEIR WERE TWO CLAY CORNETT!S LISTED. ONE IN TENNESSEE AND ONE IN TEXAS. I DON!T KNOW HOW TO USE THIS INFORMATION TO FIND OUT IF ONE OF THESE GENTLEMEN IS MY BROTHER. I WOULD DEEPLY APPRECIATE IT IF SOMEONE CAN HELP ME AND CONTACT ME AT 832-767-3362 OR 832-851-4782 ANYTIME.I DON!T UNDERSTAND ALL THE NEGATIVITY BEING SHOWN TO THE VICTIMS OF KATRINA' WE HAVE SURVIVED SOMETHING UNIMAGINABLE. THINGS ARE!NT GETTING ANY BETTER. CITIES SAID THEY WERE OPENING THEIR ARMS TO PEOPLE JUST TO RECEIVE MONIES FROM DIFFERENT ORGANIZATIONS{NOT ALL OF THEM} AND WHEN THE MONEY STARTED TO GET SHORT' THEY WANTED EVERYONE TO GO HOME. WOW WHAT A SHOW OF HUMANITY. THE CITIZENS OF NEW ORLEANS DID NOT ASK FOR KATRINA. IF ANYONE HAD A CLUE THINGS WERE GOING TO BE AS BAD AS THEY WERE MORE PEOPLE WOULD HAVE GOTTEN OUT. NOBODY KNEW. THE EVACUATION ORDER WAS GIVEN ENTIRELY TO LATE FOR A CITY THAT SIZE' AND THE OFFICIALS KNEW WHO COULD GET OUT AND WHO COULD!NT. WHEN LIVES ARE THREATHENED IN A DISATER I THINK POLITICS SHOULD PLAY THIER ROLES AND LEAD THERE CITIZENS TO SAFETY IN AMPLE TIME.NO ONE SHOULD HAVE BEEN EXPOSED TO DEATH AND DESTRUCTION AT ANY TIME. THE REPUTATION IN NEW ORLEANS WAS BAD ENOUGH. BECAUSE NEW ORLEANS HAD SUCH A BAD REPUTATION MOST OF THE SURVIVORS ARE BEING LIKE CRIMINALS. NO ON UNDERSTANDS OUR WAY OF LIFE AND IT!S HARD TO TRY AND LIVE SOMEWHERE ELSE THAT HAS ALL TOGETHER DIFFERENT SET OF RULES LIKE' YOU CAN!T STAND IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STEET AND HOLLER HEY NEIGHBOR' HOW YA DOING? TO SOME PEOPLE THAT!S OFFENSIVE' NOT TOLERATED' AND NOT ACCEPTABLE. THEY CALL THAT GREETING IGNORANT. PLEASE DON!T GO TO A DEPARTMENT STORE AND SEE SOMEONE YOU DID NOT KNOW SURVIVED THE STORM AND WHEN YOU SEE EACH OTHER YOU SCREAM THANK GOD HOW IS EVRYBODY! IT!S LIKE YOU!VE COMMITED A CRIME. THINGS WE DO EVERYDAY' A SIMPLE WAY OF LIFE. WITH ALL THE CRIME IN NEW ORLEANS BEFORE THE STORM' PEOPLE SEE US AND IT!S LIKE THEY INSTANTLY BECOME AFRAID. YOU CAN NOT JUDGE A WHOLE CITY. NEW ORLEANS HAS A LOT OF GOOD PEOPLE' LAW ABIDING CITIZENS HARDWORKERS FAMILY ORIENTED AND THE MOST PRAYING PEOPLE IN THE WORLD I KNOW. MOST OF THE CRIME IS BEING DONE BY REPEAT OFFENDERS. ALSO DRUGS AND LACK OF FINANCES. THE TRUTH IS THE TRUTH.FEMA' WHAT A JOKE. WHAT IS A FAMILY OF FIVE WITH THREE PEOPLE PAYING TAXES 'ALL FIVE FAMILY MEMBERS HAD PERSONAL PROPERTY LOST GOING TO DO WITH TWO- THOUSAND DOLLARS TO START ALL OVER AGAIN' WHEN THE FAMILY LEFT WITH ONLY THE CLOTHES NO THIER BACKS? HOW DO THEY FIGURE? I WONDER IF THEY HAD ANY IDEA HOW MUCH CONFLICT THAT WAS. SO FAR AS PEOPLE COMMENTING ON WHAT PEOPLE WERE SPENDING MONEY ON EXCUSE ME ' WE LIVE HOW WE LIVE' LIKE WE DID HOME IN NEW ORLEANS. WE HAD NOTHING TO PROVE TO ANYBODY. TO US IT WAS A NECCESITY. WE DID!NT WANT PEOPLE TO THINK OF US AS THE PEOPLE FROM THE FLOOD' BUT THE PEOPLE FROM NEW ORLEANS.MOST PEOPLE SHOOPED AS A SIMPLY WAY TO CPE AND MAKE A LITTLE SENSE OF THE DEVASTATING TIME THEY JUST HAD. MAYBE IF SOME OF THOSE PEOPLE CAN EXPERIENCE SEEING DEAD BODIES FLOATING IN FRONT THEIR DOORS OR BEING TRAPPED ON A ROOF SURROUNDED BY WATER FOR FOUR DAYS WITH NO FOOD OR WATER WITH NO WAY TO GET HELP OR BE IN THE SUPERDOME OR CONVENTION CENTER BOTH SURROUNDED BY HUNGRY PEOPLE ' PEOPLE WHO HAVE NOT EATEN ' PEOPLE WHO HAVE DIED' PEOPLE WHO WERE SEPERATED AND HAD NO KNOWLEDGE OF WHERE THEY WERE OR IF THEY SURVIED. TRY THAT. THANK YOU FOR YOUR PATIENCE. GOD BLESS

Posted by: sugar at January 22, 2006 10:19 PM

i want to know how come you can find your love ones name on the sits but you can,t pull the page up to find them my brother name is daniel allen him and his wife name is listed but when i go to click on there names it says page can;t be found whats up with that?i know that they are ok but how can i find out ther wereabouts.

Posted by: pam at April 17, 2006 02:18 AM

Looking for Michelle Ducree form Slidell, LA.

Posted by: Lionel Breaux at March 6, 2007 08:35 PM


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