GovTribe believes in the power of open government data. In fact, we built our entire business on it. However, as we continue to expand our data sources to deliver the right information to you, there can be bumps in the road. Since we expect transparency from the government, it is only fair we provide a level of transparency into our operations.
On February 8, 2013 around 6:30 PM Eastern you were probably a bit annoyed with hōrd. If you had either USAID or the location Washington, DC added to your hōrd, you received at least 16 push notifications at once. I wanted to write today to first apologize, and second provide insight into what occurred. In short, the events that led to this mishap are as follows:
- USAID awarded the International Rule of Law Technical Assistance Services IQC to roughly 8 different vendors. This is a link to the original solicitation.
- Typically, when a contract is awarded, the award announcement is "connected" to the original solicitation on FBO. Also, for multiple award IQCs, there is a single award announcement listing multiple awardees. This was not the case in this instance. This is apparent by the award announcement not displaying in the opportunity history on the left sidebar of the original notice.
- Instead, USAID issued 8 individual award announcements on FBO that are "disconnected" from the original solicitation. Each of these announcements can be found here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. Each of these notices contain no history in the left sidebar.
- Our data mining logic saw each of these disconnected announcements as both a newly released opportunity as well as an award announcement.
- Newly released opportunities and award announcements both trigger notifications. Because there were 8 disconnected award announcements, at least 16 notifications were sent simultaneously.
GovTribe values your time, which is one of the reasons we built hōrd in the first place. The barrage of push notifications you received last night was not an example of this. While we were able to deliver this key information faster than our competitors, we should have worked harder to account for this anomaly in the source data. Improvements to notifications are currently under way and I hope you continue to both use and provide feedback on hōrd.