Sunday, January 23, 2011

Court rules that data is software

Orange County claimed that information stored in GIS format is exempt from disclosure under the "software exception" of the CPRA. While the CPRA does exempt government entities from disclosing "computer software developed by a state or local agency," public information processed or formatted for that software is not exempt. Coupled with the County’s obligation to provide public records in the format requested, it seems clear that Orange County is illegally withholding its GIS basemap from the Sierra Club.

Unfortunately, the trial court sided with Orange County and inexplicably held that the GIS basemap constituted software that was exempt from disclosure.

Also, courts rule that e is a rational number, causing calculus to explode.

For the less technically savvy, this is roughly the equivalent of ruling that a Microsoft Word document is software developed by the state, so you can only get state-produced documents carved on stone tablets.

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