Monday, May 26, 2008

Gazette announcement data in XML format

Over the last months I worked a lot on finding and cataloging the Royal Gazette announcements, especially adding the entities affected so I can then find all announcements relevant to a specific district or municipality. I also did some coding in C# to assist my works with the announcements, most notably the search for new announcements. So far I concentrated on the actual functions, the user interface is still very crude.

As a small example below is the XML code for the creation of the minor district Vibhavadi in Surat Thani.

<entry description="Creation of King Amphoe Vibhavadi" title="ประกาศกระทรวงมหาดไทย เรื่อง แบ่งเขตท้องที่อำเภอคีรีรัฐนิคม จังหวัดสุราษฎร์ธานี ตั้งเป็นกิ่งอำเภอวิภาวดี" volume="109" page="19" issue="53 ง ฉบับพิเศษ" uri="2535/D/053/19.PDF" publication="1992-04-22" effective="1992-04-01" sign="1992-03-13">
<create geocode="8419" type="KingAmphoe" parent="8408">
<reassign geocode="841901" oldgeocode="840804"/>
<reassign geocode="841902" oldgeocode="840805"/>

It is rather self-explaining I think - the fields inside the "entry" tag describe the announcement, including the date of signature, publication and the date it becomes effective, the URL within the online database, and the citation information volume, issue and page. The child nodes describe what the announcement is about, the creation of a new King Amphoe, which is a subordinate of another district - using the geocode to identify it, which is easier to parse (and easier to type) than the name Khiritat Nikhom. And as part of this creation, two Tambon got reassigned and therefore changed their geocode.

Though I doubt there is anyone else similar crazy about the administrative subdivisions of Thailand, and also interested in programming or at least XML editing, I have uploaded the whole data and code into an open source project at Google code, which offers a project hosting including a version control system. But in case anyone is interested, just look at the Tambon project, any help, comments or ideas are welcome.

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