01 April 2006


Manitoba Hansard

The Manitoba Legislative Assembly has its Hansard online back to December 1994. Fortunately, all of these Hansard reports are available in HTML. From November 2002, they are also available in pdf format.

Anyone looking for good examples of bloatware can do no better than to look at the Manitoba Hansard's HTML files. They contain an amazing quantity of pure bloatWikipedia's article on software bloat states that "the cause may be a programmer's lack of attention to optimization or design, often frowned upon by other programmers as a sign of carelessness or laziness." Here's a prime example, from Manitoba Hansard, October 28, 2005

<p class=MsoNormal style='tab-stops:.25in .5in .75in'>
<span class=MsoPageNumber>
<b style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'>
<span style='mso-ansi-language:EN-US'>Mr. Speaker:
<span class=MsoPageNumber>
<span style='mso-ansi-language:EN-US'>
<span lang=EN-CA>Dispense.

That bloated code (above) produces exactly the same screen display as the following:

<b>Mr. Speaker:</b> Dispense.<br />

There are no navigation links in any page, HTML or pdf. All pages are orphans.

A search of the Manitoba Hansard for the earliest mention of "information highway" turned up one on June 13, 1995.

The earliest mention of "internet" is believed to be on December 1, 1994. This is the earliest Manitoba Hansard record available online, thus is the earliest that I could search. It is possible that an earlier mention of "internet" occurs in the printed Manitoba Hansard.

I found no mention of any plan to make Hansard records before December 1994 available online.

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