Bath Hacked: Hacking for newbies

Screen Shot library stats

Playing with open data isn’t just for developers, theres lots you can do even if you aren’t a programmer. Yesterday we had an introduction to the Bath Hacked Data Store. Hosted on Socrata its not just a place to dump data, you can interrogate, analyse and visualise it too (even on a map)

After a quick overview of the capabilities we started having a play, between us we generated a map where the places with the worst hygiene rating,  looked at the trends of different car park usage throughout the day, crime and publishing. Apparently there was a boom in publishing books in Bath in 2006 (and also a peak in books published about Bath then too… coincidence?)

publishing per year in bath

Personally I’m interested in Libraries and books so i started to see what the lending patterns were in the county. The important revaluation is that YES PEOPLE DO USE THE MOBILE LIBRARIES. A LOT. So don’t cut their funding. When I was little and visited my Granny, the mobile library used to visit her and what a magical vehicle it was. If i was unable to travel I would hate to be cut off from a library. According to the data: Library Lending Transactions (Apr 2012-Jan 2014) – a summary of library loans in B&NES libraries from the period April 2012 to Januar 2014, people used the mobile libraries almost as much as they used Keynsham or Midsomer Norton (if you can’t see the label mobile libraries is the bottom middle lilac box)

Screen Shot mobile library

And finally its IDEAS which are important, even if like me you can’t code there are plenty of ways which you can interact with open data and always join together with friendly developers if you do want to build an app 🙂

pennys shoe app

image source



Bath Hacked: Liberate data and make cool things for your city

bathhacked21 1

Open data is data that can be freely used, reused and redistributed by anyone, however what is the good of data just sitting there not doing anything.

“Bath: Hacked is a joint council/community initiative that aims to put open data and smart thinking at the heart of the city. Our primary mission is to bring bright people and quality data together to do useful things for the community”

What Bath is saying is “what do you want to know?” “what problems do you want to solve?”. The next question is “is there the data out there that can help?” “are there people who have ideas?” and “what skills can you bring together to make something cool for your city?”

Bath:Hacked 2.1 is the second big 2 day hack event for people who are inspired by open data to create something for their city. It all kicked off yesterday and there are projects using planning data, council spending, heritage plaques, library use stats, literary identity and more!

Check out the website, meet up and twitter @bathhacked #hacked21