Open Knowledge Scotland’s first Open Data Maker Night at TechCube had a good turn out with a great variety of people from different backgrounds and with different interests in making with data. After throwing up some ideas, several groups were formed and here is what came out:
- Some people came along to learn more about the nuts and bolts of how data is collected, stored and organised. Amy Guy got stuck in with a crash course on linked data and SPARQL and introduced the concept of ontologies. Despite some head scratching, Amy did well to illustrate ontology using the example of trees which created a bit of hilarity.
- Discussion was had about how to create a practical way for charities to quantify the value of their social impact and to help charities go through the process of the social impact assessment process.
- 3D printing was a hot topic with a small group looking at printing an area of the Gorbals for a project that Duncan Bain was developing. There is a promise of 3D printable data from OSM making an appearance at the next maker night — watch this space.
- OK Scotland regular Gary Martin showed people something he’s developed to display unstructured text data in a ‘self organising map’ that clusters words from documents according to how frequently they appear and how the words seem to relate to each other in the document. There was discussion about using this technology to better understand government policy documents, which a number of people thought could benefit their work quite a bit.
- Some folk got together to discuss social enterprises and startups and how they work.
It was great to see discussions around how digging into data can possibly help charities, built environment, assist people to understand complex information and people getting together to share their knowledge. Ideas for projects that have come from our regular meetups and the Maker Night can be found on our IdeaScale. The next Open Data Maker Night is Tuesday July 1st from 6:30 at TechCube.