School of Applied Computing Final Year Exhibition

05.06.2015

Abdi Hassan: Open Government Data Visualisation - Food Standard Agency FSA 

Swansea School of Applied Computing Final Year Exhibition, abdi-hassan-poster

Our students have spent the whole year working on a research and software-based project across the different topic areas. They were invited to TechHub, an entrepreneurial start-up hub for businesses, to set up their technical posters which represented on one sheet of A1 paper their whole year of work. The posters provide students with something eye-catching to take to interviews that summarises the independent project work they have undertaken during the final year.

Employers from TechHub, DVLA, Waters Creative, E-Development, Fishfeed, Dyfed-Powys Police, SharpCode, Vocal Eyes and more attended to speak to our final year students at the event. 

Lecturer Sue Maw said: “The exhibition aims to help our graduates to get jobs and practice interviews. It’s really interesting to see all the awesome projects; they could be games, business software, we have someone who has written some software for charities, and we have some business-oriented projects. So, it’s great practice for these guys even if they don’t get a job today, which we hope they do. They will practice discussing their work and abilities. So it’s quite fun, quite informal and they also get to try out their interview skills.”

Abdi Hassan: BSc Software Engineering

Why did you choose Software Engineering?

I was always interested in computing. I wanted to learn coding so that I could create something of interest. Everything is on the web and so I wanted to learn the right skills to contribute to society.

Why did you choose UWTSD?

I looked at various universities online, I looked at UWTSD and found the course content to be the most interesting and specific, rather than general computer science.

What did you base your project on?

My project was based on Open Government Data which is data produced or commissioned by government or government controlled entities. Open data can be freely used, reused and redistributed by anyone: See more at: http://opengovernmentdata.org/. The purpose of open data is transparency, releasing social and commercial value, creating innovations and enabling citizens to engage in government decision-making.

I focused on the Food Standard Agency (FSA) – by using everyday data I presented it in a visualised form. This enables the user to view restaurants in their area, grouped by Star Rating. You can compare Swansea food ratings against different post codes. It also enables you to select a restaurant to view its location. This software is now available to use on: http://food.d3s.co/ - enter the first line of your postcode to view the star ratings of restaurants in your area.

What was the Final Year Exhibition at TechHub like?

I think having the A1 poster is useful because it allows me to understand and explain the project to other people outside the University who have real-world industrial experience. They are able to see what you are talking about while you engage.  At TechHub I spoke to a lot of people who took interest in my project,  they were able to use it and I was also able to show them results and outcomes, the project was compared to official websites in a positive way.

Having the opportunity to explain my project increased my ability to communicate to industry. It gave me the opportunity to practice answering questions. I would say it is a great event in many ways. I was also able to ask questions too and find out what languages industry are using and the type of work they are undertaking. These questions were credible for my future learning.

What is it like living in Swansea?

Swansea is a nice city. People travel miles to see the sea, we are able to see it every day. We take lunch to the beaches, go horse riding and get involved in water sports. Swansea is peaceful – you’re not overcrowded, but there is also a lot going on at the same time. You have time to study and do outdoor activities.