The University of Washington Special Collections Library received a request from a Japanese author who was searching for archival photographs to accompany his forthcoming book on Douglas MacArthur. The author was specifically looking for photographs that linked MacArthur to American Freemasonic orders in Asia. He needed to know what Special Collections photographs were available related to the topic and detailed information about them including dates, locations and names of individuals. Confronted with thousands of unprocessed photographs, I organized the collection in accordance with the Special Collections archival process of arrangement, description and access creation. Through processing the photographs and some detective work, the author’s information needs were met. By the end of the project, 15 photographs were discovered that directly related the Seattle Nile Shrine organization to MacArthur’s subordinate officers in Japan in the 1950’s.
In the Automobile Industry, one of the major challenges faced by the dealers is to understand the priorities of the customers before purchasing a particular car. In the current Sci-Fi age this task is even more challenging as selling a car no longer depends on the inventory, nor price and reputation. In this Capstone project, we are statistically mining consumer survey data and web warehouse data collected in last 3 years by Cobalt (a digital marketing company owned by ADP). The purpose is to better understand the needs of automotive shoppers at different stages in the car shopping process. In our analysis, we connected multiple data sources and built a statistical model that enables the dealers to categorize website visitors into different categories (like new car/used car) of shoppers based on their browsing behavior. The model has been rigorously analyzed and tested and it has proved extremely important and helpful in improving targeted marketing and advertising for Cobalt.
A joint venture of Microsoft and Accenture, Avanade is a global company that delivers technical solutions to enterprise businesses. This technology driven company resolved to revitalize their recruitment methods and create a more tech savvy presence at career fairs by creating a digital application to collect candidate information. Our team’s project was to design and develop a Windows 8 application for Avanade that electronically collects candidate information and aggregates applicant information into a format that can be easily shared between Avanade employees and systems. Our goal for the application was not only to produce a convenient information management tool for Avanade recruiters, but also to contribute to creating a high quality first impression for Avanade candidates. With this project, we have successfully provided Avanade a proof of concept on which they can expand and make more accommodating for use in their international locations.
Our research aimed to improve student experience in large university lectures. Specifically, we examined the use of backchannels (a moderated chat alongside lecture) and the effectiveness thereof with respect to students’ grades, level of participation, and overall satisfaction. We began with a survey of 149 responding students, and focused further with interviews. The survey reached two academic quarters of students from an introductory informatics course. Respondents self-categorized into three groups based upon their interaction with the backchannel: contributors, observers, and non-users. This split developed into our personas to interview. Our findings revealed significant supporting evidence of greater interest in lecture and higher participation with backchannel involvement. Further qualitative analysis suggests, also, that backchannel contributors achieved higher grades. Thus, backchannels can enhance student experience in large lectures--especially with our feedback-inspired redesign. Though we prioritized student experience, we believe that instructors, likewise, benefit from a more engaged student base.
One of the challenges that non-profit organizations face is understanding and measuring how successful technology is being adopted in under-developed countries. Furthermore, it is equally as difficult to understand how quickly a technology is spreading and to which communities. To help alleviate these challenges, we propose to build an interactive web application to visualize patterns of technology adoption and diffusion within social networks. These patterns will be derived from the analysis of CDR (Call Detail Records) and mobile money transaction histories. This tool will be used by our partners at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to showcase the power of CDR to policymakers and other telecom operators.
The Road Map Project is a collective-impact initiative whose mission is to double the rates of post-secondary degree attainment by 2020 and to close the achievement gaps present in South King County by aligning the efforts of government and communities, of which data plays a critical role. In 2013 the RMP sought to improve its existing folder-based data management by building an analytical data system. The work consists of three phases: building an operational data store, building the data warehouse, and developing applications for reporting and exploration. Organizationally, the system will allow for more automated reporting and data management, freeing up time to engage with stakeholders and develop exploratory analyses and predictive models of student success. More broadly, the impact of this work will empower parents, communities and districts to better explore and measure educational outcomes thereby building account ability and more rapidly aligning efforts at achieving results.
My project makes investing in Exchange-Traded Funds, or ETFs, easier by guiding the investor through an easy-to-follow three step process. Investors, especially ones new to the trading industry, are often overwhelmed at the sheer amount of information that is available to them. I addressed this issue by creating an application that uses simple, questionnaire-style input from the investor to determine their individual needs to create an investment strategy based on current market data. The end result is a straightforward list of ETFs that can be taken to any brokerage firm and immediately traded. By limiting the amount of technical details the investor has to understand, and focusing on a simple, easy-to-follow guide, I give the investor an intuitive and powerful tool for increasing their financial stability.
Building the Bavarian Village: Creating a Finding Aid for the Price/Rodgers Leavenworth Collection Architectural Drawings
The mission of UW Special Collections is to provide access to its collections for academic and research purposes while also preserving and maintaining materials for long-term preservation. However, as a public institution with limited funding and staff, UW Special Collections has acquired a number of collections which have not been thoroughly processed, essentially rendering them inaccessible to users. One such collection is the Price/Rodgers Leavenworth Collection, which documents the efforts of Ted Price and Bob Rodgers to transform the Washington town of Leavenworth into a Bavarian village to increase tourism and revitalize its failing economy in the 1960s. My project—the creation of a finding aid—will make this collection both findable and searchable on the Special Collections website, thereby increasing access to the collection for the public, a benefit to both the user and the organization.
Hispanic day laborers are experiencing serious difficulties to seek and maintain the jobs. They have uncertain jobs, very low wages, no benefits or health insurance, limited access and use of information technologies. Casa Latina, our sponsor, is a Seattle-based nonprofit service agency serving the Hispanic community. We would explore the needs and expectations of day laborers in Seattle area and address these needs by building a website that enable networking and manage reputation. This website would help day laborers to show their skills and experiences to potential clients through an easy to use, bilingual (English and Spanish) platform. Clients can also get in touch with the day labors they hope to work for them. In order to make the further profile management easier for Casa Latina staff, we built a user-friendly dashboard which allow further edits according to their needs.
Multnomah County Library’s (MCL) Día de los Niños y Día de los Libros is a multicultural celebration of childhood, literacy, and community connections. In partnership with MCL’s We Speak Your Language Department and 11 library branches, our team streamlined the promotion, planning, and organization of three Día programs. Previously, Día was designed and implemented by individual library branches, but was then centralized to maximize staff time. We coordinated all aspects of the program and prepared supplies in advance. According to patron, volunteer, and staff evaluations, we improved the planning process and delivered an outstanding library program. This year, over 3,600 patrons of diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds came to the library for three Saturday celebrations in April. Families participated in literacy activities and learned about free library resources. After attending Día, many families indicated they were more likely to read to their children and return to the library.