Communities Technology Centers (CTCs), such as libraries and nonprofits, teach people vital digital literacy skills. However, many of these organizations have no way to measure the impact of their digital literacy programs. Without a way to quantify impact, CTCs can neither assess the effectiveness of program services nor communicate the impact to funders. Outcomes-based evaluations offer a method to bridge this divide. With that in mind, I created ready to use protocols for surveys, focus groups and class observation that CTCs may use to assess digital literacy outcomes. These ready to use protocols may be used by CTCs to assess outcomes, to better understand program needs and strengths, demonstrate success to funders and potential funders, and ultimately to help ensure that all people have both access and ability to use information and communication technologies.
Finding a place to park in Seattle is difficult. With so many different signs and restrictions in place it can be confusing to determine where it is safe to park. As a result, we have developed a mobile application named SafeSpot that will help Seattleites and visitors find parking and alleviate the stresses of being towed or ticketed. SafeSpot does this by showing the locations and restrictions of real parking signs in the city of Seattle on an easy-to-use map. Users can also press a “park my car” button to verify that they are parking in a valid location, keep track of that location, and remind themselves when their parking has expired. It is essential for users to be able to find information quickly and easily. By reducing clutter and using detailed icons to represent parking signs on the map, our application should be simple to pick up and use.
The Bill and Melinda Gates foundation, interested in solving education or welfare related problems in developing countries, is looking for the solutions that could better gauge the demography of a country. Lack of any concrete census data from Afghanistan can be substituted by tracking migration patterns of people through Call Detail Records (CDR) from cellular subscribers. We came up with a framework to visualize short-term movement over long distance and long-term migration patterns of people based on CDR, and to correlate these patterns. We track inter-provincial migration and how it is varies in response to Geopolitical events like Bomb-blasts, Flood, and Snowfall. CDR data is also supplemented with complementary data from airtime top up activity to account for socioeconomic factors of the subscriber.
Managing pets can take a great amount of work and time. It involves repetitive tasks and a lot of learning. This can especially be challenging for serious pet owners who want to provide the best care for their pets while going through their own busy lives. To address this challenge, we’re developing Pet Files, which allows pet owners to stay more organized and better manage their pets, individually or together with others. With this mobile app, pet owners are able to keep detailed information of their pets, set up routines, and share the same information with housemates and/or caretakers, all in one place. Now, pet owners are more able to effectively manage and keep up with their pets’ needs anywhere, anytime.
Alaska Airlines, the 7th largest passenger airline in the US, employs around 1400 pilots and first officers. It requires extensive planning and forecasting to plan for flight trips by accommodating varying schedules of the pilots. Over- or under-estimation of pilot’s flying time impacts the overall costs, and it needs to be utilized efficiently as hiring pilots is expensive. After extensive research we came up with a solution in the form of a predictive analytics algorithm. It considers the pilot’s historical data comprising of variables such as vacation and training hours, and helps in predicting the open flying time for the pilots. This solution will automate the process of calculating open flying time and will assist the team at Alaska to prepare pilot’s monthly schedule in advance. The nearly accurate estimation will lead to elimination of superfluous costs resulting from over/under estimation of open flying time and will ultimately lead to heightened pilot productivity.
Our client, Test Innovators, provides practice curriculums for the Independent School Entrance Exam (ISEE) in an effort to address the gap in resources for adequate preparation. The biggest issue holding them back from success was a process that analyzed the standardized grading system which would give them insightful information to use and relay to their users. We tackled this problem by performing data cleansing, modeling, and analysis on data sets provided by the client which was collected from students who had already taken their practice exams. To gauge success and effectiveness, our user’s scores will be 10% higher than non-Test Innovator users and our system will also provide grade predictability within one grade level since the stanine grading scale ranges from level one to level nine. With this ISEE grading analysis process, we provide high levels of confidence and preparation for our client’s users in their test-taking careers.
Libraries of all types often need expertise and advice from outside of their institutions. Where do they turn? To consulting agencies. But finding the right agency can be a daunting first step for any undertaking. What if libraries had one consulting agency that could expertly advise them on any type of project? Through extensive market research, we have helped to lay the foundation for a consulting agency geared to serving libraries in any endeavor. This small business is set to launch in September 2014, and plans to serve libraries throughout Washington State, with long term goals of geographic expansion, as well as expanding service to other cultural knowledge institutions.
The Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) offers free online access to over 5.5 million images and other records from organizations throughout America. With such a rich collection, discovering and contextualizing material on specific topics can be difficult for users. Our participation in the DPLA Digital Curation Pilot, creating a digital collection titled Religion in America Since 1900, will provide the DPLA with a high-quality addition to their topic-based access points. We developed a collection in Omeka using both materials from the DPLA and other digital resources as appropriate. We researched copyright status, shaped records into larger stories and themes, and developed accompanying text for the images. If selected by the DPLA, the final product will offer users an additional access point to locate material of interest, highlight historically important content from the DPLA’s partners, and support the DPLA’s goal of providing a portal for public discovery.
Undergraduate students need a way to understand how libraries fit in with their education and how the academic research process works. The librarians at UW help students understand the information world and develop critical inquiry skills. However, they cannot always be present at the point of need. What the UW Libraries need is a librarian in a box. Research 101 is an online platform that hosts short videos, example assignments, and assessment tools to support student information needs. Instructors and librarians can adjust content to specific disciplines and easily embed content into course sites and guides. Additionally, we have developed a plan to make the platform sustainable, flexible, and easy to update with new or revised modules. It is available to institutions beyond the UW Libraries, and our hope is that the information will be presented to more students and lead to success in academic research.
The Early Seattle Theatre History Project (ESTHP) is a digital history project launching its website later this year. The website’s mission is to help enrich the research of scholars, students, and subject enthusiasts. The ESTHP team hopes to do this by supplying the researcher with access to a plethora of primary resources. However, while the team began to familiarize themselves with the materials, the necessity of contextualizing some aspects of the theatre and theatre history arose. For my project I created a prototype digital exhibit for ESTHP focused on Seattle theatre during World War I. The digital exhibits contain essays and digital objects that focus on explaining certain themes brought up by the collection materials. The exhibits hope to illuminate subjects that might be missed by viewing the collection materials on their own. When the website launches other exhibits will be available to help guide researchers in understanding the collection.