Rainbow CSV

Hand-editing CSV files can be tricky. When there are many fields in the dataset and their widths vary from record to record, it isn't always immediately obvious what any one particular value represents.

However, help is at hand for users of Microsoft's impressive Visual Studio Code editor, in the form of the Rainbow CSV extension. Simply install this and, the next time you open a CSV file, you'll be greeted by something much more colourful.

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On Strike

A curious topic with which to revive my blog. Ironically, being on strike leaves me at a loose end - with, finally, both the time and the inclination to actually write something new!

As I type this, our fourth day on strike is drawing to a close. Four days of a possible fourteen, with ASOS (Action Short Of a Strike) potentially to follow. This is action by UCU members on an unprecedented scale, reflecting just how angry and determined we are.

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Easy Mapping of Geodata

We ran some more training sessions at ODI Leeds earlier this week, one of them being an introduction to the gathering, cleaning and visualisation of data. Just a couple of days before, I'd received an email inviting me to try the OpenDataSoft platform with course attendees, so that's exactly what we did!

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Open Data Training at BJSS

Here are some photos from last week's Introduction to Open Data training course that ODI Leeds ran at BJSS.

These show an exercise we did in which the attendees worked in groups to create a poster on the impact of open data. They had the option of either dreaming up an idea for themselves or researching an existing case study.

It was an enjoyable session, and it was great to run into some current (on placement) and former students - none of whom were expecting to see me!

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Experiments in JavaFX

This semester, we returned to teaching Java properly in the first year of our degree programmes, after a couple of years where it was very much a junior partner to C++. We didn't have time to cover many of the more advanced features of the language, but I thought I'd give the keener students the opportunity to explore for themselves, so for the final piece of coursework I gave them an opportunity to learn and use JavaFX.

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