Thursday, January 19, 2006

Saving puppies with data

A friend works at the Oakland Animal Shelter and just sent me a data base of all their charges since 1997. Being a government office, it used to be in some old DOS-based system. Someone finally got it into a flat Excel file, and I'd offered to help with the analysis.

It looks usable. It has more than 40,000 records, and it's reasonably clean. We'll be doing things like looking at which factors lead to a high likelihood of adoption, or other outcomes. It's possible that there are some things the data will suggest that will make the lives of the critters that much better. Maybe some critter that might have gotten put down will get that extra week of being on the market, since the data shows it's got high odds of going home with someone.

With my laptop, I shall save fuzzy kitties.