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Fall Semester 2011

This semester at TWC I assisted Xian Li with the OrgPedia organizational transparency site. While I tried to help a bit with the OrgPedia pages and the information they present, my most significant contribution to the project was the board members network demo I created with Bharath Santosh. I already blogged about the creation of the demo here. It was definitely a highlight of the semester for me, and now that I have some experience with using Python to pull and format web data, I’d like to further explore visualization with the d3.js library – perhaps next semester.

Outside of TWC, in the former half of the semester I worked on an independent study about my experiences as a intern in the US House of Representatives this past summer. I ended up writing almost forty single-spaced pages on the role of information technology in the federal government as I observed it both on the clerical day-to-day side and in larger policy issues such as open government data and cybersecurity strategy. My experience in Washington taught me a lot about the policy implications that the sort of work done at the TWC can have, and on a broader level, the interplay of technology and policy at large.

Overall, I had a great semester, and I’m looking forward to a busy schedule in the new year. I plan to continue my involvement with the TWC Undergraduate Lab.

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