Wriggle Discounts Super-Lister!

We have a pretty cool start-up here in Bristol called Wriggle whose aim is to help local restaurants fill free tables by offering discounts through the Wriggle mobile app (and now website). The additional advantage for these businesses is that people pay up front so it also avoids the problem of “no-shows”. It’s a bit like Groupon but more local and with less spammy offer for underwear and beauty treatments.

The Wriggle app will show you what deals you can get near you but I wanted to know what the best deal is in terms of the discount itself so I built a quick Angular application – The Wriggle Discounts Super Lister! – that pulls the data from Wriggle’s underlying API and allows me to resort the data by % saving or saving in £s. I can also sort by popularity to see what deals other people are snatching up (mostly Pizzarova at the moment!) or by deals that are running out that I might want to snap up before they’re gone.

Just another random little toy project! Click on the screenshot to check it out. I’m particularly proud of the loading gif…

wriggle discount super lister

Plotting Historical Parking Data Using Angular and NVD3

I was looking for a good and free charting component I could use in Angular. I’ve played around with some raw D3 in the past but I didn’t want to re-invent the wheel that much. Fortunately I found the NVD3 library which works on top of D3 to simplify common charting tasks line line charts, bar charts, etc and, even better, somebody’s already created an Angular directive on top of that.
…click here to read the rest…

Bristol Tramways

I think we can all agree that with an average rush-hour traffic speed of 14.5 mph, getting around in Bristol is not as quick as we might like it to be. Between 1875 and 1941 though, long before the days of First buses, you might have taken a Bristol Tramways tram to the office!

[Disclaimer: this is a bit of a diversion from normal posting topics but I’ve never heard anyone talk about Bristol’s trams before so I guess the history isn’t that well known and I thought it was interesting.]

Ever wondered why the Cooperative in the centre has a big clock on it? Well that used to be their offices:

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Bristol Tramways operated 237 double decker trams like those pictured connecting a surprisingly wide area as shown in this route map from 1911…
…click here to read the rest…

Know Your Place, Bristol!

I stumbled upon this hidden away little BCC project yesterday called Know Your Place.

It’s actually two projects in one:
1. An interactive map viewer where you can compare a current map to historical maps
2. A map-based database of site of historical interest and geo-located historical photos

I lost track of quite a long time looking around at how parts of Bristol have changed over the years! Here’s an example looking at Queen Square:

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I knew there was once a road going diagonally through Queen Square but I always wondered what they did about the statue. Now I know – they bent the road around it on each side. Obvious really.

That 1880s map is a work of art.
…click here to read the rest…

State of the City

While I was searching around for some city population data yesterday, I came across the document “Bristol State of the City mid-2015” (PDF link) which has some data “fun facts” about Bristol.

Here are a few I found interesting so putting them down for future reference:

  • More than 180 countries of birth and 91 languages spoken (Census 2011)
  • Life expectancy for women is 0.3 years below the national average but for men is 1.2 years below the national average (ONS 2011-2013)
  • 59% of Bristolians are overweight or obese
  • ~35,000 full time students live in Bristol during term time
  • 46% of working aged residents have at least one degree (compared to 36% nationally)
  • Bristol residents are more highly qualified than all the other Core Cities except Cardiff and is the third strongest academic cluster in the UK (after Oxford and Cambridge)
  • 193,000 homes (in 2014) – 55% owner-occupied / 24% private rented / 21% social rented
  • Average house price was £198,600 in Feb 2015 (Rightmove suggests it’s 8% higher than that now at around £215,500)
  • 93 crimes reported per 1000 people
  • 14.5mph is the average speed of traffic in rush hour
  • 45% of household waste is recycled (In 2010 it was only 8%)
  • 71% of residents are concerned about the impacts of Climate Change
  • 70% of shops, cafes, restaurants, pubs are independent
  • £B 350,000 of Bristol Pounds in circulation
  • 40% of the world’s wildlife films are linked to Bristol studios
  • 217,300 people are in employment in Bristol – an employment rate of 70.9% (Dec 2014)

The Bristol API

Bristol wants to become a “programmable city” and right at the end of last year Bristol City Council unveiled The Bristol API. Let’s take a look…

Bristol programmable city

The Bristol API

In 2015 Bristol City Council’s City Innovation team appointed the London-based software company Urban Things to build an API to give developers access to transport data for Bristol in real time (plus some other nice features like route planning).

It looks like a dig at the council to mention that the company hired to do this was a London company when I’m sure there are plenty of companies in Bristol that could have delivered this but actually Urban Things already have good experience and an established platform for managing bus data so hopefully BCC got a good price with our tax money because of that!

And, dear citizen, you can get access to the Bristol API here for free so don’t say the council never give you anything back!

…click here to read the rest…

Bristol Data Portals and Technology Companies

An attempt to compile a list of the player in Bristol’s open data landscape and other interesting data sources and companies:

Bristol Data

Bristol City Council Open Data Bristol – BCC putting their data out there
Connecting Bristol – Bristol’s digital partnership coordinated by the BCC’s City Innovation Team
Bristol Is Open – a joint venture between University of Bristol and BCC
Bristol API Portal by Urban Things – Bristol Transport data API
Bristol Pinpoint map – a load of GIS data. Not sure if underlying data is available though.
Bristol Air Quality Data – Air quality measurements from around the city

Useful APIs / Data

Forecast.io – Weather data API
UK-AIR – Live UK air quality data from DEFRA
EEA Air Quality Portal – Europe air quality data (live data map)
Open Street Map Geocoding API – convert Lat/Long coordinates to place names and place names to coordinates

Other Cities

Leeds Data Mill
London Data Mill
Bath: Hacked


WindyTy – hypnotic animated wind and weather forecast visualisations

Bristol Exercise Insights from the Strava Global Heatmap?

Strava, a popular GPS run / ride tracking app, have compiled their data into a beautiful Global Heatmap showing the preferred paths of runners and cyclists around the world.

I, of course, have been taking a zoomed in look at Bristol to see what we can learn.

Here are the cycling and running GPS tracks through central Bristol. Single tracks are thin blue lines then as more tracks stack up on a route you get a thicker blue line and then a red thick line for the most common routes.


Strava Bristol Bikes


Strava Bristol Runners

Here are some interesting features I found:
…click here to read the rest…