IBM Intelligent Operations Center and Open Data

IBM Intelligent Operation Center (or IOC) “is a software solution that is designed to facilitate effective supervision and coordination of operations“. IOC InfoCenter says so, and both product page and announcement letter has more information about it.

Below is a screenshot of my IOC installation after I log in. A map fills the main content area and on the left are data filters, where I can select what data to show on the map. On the upper right there are Notifications, My Activities and other actions relevant to current user. The idea is that IOC user can see all the events what are happening and, if necessary, act on them directly from the IOC user interface.

IOC map view

The map shows area in the center of Helsinki, around the Esplanade Park.

Without data, IOC isn’t really useful. Fortunately, IOC accepts any data and any map too (it may be Google map as shown above or a floor plan of a building or a blueprint of an engine). I chose to use Open Data from Helsinki and browsing the available data, I decided to use traffic accidents in years 2000-2010 and traffic lights in Helsinki.

My scenario of using IOC and the data is that I assume that accidents happen in crossroads without traffic lights and I hope to determine crossroads where City of Helsinki could add new traffic lights.

Importing data to IOC may or may not be trivial, depending on the source data. Plain CSV files can be imported to IOC, but the data I wanted to use was in Google Earth’s KML-format. So I had to first convert it to CSV and for that I used a little tool called KMLCSV Converter. After having the data in CSV, I wielded scripting magic (sed & awk and python) to further convert and enrich data so that I can easily import it to IOC.

After importing the data and creating filters, IOC user interface allows me to select what data sources are visible on the map. The screenshots below shows various views of the data near the Esplanade Park (click the image to view it larger).

My assumption that accidents happen in crossroads without traffic lights didn’t really get confirmation. There are couple of accident-prone crossroads but the data I used is hardly enough evidence to convince the City of Helsinki to build new traffic lights. Perhaps more data would help to convince them…?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *