Ally Hume's blog

Making Scotland's medical images available for research

Author: Ally Hume
Posted: 20 Dec 2017 | 13:37

I've worked on many data analysis projects in my career and two common themes are that obtaining the data can be a  significant challenge and that once you obtain it you’ll notice it is very messy.

The National Safe Haven for research using unconsented NHS data

Author: Ally Hume
Posted: 21 Nov 2017 | 16:10

NHS Scotland allows research using routinely collected, unconsented patient data. Additionally, these data can be linked to social data such as education. The research this enables can have an enormous public benefit but the use of these data must be managed very carefully to safeguard privacy and maintain public trust and support.

​EPCC is responsible for building, supporting and hosting the infrastructure of the National Safe Haven, and we continue to develop the infrastructure and software to further enhance the service.

BonFIRE: Giving software people their testbed

Author: Ally Hume
Posted: 24 Apr 2013 | 10:31

Every morning as I walk to my office I pass a closed door that intrigues me. A sign on the door reads "Fluid Dynamics, Wave, wind and current flume, Towing tank." To a software guy this induces awe. Clearly some serious science is taking place behind that door and the need for emergency contact details at the bottom of the sign serves to confirm this. Behind that door lies an experimentation testbed and to my mind experimentation testbeds are cool. Why? Two words: observation and control. Testbeds enable the collection of data that support the observation of what happened during an experiment. That's great but even better is the control part. Testbeds support controlling conditions that normally cannot be controlled. How does this tyre perform in the rain? Let's switch the rain on and see!