Houston Hackathon Idea Series: Restaurant inspection data

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As the City of Houston prepares for the 3rd Annual Houston Hackathon, we will be highlighting a variety of potential projects that you can work on. This week we are highlighting a project around restaurant inspections.

Houston is a food city. We’ve been called the most dynamic food city in the U.S. by Departures magazine. There are so many restaurant choices that choosing where to eat can feel overwhelming. You could pick a restaurant based on reviews or recommendations by friends, but how do you know if the restaurant is clean and up to health inspection standards?

Currently, the interface to look-up restaurant inspection violations looks like this: http://houston.tx.gegov.com/media/search.cfm. We think it could be a lot better...

What if there was a map that showed all open restaurant inspection violations? What if there was a rating system developed and restaurant inspection scores were posted on Yelp? What if you scraped Twitter for potential incidents of food poisoning and gave it to the heath department? Food safety is an important and overlooked topic in public health. With your help, we can improve the public's ability to sort out the clean and dirty restaurants.

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