This weekend I was bored and thought I'd use one of the awesome data sets the Guardian released lately for free use: a list of all the medals won at the Winter Olympics from 1924 onwards. Using this, with YQL and YUI, I built winterolympicsmedals.com, a research interface that allows you to check the history of Winter Olympics medals by country, year, sport, and games:
The data was released by the Guardian as an excel sheet on Google Docs, so the first step for me was to download the information and save it as a CSV file. Originally I started using PHP to convert the CSV and parse it, but then I realized it made more sense to use YQL to allow myself to access and filter the data in the CSV in a more flexible way.
However, if you use YQL to parse the CSV you get not very useful identifiers back. If you run the following request in YQL:
select * from csv where url="http://winterolympicsmedals.com/medals.csv"
What you will get back is row/col data:
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