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Introducing Leila Deljkovic

Leila Deljkovic joined Koordinates as an intern for Summer of Tech, and is continuing to work with us on a range of exciting projects.

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Posted by Matt McGregor
July 19th, 2018

Leila Deljkovic

Leila Deljkovic is a computer engineering student at the University of Auckland, who joined Koordinates for Summer of Tech. Since then, she’s been working one day a week at the Koordinates Auckland office on a range of projects, including improving Koordinates search, upgrading our Wagtail instances, and improving our APIs.

We caught up over a Slack call following the visit of Minister Megan Woods to the Koordinates offices.

You just met Minister Megan Woods? 

Yeah, she popped in briefly! Anne Harper walked her through Koordinates and geospatial data, which was great.  

I hear you’ve recently finished exams. How’d they go?

They went surprisingly well! I’ve got one more semester left here at the University of Auckland, where I’m completing a Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Systems. And then I’m done!

During your Summer of Tech project, you were working on improving Koordinates search. Can you tell us a bit more about that? 

When I came to Koordinates, the project was just an idea that had been floating around, really—though one that lots of Koordinates users had apparently suggested over the years. Without going into too much technical detail, we basically wanted to make it easier for users to surface data relating to a particular place. 

This particular project hadn’t been done before at Koordinates, mostly because some of the tools that are available weren’t quite up to scratch. But by the time I started, the tools available had evolved, and it had become more possible. So we thought I could give it a shot! 

By the end of the internship, the basic functionality was there, but there’s still some more work to be done to make it easily usable. I hope to be able to return to the project later in the year, as it could be a really useful feature. 

What challenges did you face? 

I had to learn about the search component, and also how the data is structured, and all of that was a big learning curve. Another challenge was wrangling the components we were using. None of the tools really do this out of the box, so it took a bit of work to get it going. I guess there was a lot of moulding components to do what they didn’t really want to do. 

Was it fun learning about the world of geospatial data?

It was really interesting. I had no background in the area at all, so there was a lot to learn. In my first week, Hamish Campbell (Product Manager at Koordinates) showed me QGIS, and I learnt how to build a map from geospatial data. It was pretty great to figure that out—though there’s obviously still heaps for me to learn. 

What else have you been working on? 

There’s a lot going on. When I came back after the internship, I helped to finish off the rewrite of Koordinates’ ‘Users and Groups’ feature, which data publishers use to manage user access rights. I just finished updating our Wagtail instances. Now, I’m looking at automating some of the reporting we do around Customer Experience, which should hopefully save us some time each month.