As an user of both Ancestory.com and FamilyTree.com I have been amazed at the new ways we can explore our family history and make connections with relatives around the globe. I starting thinking - what do people love almost as much as their family? Their Pets! Why isn't there such a service to connect and trace the lineage of our furry friends - explore their related breeds and what the different traits / characteristics they might have. This helped spark the idea for PetFamily but we are just now getting off the ground and have so much more we want to explore!
What it does
PetFamily is a web service that uses a Graph Database to model the relationships between breeds of animals and their family trees. The system connects Pets, Pet Owners, Breeders, and enthusiasts around the globe to help them find a specific pet, ancestors of a pet, or perhaps even their next pet.
- Similarity comparison between breeds
- Pet Family Lineage Search + Exploration
- Breeder navigation and search
- Pet Trait + Training Education
How I built it
PetFamily was built on top of a Watson Graph Database available as a service from IBM. We scripted multiple components to feed the graph (accessing Pet Registration Databases, Breeder Registrations, Enthusiast Websites) and plan to expand as we get new users.
Challenges I ran into
One of the most challenging aspects of the implementation was reconciling state pet registration systems with breeder information. This data is not easily defined but we hope that as PetFamily grows we can provide an easy way for breeders to provide their new pet owners with details regarding their pet's family tree.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
Designing a system that works on a Graph Database and incorporates advanced machine learning algorithms was very challenging but also very rewarding. We wanted to make the system interactive, engaging, and enlightening.
What I learned
We learned that making linkages between different types of data can uncover a world of information - its just a matter of looking at the data in the right context.
What's next for PetFamily - Your Animal Family Tree
We hope to demo PetFamily at RootsTech and make the site publicly available for users. We are currently using a demo system of the Watson Graph so with help from RootsTech we will focus on licensing and how we might expand going forward.
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