Blog posts by Mike Thompson

Internationalisation and right-to-left language support in Cantabular

A couple of years ago, we added the capability to localise data and user interfaces in Cantabular for different languages. While our core data service handles data only in a single language, our metadata service supplements this by allowing labels and other reference metadata to be loaded in multiple languages so that all metadata for populations, variables and categories can be translated.

Flexible publication of metadata with GraphQL

Last year we added a new capability to Cantabular to allow dissemination of structured metadata alongside real-time creation of safe, cross-tabulations from large datasets that the rest of Cantabular focuses on.

Exploring automated output checking with OpenSAFELY

Over the summer months, we had a few conversations with the interesting folk at the University of Oxford DataLab who have been building OpenSAFELY—an open source, transparent platform for secure analysis of electronic health records—to see if we could integrate our automated output checking capability into their systems, to help speed the process of release of research outputs.

ICES conference video: Using Cantabular to explore and visualise company data

We recently attended the International Conference on Establishment Statistics. We had an interesting time hearing about some of the challenges statistical organisations, particularly in the US, have with protecting and disseminating establishment data and the move to differentially private methodologies.

Republishing the historic 1911 Irish census as an interactive dataset

Today we are releasing a new public website that makes the returns from the 1911 Irish census available as a preliminary statistical release to be queried by anyone. All kinds of cross-tabulations and analysis of this data that were previously impossible are now easily accessible as open data through our user interface and API.

Irish Census 1911: Data collection and processing methodology

This document describes the scope, methods, assumptions and limitations of the work that The Sensible Code Company and collaborators have collectively completed on historical Ireland census data, collected from The National Archives of Ireland’s website, in order to publish a publicly available interactive dataset at

Automating disclosure checks with our Disclosure Rules Language

Last week we released a new version of Cantabular with a big new feature: a disclosure rules language. The disclosure rules language, or DRL, is a tool to help statisticians automate decisions about table publication which they might previously have made using manual analysis techniques.