Design Engineering
Showcase 2021


Data Analysis
Machine Learning

Project Details

Xu Yao
APO (Asian Pacific Operation)
Dr Mazdak Ghajari
MQA Data Analysis Intern
Retail and Consumer Goods

As an intern in Apple’s manufacturing quality assurance team, I’ve practiced server and database manipulation for data engineering, learned various statistical methods for data analysis and advanced machine learning algorithms for case study implementations.

Working in a team along with my colleagues, I was able to improve my communication and project management skills, which enables me to leverage my influence on different groups of audiences.

Apple has offered me great opportunities to advance my skillsets in design engineering and implement them in the manufacturing industry, guiding my career to be a data scientist in the future.


Demonstration of Design Engineering Thinking and Skills

Over my placement at Apple, I have engaged in several projects, including App developments, Toolkits buildup, System optimizations, Server study, and machine learning algorithms implementations, gaining wide ranges of skills and knowledge of computer sincere and engineering.

The particular achievements are:

1. Learn and expand manufacturing knowledge of different LOBs, including Module (Battery, Acoustic) and Enclosure (iPad Mac)

2. Develop a highly compatible App in Python using different Libraries (Pandas, Numpy, Scipy);

3. Learn and implement AWS (EC2, S3, Dynamodb) and Tableau (Desktop and Server);

4. Deep Dive into different machine learning algorithms (PCA,k-means, SVMOC, T-SNE, MDS) to implement into real-world projects and optimize and implement others (ResNet: Computer vision and CNN&RNN: Data analysis) later;

Many of my skills from Design Engineering Courses are quite useful that Computing, Machine Learning, and Big Data are the best guidance of the placements; Design Courses enables me to think and communicate deeper to design better system and UI/UX; Engineering and Material&Production support me to be a quick learner in the manufacturing industry.

It has been a valuable experience to broaden and practice the knowledge gained from design engineering and implement versatile skills into the manufacturing industry in such a tech giant company, pursuing the performance and innovations and benefiting your career.

Role and Contributions

I am the data analysis intern in the MQA team at Apple, in which my working scope mainly focuses on App developments, server study, and validation, and system developments and optimizations. Compared with traditional methods, programming and system refinement aims to increase efficiency, accuracy, and coverage. The following projects are the representatives of my contributions over the last six-month placement.

Project Data Audit - BTY ORT App

I developed the ORT data audit system with an APP to audit all battery ORT (ongoing reliability test) reports.

For the battery industry, it is important to keep track of its safety and reliability after manufacturing, which is shown in the ORT report. As there is a massive amount of data, manual checks are lack coverage (random check), efficiency (3 hours per report), and accuracy (mistakes).

Therefore, the ORT data audit system has been built to facilitate the work, which includes standardizing the format, set up the criteria for failure pattern, App developments, and implementation.

The new system was hugely improved in terms of coverage, efficiency, and accuracy. The data coverage was upgraded from 30% to 100%. The new system saves 100 working hours per month. The process became completely atomized.

Project Server Study

I identified and evaluated different server solutions for data collection, data analysis, and interaction functions.

The server is quite important for data transmission, storage, and analysis, while the current situations are Box which only provides sharing and storage functions. Therefore, Analysis of Self-built Server, Mac mini, and AWS research has been conducted and evaluated.

Throughout the research, different viable solutions have been validated and compared base on different criteria based on cost, mobility, and functionalities. It has been shown that all the solutions would be viable to transmit and store the files, pictures, and video with the most effective structure for further edit, review, and analysis, while AWS would be the most suitable solution [details in the following paragraph]

As one of the project DRIs, I would engage in the structure setups and developments of the server to facilitate all LOBs' work in the following few months.

Project Tableau - Resource system

I designed, standardized, and developed the resource system to transform, manage and visualize Cross- LOB auditors’ KPIs.

Human resource management is essential in every organization, while the evaluation of human resources is quite challenging for a Cross-LOB team because of the variety of people. To collect and evaluate the KPIs, I collaborated with colleagues to standardize the criteria, created a user-friendly interface, transformed the data, and visualize the data to help better evaluate the staffing condition resource. By considering the KPIs (including attendance and coverage), managers and DRIs could better understand and manage the resource to make the best use of the limited people resource.

The system has been online and implemented. However, due to the information security code, data would not be allowed for presentation, technical aspects would be detailed in the following paragraph. [All the members of our team use this system to review the data and KPIs]


The culture at Apple promotes development in liberal arts and technology innovation. As a result, it is a great place for pioneers and adventurers, which provides abundant resources to game-changing opportunities. I very much enjoyed this placement and even applied for an internship extension after my term ended.

If you are a DE3 student who wants an unforgettable working experience and comprehensive growth in skillsets, this placement would be great for you.