Friday, July 03, 2015

Deep Dream Mapping

You're probably getting bored of Deep Dream images by now. So let me introduce you to Deep Dream Mapping.

My first thought on reading about Google's Deep Dream image neural processing was to wonder how it would interpret an image of a map. So I fed Deep Dream a map of Washington DC and this is what it saw - Deep Dream Washington DC (the map was created by using the Google Maps API's groundoverlay).

To be honest the results were a little disappointing - a map doesn't seem to produce great dreams. I therefore thought it would be interesting to use Leaflet.js as a way to present a more freaky Deep Dream image. Here's my Leaflet Deep Dream. I didn't bother creating map tiles for the image.

If you do create map tiles for a Deep Dream image then Leaflet.js would be a nice way to provide a zoomable and pannable interface for your Deep Dream image.


Combine crowd-sourcing with cosmic rays & solar wind and you end up with Aurorasaurus, a new citizen science map gathering real-time data about aurora sightings around the world.

The map shows the location of Twitter posts mentioning aurora sightings. As well as showing recent reported sighting from Twitter Auroasaurus displays a pink band where auroral activity is likely to be strongest. It also includes a timeline feature, which allows you to view what the map looked like on different dates.

Registered users of Auroasaurus can get notifications when an aurora is visible in their area.

Berlin's Airbnb Streets

Airbnb vs Berlin is a wonderful data driven investigation into the popularity of Airbnb in Berlin and the possible effect it is having on affordable housing in the city.

Among the interactive maps used to illustrate the investigation is Airbnb Streets. The map highlights the streets in Berlin with more than 20 Airbnb offers and reveals that many of the properties listed on Airbnb are in popular tourist areas. In particular there is a high concentration of properties in areas that are popular with young travelers.

Another interactive map in the article visualizes the number of Airbnb listings by neighborhood. This choropleth map shows in which areas of the city more flats and rooms are offered on Airbnb. The Reuterkiez area in Neukölln is the most active neighborhood on Airbnb with 476 rooms and flats listed within only a few blocks.

A third map shows the locations of properties by the top 10 'power users' in Berlin. There is one user who lists 44 separate properties in Berlin on Airbnb. This rise in 'super users' suggests that Airbnb is being used as a business tool. It appears that more and more Airbnb listings are being rented on a commercial level by landlords exploiting the service to make higher profits from short term rentals rather than from renting out their properties to long term tenants.

Via: Visualoop

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Mapping Police Killings

So far this year 463 people have been shot dead by the police in the United States. The Washington Post has compiled (and will continue to update) a database of the victims of these police shootings.

The Post's Police Shootings interactive allows you to explore the data in a number of formats, including a timeline, cartogram and interactive map. The map view shows the locations of 413 of the shootings (50 shootings with unverified locations are not shown on the map). The map includes a number of options which allow you to filter the result by the sex, race and age of the victims.

The cartogram view shows the number of shootings (per million people) by state. Normalizing the data by population means that you can make a reasonable comparison between each state. The cartogram reveals that Oklahoma has the worst record of police shootings and that the highest state rates fall in the south and west.

Slideshows of Planet Earth

Google's Earth View Chrome extension allows you to view a beautiful aerial image from Google Earth every time you open a new tab in Google's browser. The extension has been around for a while but I just realized today that there is also a slideshow version Of Earth View that you can view in any browser and which doesn't require you to add an extension.

Google Earth View allows you to browse through a collection of some of the most beautiful images of planet Earth that can be found on Google Earth. You can navigate through the collection using the forward and back buttons but I advise you to use the 'Leanback' mode (accessed through the menu), which allows you to just sit back and watch a slideshow of the images.

The location of each image is shown on a little globe in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. If you want to view one of the aerial images on Google Maps just click on that little globe.

I you enjoy browsing through beautiful aerial images of planet Earth you can also use Chuchichechocha. Chuchichechocha is a Google Maps satellite view slideshow developed by David Schmidt. The slideshow automatically animates through a large number of beautiful images found in Google Maps.

The application includes controls to pause or to manually navigate through the images. Each image also comes with a unique URL so you can share your favorite views with your friends.

Stratocam is another nice slideshow of satellite images that can be found on Google Maps. As users watch the slideshow they can give each image a 'thumbs up' or 'thumbs down' to show whether they like the image or not.

Users can also submit their own finds by dragging and zooming the map and clicking on the camera icon to select their favorite view.

Random Airports is yet another interesting Google Maps slideshow. However this one is purely for lovers of airports. Random Airports animates through satellite views of random international airports.

If random isn't your thing then Random Airports also includes a search option so you can jump straight to the aerial view of your favorite international airport.

Another way to be transported to random locations around the world is through these Street View based applications. MapCrunchThe Secret Door, Globe Genie and Random Street View are four applications that show you a succession of random locations around the globe using Google Maps Street View.

Mapping Access to Clean Water & Sanitation

The Guardian has created a number of interactive maps visualizing the worldwide access to clean water and sanitation. The United Nation has proposed, as one of 17 new Sustainable Development Goals, that by 2030 everyone in the world should have access to safe water and sanitation.

The Guardian's maps explore the current state of clean water and sanitation across the globe. The maps include visualizations of data from the WHO/Unicef Joint Monitoring Programme, to show the current state of access to clean water and safe sanitation.

These maps show which countries have access to clean drinking water and which countries have access to improved sanitation facilities. The Guardian has also created two maps visualizing which countries met the millennium development goal of providing access to clean water and the millennium development goal on sanitation.

Are you on the GeoHipster map?

Are you a GeoHipster? If so you should be on this map.

The GeoHipster Map shows the locations of the followers of the GeoHipster Twitter account. Because this is a 'GeoHipster' map the exact locations of all GeoHipsters on the map are protected by a random component of a few hundred meters. Of course all followers of GeoHipster who set their location as 'everywhere', 'global', 'earth', 'somewhere', 'worldwide' or 'unclear' are mapped as living on the tropical paradise of Null Island.

GeoHipster is a geo-blog with a special focus on open source and open data. The blog features regular interviews with leading participants in the field of what we used to call 'neo-geography' but I guess are now calling geohipsterism.

I'm not on the map. Not that I care. I'm too cool to be a GeoHipster. I wouldn't want to be on your stupid map even if you asked me. I'm going to create my own GeoHippies Map and I can tell you now for a fact that you won't be on it.

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

O Canada

On July 1, 1867, the Constitution Act united three colonies into a single country called Canada. You can learn more about the formation of Canada and about some of the key figures in Canadian history in this Esri map of Canada's Nation Builders.

The map includes 41 pen portraits of significant individuals important to Canada's early history. The individuals are all mapped by their place of birth. The map itself is a vintage Mercator map of the world.

Each of the pen portraits on Canada's nation builders includes a link to learn more about the individual on Wikipedia.

Border Based Marker Clustering

The Food Assembly is a European organization which brings together local food producers with local consumers. The Food Assembly has created such groups throughout Europe, enabling consumers to come together and buy locally sourced food.

You can find your nearest food assembly on the Food Assembly's searchable Mapbox powered map. The map includes a really interesting marker clustering system which groups together food assemblies by region and country.

Nearly all of the existing marker clustering libraries are based on a proximity algorithm which groups together markers purely on their geographical proximity. The problem with this kind of proximity approach to marker clustering is that it ignores administrative and political borders and regions.

For example, using a proximity algorithm some markers in 'Country A' may be grouped together with markers from 'Country B' because they are geographically close, while other markers in 'Country A' may be clustered with markers in 'Country C' because they are closer geographically to 'Country C' than other markers in 'Country A'.

Map users however are used to country and regional borders. A marker clustering solution which groups makers based on country and regional borders may seem more natural to the user. In such a marker clustering system all the markers in 'Country A' will be in one cluster, all the markers in 'Country B' will be in a separate cluster and all 'Country C' markers will be in another. Place these clusters at the centroid of each respective country and the user can clearly tell which markers are in which country.

The Food Assembly has developed such a marker clustering solution, clustering markers based on administrative and political borders and regions. At the lowest zoom levels the map clusters markers by country. Zoom in on the map and the markers then become clustered by region. Only when you really zoom in on the map does the Food Assembly switch to a proximity algorithm which ignores administrative borders.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Mapping LA's Broken Sidewalks

The Los Angeles Times has mapped LA's broken sidewalks. Over the last five years the city's 311 service request system has received 19,000 sidewalk complaints. The LA Times has mapped them all.

The Broken Sidewalks map colors the city's roads by the number of sidewalk complaints filed on each section of road. You can mouse-over the roads to view exactly how many sidewalk service requests were made for the selected block. If you zoom out you can view a choropleth map showing the number of complaints filed by neighborhood.

The LA Times reports that only about in about 60% of reported cases were repairs made to the broken sidewalks.