Monday, November 24, 2014

Wikipedia Heat Maps

Frankenplace is a 'thematic map search engine.' Which means that you can use the map to create instant heat-maps for a range of words based on the words' frequency in over 1.6 million articles on Wikipedia and online travel blog entries.

For example the heat map above is the result of typing 'mosque' into Frankenplace. If you enter 'mountain' instead then you will get a heat map that roughly resembles the location of mountain ranges around the world.

Frankenplace can therefore be used to get an understanding of the spatial dynamics of a topic by providing a heat map of the topic as featured in Wikipedia and travel blogs. The site can also be used as a search engine to find relevant documents that march your search query.

For example, in my search for 'mosques' I might only be interested in French mosques. I can therefore use the map to zoom in on France. If I then mouse-over Paris on the map the side-panel shows me a link to the Grand Mosque of Évry. I can even read the Wikipedia for the Grand Mosque of Évry directly from the map.

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