Saturday, December 15, 2018

Breaking Through the Bronze Ceiling


You may have heard of the Guerrilla Girls, who have been campaigning against the under representation of female artists in art galleries around the world. Back in 1989 the Guerrilla Girls surveyed all the works of art in New York's Museum of Modern Art. They discovered that less than 5% of the artworks in the Modern Art Department were by female artists. While 85% of the nudes featured in those artworks were female.

Women aren't only under represented inside art galleries. You probably won't be too surprised to hear that they are also under represented in those works of art that are displayed in public spaces. For example in Budapest there are more statues of animals than there are statues of women.

Atlatszo has analyzed all the statues that are owned and maintained by the municipality of Budapest. Of the 1,173 statues in the streets of Budapest 785 depict men. Only 150 statues depict women. A large proportion of the statues depicting men are of historical figures. Only 35 of the 1,173 statues in Budapest are of named historic women. The majority of the other statues of women are unnamed nudes. You can find out where all 150 statues depicting women are on the streets of Budapest on an interactive map in Atlatszo's Data Visualization of the Hungarian Bronze Ceiling.


Women aren't only under represented in artistic memorials. They are also under represented in the very names we give to the streets in which we live. For example an analysis of the Street Names in Vienna reveals that 4,269 streets have been named for men. Only 356 have been named for women.

Geochicas have also been investigating the under representation of women in street names. Their Las Calles de las Mujeres is an interactive map which shows all streets named for men and women in a number of Spanish and Central & South American cities. A pie chart on each city's map shows the percentage of streets named for both men and women in that city.

Mapbox has also created an interactive map showing the distribution of male and female street names in major cities across the world. According to Mapping Female versus Male Street Names if you add up all the streets in Bengaluru, Chennai, London, Mumbai, New Delhi, Paris, and San Francisco only 27.5% are named after women.

Friday, December 14, 2018

Eating the World


If everyone in the world had the same diet as an average American then the Earth would soon run out of food. What we eat is extremely important in determining the amount of land required to produce our food. Livestock takes up nearly 80% of global agricultural land, yet produces less than 20% of the world's supply of calories. If every country in the world adopted the US's meat based diet then we would need 138% of the world's current habitable land area. In other words we would be incapable of feeding ourselves.

Our World in Data has created an interactive map which shows the share of global habitable land needed for agriculture if everyone had the diet of each country. The countries colored red on the map all have diets which would be completely unsustainable if the whole world adopted the same diet.

Currently around 50% of the world's habitable land is used for agriculture (77% livestock & 23% crops). The countries colored green on the map are those with diets which if adopted worldwide would allow the world to continue using 50% (or less) of habitable land for agriculture. The countries colored yellow have diets which if copied across the globe would mean we had to increase the percentage of habitable land devoted to agriculture. This could be feasible as none of these country's diets would require more than 100% of habitable land being used for producing the world's food requirement.

Where Sharks Attack


The International Shark Attack File (ISAF) has been tracking shark attacks around the world since 1958. The ISAF is housed at the Florida Museum of Natural History and is the only scientifically-generated database that documents and monitors shark attacks on a global basis.

The ISAF has released a new Unprovoked Shark Attack Interactive Map, which allows you to browse the ISAF's historical records by location, date and by shark species. The map shows where sharks have attacked humans around the globe. It is possible to filter the shark attacks shown on the map by fatal and non-fatal attacks. In the map filters (below the map) you can click on the external link icons to learn more about the different species of shark.

The ISAF Maps & Data section of the Florida Museum of Natural History includes more interactive maps about shark attacks around the world. In this section you can view regional maps which provide more localized heat maps showing where shark attacks have occurred off the coast of different countries and regions of the world.

Exploring the Life of Maimonides


Moses ben Maimon, commonly known as Maimonides, was a medieval Jewish philosopher. He is revered as one of the most influential Torah scholars of the Middle Ages. The Israel Museum and the National Library of Israel is holding a joint exhibition on the life and works of Maimonides. It has also created an interactive map which allows you to discover more about some of the unique items being displayed in the exhibition.

In There was None Like Moses you can select individual artifacts on the map to learn more about their history and their role in the Maimonides exhibition. The map shrinks the globe down to a size that reflects the world known to Maimonides in the 12th century. The map is therefore not entirely geographically accurate.

The four cartouches in the map corners allow you to learn more about Maimonides and his work. The cartouche in the bottom left corner of the map provides a link to the Ktiv - The International Collection of Digitized Hebrew Manuscripts website of the Israel National Library, where you can view the digitized transcripts of Maimonides' works and manuscripts.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

The Racial Dot Map of Australia


voomMaps has created a series of dot maps which show the distribution of racial groups in Australia's largest cities. Race Dot Maps uses 2016 census data to plot the racial classification of each person living in each census area in 14 different Australian cities.

The colors of the dots on each map indicate the racial group of each individual. If you click on the 'Legend' button on a map you can learn which racial group each color represents. The Australian census recognizes 300 different categories for ancestry. For the purposes of the Race Dot Maps these 300 categories have been aggregated into seven racial groups. To protect anonymity the dots for the different racial groups are distributed randomly within each census tract area.


After the 2011 ABS census the City Science group at Monash University created an Indigenous Dot Map of Australia. showing the distribution of Australia's indigenous population. Every dot on this map shows an indigenous person counted in the 2011 Australian census. The map shows the spatial distribution of the 699,990 indigenous Australians counted.

Indigenous Australians make up 3% of the total Australian population. Looking at the map indigenous Australians seem to make up a larger proportion of the population in the north of the country. Apparently the Northern Territory has the largest proportion (30%) of its population who are indigenous, which appears to be borne out by the map.

The City Science group has also created a Chinese Population Dot Map of Australia. This map shows the distribution of the 866,001 Australians who self identified as Chinese in the 2011 census.

Also See

The Racial Dot Map of the USA
The Racial Dot of Brazil
The Racial Dot Map of South Africa
The Racial Dot Map of Estonia

US Average Life Expectancy


Where you live can have a huge influence on how long you can expect to live. People who live in New York's Chinatown have a life expectancy of 93.6 years. However people who live in nearby Roosevelt Island have a life expectancy of just 59 years. You can discover the average life expectancy in your neighborhood on this new interactive map from Quartz.

Quartz's Life Expectancy Map reveals the average life expectancy in nearly every US neighborhood. The map uses data from the Center for Disease Control's U.S. Small-area Life Expectancy Estimates Project, which tracks life expectancy at the census tract level. If you hover over your neighborhood on Quartz's map you will discover the average life expectancy in your census tract and how that compares to the state and national average.

The average life expectancy in the USA is falling. Between 2016 and 2017, the average life expectancy in the US fell from 78.7 to 78.6 years. The CDC blames this fall on the large increase in drug overdoses and suicides. The UK is also now experiencing a similar fall in life expectancy, while not suffering from the same scale of deaths from opiate abuse as the USA. In both the US and the UK there is obviously growing health inequality, where those who who live in more economically deprived areas can not expect to live as long as their neighbors in wealthier neighborhoods.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

The Place-Names of America


John Nelson recently noticed that navigable passages between mountains in the USA have lots of different names. Some are called passes, others are called gaps and some are even called notches, or saddles. Being a cartographer John wondered whether there could be any regional variation in the use of these names for navigable valleys. He therefore mapped out where these place-names are used in the USA and released the results in the Gap, Pass, Notch and Saddle story map.

To examine the regional variations in the words given to navigable valleys in the USA Nelson downloaded and mapped every named place from the U.S. Board of Geographic Names. The result is a fascinating map of 2.3 million place-names in America. As you scroll through the Gap, Pass, Notch and Saddle story map you are shown how place-names in the USA concentrate where humans settle along coastlines, along transportation routes and in major conurbations.

As you progress further though the Gap, Pass, Notch and Saddle story map the non-valley place-names are removed from the map. The different navigable passage place-names are then each given a different color. The result is a map which reveals the regional variations in how these passages are named throughout the USA.


If you are interested in carrying out your own toponym research John has included a link to download the huge place-name database from the U.S. Board of Geographic Names. Alternatively you could be lazy and play with Places! instead.

Places! allows you to map the relative density of place-names in different countries around the world. Using the application you can enter place-name prefixes or suffixes and view a map showing the geographic distribution of place-names containing those terms.

For example, in the USA we can enter the prefix of -Las to see where towns and cities have names starting with the Spanish word for 'the'. In the UK we can view where place-names include the suffixes -thorpe and -thwaite to see where the Vikings settled in Britain (the resulting map shows that these two place-name endings are popular throughout the area that was once known as the Danelaw, following the Viking invasions of the ninth century).

The Places! application uses OpenStreetMap for the place-name data. The application includes a number of options which allow you to adjust the size of map, circle points and an 'advanced' option which allows you to carry out 'regular expression' searches.

You can have hours of fun with Places! For example in the USA if you are interested in where Spanish plays a large part in local place-names you could also search for the distribution of the San- or Santa- prefixes. On the other hand the suffix -ville might be a good indication of where French immigrants originally settled in the USA.

Where's the Plaque?


Read the Plaque has mapped the location of over 17,000 plaques around the world. Using the Read the Plaque interactive map you can search for plaques marking historical or interesting locations around you.

As well as searching for plaques by location you can search Read the Plaque by tag or by the most recently submitted plaques. You can also select to view a random plaque from the over 17,000 recorded plaques. When you select a plaque on the map you can view its dedicated page, which includes a photo of the plaque and a transcription of the text on the plaque. A map also shows the plaque's exact location and the location of nearby plaques.

Anyone can submit a plaque to Read the Plaque by taking a photo of the plaque and marking its location on an interactive map.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

The Euler Spiral Map Projection


A Euler spiral is a curve whose curvature changes linearly with its curve length. A Euler spiral can therefore be used to create a map projection by projecting a curved globe onto a flat spiral. The interesting point for cartographers is that the more spirals used in a Euler spiral map projection the less distortion there is.

Now for the math. By cutting a sphere along a spiral with width 1 / N and flattening out the resulting shape we create a Euler spiral when N tends to the infinity. In other words we can create a map projection whose distortion tends to zero as N tends to the infinity.

If this sounds a little confusing then it might help to play with an interactive Euler spiral map. This interactive Euler Spiral Map allows you to adjust the number of spirals used in the projection by changing the thickness of the spirals. By reducing the thickness of the spirals you can increase the number of spirals used in the map projection. The more spirals you create then the less distortion in the projection.

Unfortunately for cartographers a Euler spiral map projection is not very useful for navigating with. If you are still confused then this excellent Numberphile video explains the projection far more clearer than I can:


Where You Should Worry About Earthquakes


The OpenQuake Map Viewer provides free and open-source visualizations of global earthquake hazards. Each of the Map Viewer visualizations uses the OpenQuake engine, a seismic hazard and risk calculation software, to show seismic risks & hazards and seismic exposure around the world,

Currently the OpenQuake Map Viewer provides three separate interactive Leaflet powered maps: the Global Seismic Hazard Map, the Seismic Risk Map and the Global Exposure Map. The Global Seismic Hazard Map shows the potential for seismic activity based on hazard and risk calculation models. The Seismic Risk Map visualizes the average annual cost of seismic activity around the world. The Global Exposure Map is a visualization of the built upon areas of the world.

The Global Seismic Risk Map can provide individual country seismic risk assessments. Click on a country on the Risk Map and you can view details on the annual cost of seismic activity for residential buildings, commercial buildings and  industrial buildings. You can also download the full OpenQuake profile for the selected country.

Making Play Maps for Children


Kinderkiez turns digital maps into real life play mats for children. If you are looking for a map present for a child (or for the grown-up kids in your life) then you can't do much better than these wonderful nursery mats which depict a map of any location in the world.

Using the Kinderkiez creation tool you can select any location in the world for your play mat. Once you have chosen a location Kinderkiez combines real geodata with the amazing illustrations of children’s book author Laura Bednarski to create a unique map designed for young children. You can also customize the look of your map by selecting your own favorite Bednarski illustrations and adding them to any location on the map.

When you are happy with your map you can go ahead and order your personalized nursery map. The finished product has a durable surface and a slip-proof latex back. The mat is also washable at 30°C.

The Kinderkiez nursery play map not only provides a colorful and safe surface on which children can play, it is also great for learning. It can be used to teach kids the way to school and impart important facts about road safety. Alternatively it can just be used as a great surface to play with your favorite toy cars.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Where is the News?


Forbes has carried out an analysis of the Television News Archive to create a series of maps showing which areas of the world have featured in the news programs of some of the major television networks. The Forbes article Mapping a Decade of Television News includes maps showing the coverage around the world of the BBC, CNN, Fox News and MSNBC.

Unfortunately the article only has static maps which does make them a little difficult to read and compare. However these maps are PNG images which means you can click on them and view them in full-screen mode. Personally I can't make out a huge difference in the global coverage of the different television news channels. The obvious major difference is that the BBC has much more UK news than the American stations and the American news channels cover American news more than the BBC.

Overall there seems to be a lot of agreement about where the major news stories are around the world. At the end of the article there are two videos of animated maps showing where the featured news channels have focused their attention around the world over time. These animated maps show the focus of the news channels traveling around the world responding to global events and then moving elsewhere as the world's attention moves on.

The World's Population Pyramids


Earlier this year The Pudding created an impressive interactive map which visualized the world's population in 3D. The Pudding's Human Terrain interactive map shows population density across the globe using 3D population pyramids. The taller a pyramid block on The Pudding map then the more people live there.

The Pudding has now used its own map to explore in more detail the pattern of population density around the world. In Population Mountains The Pudding examines how unevenly the world is populated and how population density can take different forms in different parts of the world.

For example The Pudding compares the pyramid population maps of some European cities to Kinshasa, DRC. In Kinshasa poor transportation infrastructure has led to a densely populated city center, whereas European cities tend to have less densely populated centers and more densely populated suburbs. Because of poor transportation in Kinshasa the population pyramids in the city center fall sharply away, while in European cities there tends to be a more gradual slope from the center away into the suburbs.

If you don't like The Pudding's 3D visualization of the world's population then you might prefer the SEDAC Population Estimator (GPWv4). This interactive map uses NASA's Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) data to show where the world's population lives. The SEDAC Population Estimator map includes a tool to draw an area on the map to view an estimate of the population that live there.

How Religious is Europe?


Romania has the most religious population in Europe. 55% of Romanians are 'highly religious' according to a recent Pew Research Center survey. The least religious population in Europe lives in Estonia, where only 7% are highly religious.

In How Religious is Your Country? Pew Research discovered that in general Central and Eastern Europeans are more religious than Western Europeans. In Central Europe the southern mainly Roman Catholic countries of Italy, Spain and Portugal are more religious than most other Central European countries. Although Ireland, another mainly Roman Catholic country, also scores highly when compared to other Central European countries.

The Pew assessment of its religious survey of European countries is accompanied by a choropleth map which shows the level of religious belief in 34 European countries. You can mouse-over individual countries on the map to see what percentage of the country's population are highly religious. In its survey Pew looked at four measures of religious observance. These were: attending religious services at least monthly, praying at least daily, believing in God with absolute certainty and saying that religion is very important to them. Those people who scored highly on at least two of these measures have been deemed to be 'highly religious'.

Sunday, December 09, 2018

The Queensland Bushfires from Space


The United States is not the only country in the world to have suffered from record levels of wildfires this year. Last month hundreds of bushfires ravaged the Australian state of Queensland. The intensity and scale of the fires were worse than any fires previously experienced in the state.

ABC News has used satellite imagery to help show the massive areas of the state that have been affected by the fires. In From space, the ferocity of Queenland's bushfires is revealed satellite imagery from the European Space Agency’s Sentinel 2 satellite has been used to reveal the areas affected by the fires.

As you scroll through ABC's presentation the satellite imagery shows around 45,000 hectares of land which were scorched by the fires. The imagery also reveals the homes which were threatened by the fires. Most worryingly the satellite imagery shows how the bushfires penetrated the region's rainforests, an extraordinary development which has alarmed fire scientists. Rainforests usually do not burn so this development shows how extreme global warming is creating environmental conditions outside of our previous experience.

Friday, December 07, 2018

The Most Sung About Locations


New York is the most sung about city in the world. Closely followed by London, LA, Paris and Miami. Celebrity Cruises has released an interactive map which reveals the most sung about locations across the globe.

To make Music Mapped Celebrity Cruises scanned the lyrics of over 200,000 songs. These songs all appeared in the top 40 of the US Billboard Hot 100 and UK Official Singles chart since 1960. Celebrity Cruises noted every mention of a city, town, neighborhood or state which appeared in these songs. This extensive research resulted in a final data set of 2,000 songs by 896 artists with 420 different places mentioned around the world.

The size of the markers on Music Mapped reflects the number of songs which have been sung about that location. If you click on a location's marker you can discover all the songs since 1960 which have mentioned the selected place. You can even click through to listen to each of those songs on Spotify.

Thursday, December 06, 2018

Dangerous Biking in LA


An interactive map by the LAist reveals that there is almost no section of road in Los Angeles where a cyclist hasn't been injured. The L.A.-Long Beach Bike Crashes interactive map shows the location of every collision within Los Angeles and Long Beach involving bicycles from 2010-2015.

The LAist argues that with its wide, flat roads and sunny weather LA should be a wonderful place to cycle. However Bicycling Magazine has named Los Angeles America's worst city for bikes. Looking at the LAist interactive map it isn't hard to see why. The map shows that from 2010-2015 70 bicyclists were killed and 13,606 were injured while cycling on the city's roads.

The LAist point out that the city's Three Feet for Safety Act is very rarely enforced. This law requires drivers to leave at least a three foot gap when passing a cyclist. However the police have issued only 13 citations in the four years since the act became law. The LAist's conclusion is that the city needs to invest in cycling infrastructure. The best way to ensure the safety of cyclists is to create separated bike lanes so that car drivers actually are incapable of driving within three feet of a cyclist.

Global Wind & Rain


The animated interactive weather map Ventusky now has a new radar layer, which can show the levels of rainfall around the world. The Ventusky weather map offers highly accurate data about weather conditions around the world. It now offers even more accurate precipitation data across the globe.

Ventusky has been working on its new radar layer for over a year. The layer uses sources from all around the world. It includes data from nearly 200 weather radars in North America, covering the USA and Canada. It also includes data from 100 weather radars from Europe and a few dozen more radars around the globe.

On the map the radar layer shows the intensity of precipitation. This intensity of precipitation is displayed using colors ranging from blue for light precipitation to red for very heavy precipitation. Using the timeline controls, running along the bottom of the map, you can animate the radar layer to observe precipitation moving and developing over time.

The Most Densely Populated Areas in Europe


The most densely populated square kilometer in Europe is in the center of Barcelona. This square kilometer in the Sants-Montjuïc district of Barcelona is home to 53,119 people.

Dan Cookson's Hyper Density in EU maps every square kilometer in Europe with a population of over 10,000 people. Kilometer squares with a population over 10,000 are colored on the map to show their population density. Each of the colored square also has a label which shows the exact population living there according to the European Commission.

If you want to know which areas are the most densely populated in each European country then you can refer to Alasdair Rae's article on The Most Densely Populated Square Kilometre in 39 European Countries. In this post Alasdair shows a satellite view of the the most densely populated kilometer square in each European country. Each satellite image also includes a small inset map showing you where that most densely populated area is

If you are interested in areas which aren't so densely populated then you should also check out Dan's previous European population map. The EU Population 2011 by 1km Grid visualizes the number of people living in each square kilometer of the whole EU.

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

The Autocomplete Map of the USA


A few years ago autocomplete maps were very popular. Then they went away for a while. Now they are back!

Autocomplete maps show you the most searched for phrases on Google for different locations. For example if you type into Google 'why is Alaska ..' Google will list a number of auto-complete suggestions based on how most people use that question stem when searching on Google.

On Google most people use the 'why is Alaska ...' form of question to ask 'why is Alaska so cold'. Conversely the question stem 'why is Arizona ..' is most often used on Google to ask 'why is Arizona so hot'. You can find out the autocomplete suggestions for other states on The United State of Wonder interactive map.

The map shows the autocomplete suggestions for each US state for the question stems:

'Why is ... ?'
'When will ...?'
'Can ...?'


You can make your own global autocomplete maps using Map Channels' Autocomplete Maps. This tool, released in 2014, lets you enter your own question stems to create an interactive map showing the autocomplete suggestions for that question for locations around the world.

Russia's Attack on the World's Democracies


Russia seems intent on destabilizing democracies around the world. In just the last three years Russia has hacked into the servers of the Democratic Party in the USA, assassinated a person in the UK and, most recently, fired upon Ukrainian ships.

The Alliance for Securing Democracy has been tracking where and how Russia has been interfering in more than 40 countries around the world. You can explore these discoveries on the Authoritarian Interference Tracker. Click on an individual country on the Authoritarian Interference Tracker interactive map and you can view all the recorded incidents where Russia has interfered in that country's democratic process.

The Alliance for Securing Democracy categorizes Russia's interference in democracies into a number of different areas, including cyberattacks and political & social subversion. The map uses pie charts as markers to show the scale of these different categories of attacks by Russia on individual countries. The size of the pie charts are proportional to the scale of Russia's attacks on that country. If you select a country on the map you can read more about each individual incident, as listed below the map.

Building on Britain


Just under 6% of the UK is built on. More than half the land is farmland and around a third of all land is natural (heath, moorland etc). You can discover how much of your local area is built on using the BBC's new interactive map.

How Much of Your Area is Built On uses new data on UK land use, which was derived from analyzing satellite imagery. Enter your location into the BBC's interactive and you can find out how much of your local area is natural, farmland, green urban or built on. A map of your area shows which parts fall into each of these four categories of land use. You are also shown the total percentage of land in your area which is given over to each of the four categories and how that compares to the national average.

While 6% of the UK is built upon only 3.6% of America is dedicated to urban areas. You can find out about American land use in Bloomberg's Here's How America Uses its Land.


If you live outside of the UK or the USA then you can use the OSM Landuse Landcover map to get an idea of the different percentages of land use on your area. This map uses OpenStreetMap data to map land-use and show the percentage of different types of land-use around the globe.

The OSM Landuse Landcover map uses contrasting colors to show how areas have been tagged in OpenStreetMap for land-use and land-cover. If you zoom in on a location on the map you can see how different areas have been tagged for land use and land cover. A dynamic pie chart also provides an overview of the percentages of different types of land use in the current map view.

Obviously the data on the map is only as accurate and complete as the data in OpenStreetMap.

Tuesday, December 04, 2018

Discover Your 2018 Climate Twin


In the year 2080 London will experience weather which resembles the climate in Lima today. Frankfurt in Germany will be as hot as Malawi and living in Berlin will be like living in Lesotho in southern Africa.

You can find your 2080 climate twin using The Summer of 2080 Will Be This Warm interactive map. If you enter your location or click on your location on the map you can view the town or city in the world which has a climate now which is similar to the climate you can expect in your location in the year 2080. The map uses two different climate models. This allows you to find your climate twin for a global warming scenario of 4.2 degrees or 1.8 degrees.

When you search for your climate twin the map displays some details of the kind of weather experienced by your twin now (and which you can expect to experience in the year 2080). This includes the annual rainfall and the number of extreme hot and cold days.

The Flood Risk Map of England


The UK government's Long Term Flood Risk Map for England provides an overview of the chances that any location in the country will flood in any year. It shows you the chances that locations will flood in any given year from either surface water, groundwater or from rivers or the sea.

Locations are colored on the Flood Risk Map to indicate the chances that they will flood in a year. You can also click on a location on the map to view the local chances of flooding. An area that is shown as having a high risk of flooding has more than a 3.3% chance of flooding in any given year. A medium risk indicates a 1-3.3% chance of flooding and a low risk has 0.1-1% chance of flooding in any year.

The UK government can also provide a flood risk assessment for any individual property in the UK. If you enter an address into the Long Term Flood Risk Assessment you can find out the property's risk level from rivers or the sea, from surface water or the risk from groundwater flooding.

Monday, December 03, 2018

Comparing Countries by Size


Jason Davies has arranged the world's countries in order of land area. Russia, the largest country in the world, is the first country to appear on Jason's Countries by Area visualization. Luxembourg, the smallest country in the list, comes last.

The map of every country in this visualization is reproduced to scale. This means that the countries at the bottom of the visualization are very small when compared to Russia. This is presumably why Countries by Area stops at Luxembourg. Each of the countries are colored by continent. You can mouse-over the individual countries to view its size in square kilometers and its ranking in the list of countries by size.


You can make a direct comparison of the size of any two countries using the True size of interactive map. This map allows you to overlay any country in the world on top of the outline of any other country.

The True size of interactive map doesn't limit you to just two countries. Why not see how many of the smaller countries in Jason Davies list you can fit inside the outline of Russia?

Transmarine Dream


Come and explore the strange transmarine dream of Andy Woodruff's Beyond the Sea.

Back in 2016 in Beyond the Sea Andy Woodruff answered the question of what lies beyond the sea for locations around the world. He created a series of maps which showed where each continent could be seen from (if you ignore the curvature of the Earth and our imperfect eyesight) from every other continent. His maps show what lies directly across the ocean if you take into account the direction of the coastline at any given point.

Andy has now created an animated interactive map which visualizes all the locations which lie directly across the sea on one integrated map. Click on a country on the Interactive Beyond the Sea map and you can see colorful lines shoot out to show the worldwide locations that can be 'seen' if you look directly out from any point on the selected country's coastline.

The colors of the lines represent the different destination continents. The result is that if you click on a country you can watch a colorful 'firework display' of animated lines shooting out around the world. If you select the 'start fireworks' option you can actually watch the world's coastlines exploding in one global transmarine dream.

Flooding Models for the Netherlands


The University of Gronigen has released an interactive map which shows which areas of Friesland are vulnerable to storm water flooding. The Wolk Viewer map models how rain water flows through the streets after a heavy rain storm. It simulates both the flow paths of the rainwater and where standing water would accumulate. The map covers most of the Friesland area of the Netherlands.

The Wolk Viewer simulated flooding model is based on 60mm of precipitation an hour. The model is intended only for the analysis of flooding in built-up areas, which means the model only provides a reliable picture in urban areas. The map has two buttons which allow you to view the flow paths and standing water separately on the map or to view both layers together.

The flooding model shown on the map is based on a WOLK model originally developed by the Tauw engineering firm. A WOLK (CLOUDS) model is a simple flooding model which uses a digital elevation model to show how water moves from higher levels to lower levels, while filling up lower levels with water. It provides a reasonable guide to which areas are vulnerable to flooding during a heavy rain storm.

Saturday, December 01, 2018

I Know Where You Were Last Summer


If you are German the Berliner Morgenpost knows what you did last summer. At least they have a rough idea about where you spent your vacation. The newspaper has used anonymized roaming data to find out where Germans like to travel.

In Mobile Data Reveals Where Germans Were Last Summer the Berliner Morgenpost has mapped the most popular destination for German holiday makers. The most popular country for German tourists as a whole is Italy, closely followed by Austria. The map also allows you to view the most popular destinations for residents of each of Germany's states.

Proximity seems to play a large part in the popularity of different countries in the different German states. For example in Brandenberg the most popular country to visit is Poland. In Schleswig-Holstein the most visited country was Denmark. In Niedersachsen the most popular country was the Netherlands. In Rheinland-Pfalz it was Luxembourg and in Saarland it was France.

Friday, November 30, 2018

L'Eau de Pesticide


In France many groundwater aquifers have become contaminated by pesticides. These pesticides come from agriculture and also from amateur gardeners. Some of the aquifers which are now contaminated by pesticides are used for the production of drinking water.

You can discover the levels of pesticide contamination in France's groundwater aquifers using the Data Pesticides interactive map. The map allows you to monitor the levels of pesticide contamination in individual aquifers and to explore the trends of this contamination over time. The markers on the map are colored to indicate the concentration of pesticides discovered in each aquifer. You can click on the individual aquifers on the map to view the concentrations of pesticides measured in the aquifer since 2007. You can also see how these concentrations compare to the national average.

The map includes a number of filters. These allow you to visualize the concentration levels measured in aquifers in different years. They also allow you to visualize the concentration levels of different pesticide types and compounds found in aquifers throughout the country.

Mapping UK Pub Closures


There used to be four pubs within a five minute walk of my house. One pub remains. Two of them are now small supermarkets. The other has become a private residence.

My neighborhood in East London isn't different from any other part of the UK in terms of the dramatic number of public houses closing. According to the Office of National Statistics nearly 1 in 4 pubs have closed in the last 10 years. In 2008 there were around 50,000 pubs in the UK. In 2018 only about 39,000 pubs remain.

You can find out how the numbers of pubs have changed in your local area on the ONS's Change in Pub Numbers Map. This map shows the percentage change in the number of pubs in every UK local authority area. If you click on an area on the map you can discover the exact percentage change in the number of pubs in the last 10 years.

Despite the number of pub closures the ONS reports that the turnover of pubs and clubs has remained about the same since 2008. They also report that the number of jobs in pubs has risen 6% in the last 10 years. The ONS suggests that this shows that the "remaining pubs and bars appear to have soaked up the custom from those pubs that have closed down".

You can learn more about the pub trade in the UK over the last 10 years in the ONS article Economies of ale: small pubs close as chains focus on big bars. As well as the map linked above the article includes an interactive which allows you to find out how many pubs have closed in your area, how many pubs there are per 10,000 people and how this compares to the national average.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Drone Panoramas of Camp Fire


The Camp Fire was California's deadliest and most damaging wildfire in history. The fire is estimated to have caused $7.5–10 billion in damage to property. More importantly it also killed 88 people.

An interagency UAS task force, led by the Butte County Sheriff's Office, has now captured 360 degree panoramic imagery of some of the destruction caused by the Camp Fire. Licensed UAV pilots were used to capture the aerial photographs, which will be used to assist in damage assessment and to help understand how the fire spread so quickly.

You can view the 360 degree panoramas on this Mapbox Fire Panoramas map. You can also view the panoramas on Butte County's own interactive map Camp Fire Information. The Butte County map also includes video footage of some of the areas affected by the fire.

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection has released an interactive map which shows which buildings have been destroyed or damaged by the Camp Fire. The Camp Fire Structure Status map plots the latest field damage inspection reports for buildings in areas affected by the Camp Fire.

New York's Music Map


Online ticket reseller Vivid Seats has mapped out the most popular music genre and the most popular music act in each New York zipcode area. The Most Popular Music Genres in New York map colors zipcode areas to reveal each area's favorite type of music. If you mouseover an area on the map you can also see the area's favorite musical artist or group.

Vivid Seats hasn't provided any information about how they have determined the popularity of different music genres in each area. I assume the data is based on the number of tickets bought for each type of music genre through the Vivid Seats website.

Back in 2015 the Wall Street Journal used jukebox data to create a similar interactive map which showed the most popular songs in New York neighborhoods. The NYC Jukebox Heroes: Musical Map uses data from TouchTunes jukeboxes to show what were the most played songs in different New York boroughs.

If you click on a zip-code area on the WSJ interactive map you can view the top ten most played bands and the top ten played musical artists. Back in 2015 the residents of Manhattan’s East Village loved listening to Beyonce. According to Vivid Seats these days they prefer the more guitar based sounds of Radio Head. However Beyonce will be happy to hear that she is still very popular in parts of Queens and Randalls Island.

Latin music seems to have particularly loyal fans. On both maps the 11368 zipcode area in Queens reports that Romeo Santos is the most popular artist. The Racial Dot Map of America might help to explain why Latin music is so popular in certain areas of New York. I'd hate to be accused of making assumptions about the musical taste of New York neighborhoods based on racial stereotypes but the Racial Dot Map might also provide some insight into why rock is most popular in certain neighborhoods and rap/hip-hop in others.

A Toponym Map of Berwickshire


Packs of wolves once hunted in the forests of Berwickshire. The wolves have long gone but they have left their mark in the county in the name of a small stream,which is called Wolfcleugh Burn (a cleugh is a narrow gorge or chasm with high rocky sides).

The University of Glasgow's Berwickshire Place-Name Resource allows you to explore and learn more about the names of villages, towns and other locations in the Scottish Borders county of Berwickshire. The resource will be of particular interest into anyone who is interested in toponyms and the definitions and meanings of old British place-names.

The Place-Name Resource allows you to search for place-names in the county using a number of different methods. You can search for place-names alphabetically. Alternatively you can search using a string (for example entering '*hall' to find all place-names ending ....hall). You can also search using the element glossary which allows you to search by different common elements found in Berwickshire place-names.

Once you have completed a search of the Berwickshire Place-Name Resource you can view the results on an interactive map. Clicking on an individual marker on this map will open an information window providing details on the selected location. These details include its entry in the OS Name Book. If you are interested in the meaning of a place-name then the 'elements' section allows you to view a definition (where available) of any unfamiliar parts of the place-name. For example both Kimmerghame (cow's bridge) and Birgham (a settlement beside a bridge) contain derivations of 'brycg' - which means bridge.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

The Medieval Murder Map of London


London in the 14th Century was a dangerous place to be. The murder rate in early 14th century London was about 15-20 times higher than an English town with an equal sized population today. A new interactive map shows that market areas in London were particularly dangerous.

The University of Cambridge's new London Medieval Murder Map plots the locations of 142 murders which took place in the capital in late medieval London. The map uses data from the Coroner's Rolls. The coroners and their sheriffs in medieval London investigated violent deaths and published the results in the Coroner's Rolls. Nine of these Coroners' Rolls, covering the City of London, from the first half of the 14th century have survived.

The London Medieval Murder Map reveals that around 68% of homicides in medieval London occurred in public commercial spaces, such as markets and squares. There are two main homicide hotspots on the map. One stretches from St Paul's to St Mary's le Bow in the Cheapside area of London. An area which was full of stall and shops. Another murder hotspot seems to radiate around Leadenhall Market.

You can filter the murders which are shown on the map by the gender of the victim, the type of murder weapon used, by date range and by crime scene (public or private spaces). Over one third of the murders were carried out using a 'long knife'. Most men in London in the 14th century would be armed in public with a sword or knife. The majority of the victims of murder on the map are men. One thing the map doesn't show is that men were also the most likely perpetrators of these crimes. 92% of the homicides shown on the map were carried out by men.

Another thing not shown by the map is when homicides most often occurred in medieval London. 31% of the murders shown on the map happened on a Sunday. The one day of the week when most people didn't have to work. 77% of the murders occurred in the evenings between the times of 5 pm and 10 pm.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Send Street View Christmas Cards


It's nearly time to send your Street View Christmas cards. To help you create your seasonal custom panoramic cards you can now use Street View Postcards -  a new creation tool from Map Channels.

Here's my finished Street View Xmas card. If you want to create your own custom made card then you can use Map Channels' Street View Postcard tool. Using Street View Postcard you can make a Christmas Card for any location on Earth, as long as it has Street View imagery on Google Maps.

Register with Map Channels and you can decorate any Street View image with your own message, with animated falling snow and other Christmas decorations. When you have finished your Street View Christmas card you can share the link to the card with your friends or you can embed it in your own website or blog.


You can also create a personalized Street View message using It's a Message. This Google Maps application helps you create and send a personal holiday greeting from your own choice of Street View.

Once you select a Street View location and add your own personal message this app creates a stylized Street View scene, with animated snow and your greeting. The app pans and zooms around your chosen Street View image, accompanied by some nice soothing Christmas related music. Once you are happy with your personal Christmas Street View scene you can send the link to your friends.

Where on Mars


Yesterday NASA successfully landed the InSight probe on the surface of Mars. (Is there) Life on Mars is an interactive map of the red planet, which has been updated to show the location where NASA's InSight robot landed on Mars. InSight has landed on the Elysium Planitia, a large, flat and featureless plain, which is close to the planet's equator and perfect for landing spacecraft. It is also the perfect location for InSight's mission to explore the planet's core.

The actual name of the robot 'InSight' is short for Interior Exploration Using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport. InSight has three main instruments. A seismometer, which will measure submartian seismic activity or Marsquakes beneath the surface of the planet. A heat probe, which will be buried 5 meters into the ground and which will measure how heat rises through the planet. Thirdly, InSight is also equipped with antennas designed to measure how much the planet wobbles on its axis. This will help to determine the size and density of the planet's core.

The (Is there) Life on Mars interactive map explores some of the questions around whether life exists on Mars. InSight will hopefully help us to answer this question as well. Earth’s rotating molten iron core generates the magnetic field that shields life from harmful radiation and stops Earth's atmosphere from shooting off into space. At some point Mars lost its magnetic field and its atmosphere. Learning more about Mars' inner core will help scientists understand how and why Mars lost its magnetic field. InSight may also help us learn more about conditions under the surface of Mars and whether life might have survived on Mars by retreating beneath the surface of the planet.

If you want to know what Mars might look like with an atmosphere then you can use the (Is there) Life on Mars map to explore a red planet which still has water. The map's Water Layer allows you to view water on the surface of Mars based on the planet's elevation data. Using this layer you can add lakes, seas and oceans to Mars and turn the red planet partly green (read the 'details' for an explanation as to why water on Mars wouldn't appear blue).

Monday, November 26, 2018

The Map of Scientific Collaboration


Olivier H. Beauchesne has created an interactive map which shows the international collaboration of scientists around the world. The map plots the connections between scientists and researchers in different cities as seen in scientific journals and papers ("for example, if a UCLA researcher published a paper with a colleague at the University of Tokyo, this would create an instance of collaboration between Los Angeles and Tokyo").

The Map of Scientific Collaboration reveals how scientists collaborate across borders around the world. As Beauchesne notes it also reveals some interesting patterns within individual countries. For example Paris seems to play a central role in French science. No matter where scientists live or work in France they all seem to collaborate with another scientist in Paris. In comparison the UK seems to have a less centralized scientific network. This is perhaps a result of the major Oxbridge universities being located outside of London.


Ironically, despite the global collaboration of scientists demonstrated in the Map of Scientific Collaboration, most people around the world won't actually be able to read the scientific papers from which the map was created. Unless they know about Sci-Hub.

Sci-Hub is an online repository of pirated scientific academic papers and articles. It allows researchers and students to access expensive pay-walled academic content. Content that is usually only available from expensive academic journal publishers. This pay-walled system can be prohibitively expensive, especially for struggling students and researchers from developing countries. It has been claimed that the popularity of Sci-Hub in countries such as India, Indonesia, Pakistan and Iran proves that Sci-Hub is providing access to scientific research to those who wouldn't otherwise be able to afford it.

In an article on the Science website, Who's Downloading Pirated Papers?, John Bohannon has created an interactive map showing where pirated scientific academic papers and articles have been downloaded from Sci-Hub around the world. In order to make the map Bohannon contacted Alexandra Elbakyan, the Sci-Hub creator, to request the geographic location of every user who has downloaded an academic paper from Sci-Hub. In order to protect the privacy of Sci-Hub users the data was aggregated to the nearest city.

The Destruction of the Amazon Rainforest


The deforestation of the Amazon rainforest in Brazil last year reached its highest rate for ten years. Nearly 8,000 sq km of rainforest was destroyed between August 2017 and July 2018. The Brazilian government says that illegal logging is to blame for the huge rise in deforestation. The future outlook for the Amazon rainforest looks to be even worse. The newly elected president, Jair Bolsonaro, has promised to lower fines for illegal logging and to reduce the power of the government's environment agency.

You can view how logging has affected the size of the rainforest on TerraBrasilis PRODES. TerraBrasilis PRODES is produced by the Brazilian National Institute for Space Research (INPE) to visualize its environmental monitoring data. Since 1998 the PRODES project has been monitoring, by satellite, deforestation in the Amazon region and has published information on the annual deforestation rates.

The interactive TerraBrasilis PRODES map allows you to view the accumulated areas of the Amazon which have been affected by deforestation between 1988 and 2012. It also allows you to view the yearly deforested areas for each separate year from 2013 to 2018. If you click on the pie chart icon on the map you can view the yearly deforestation rates in the Brazilian rainforest in a series of charts and graphs. A table view also allows you to view the annual deforestation rate in each state in the country and for Brazil as a whole.


If you are interested in the future of the Amazon rainforest then you should refer to Infoamazonia's interactive Forest Cover Through Time map. This map shows Infoamazonia's projections for the extent of the rainforest's cover up until it is almost completely destroyed (which it predicts will occur in the year 2260). Just select the date buttons above the map to view the projected forest cover for any specific year.

Illegal logging isn't the only cause of deforestation in Brazil. The Silent Forest project has been started by a team of Brazilian and foreign scientists to assess the extent and impact of forest degradation in the Amazon rainforest. As a result of this monitoring the project has released an interactive map to show Contributing Factors to Degradation in the Brazilian Amazon Rainforest. The map shows the extent to which fire, logging, hunting and fragmentation are all leading to the destruction of the rainforest in Brazil.

You can learn more about the Amazon rainforest on National Geograhic's Amazonia Under Threat. Amazonia Under Threat explores the various ecosystems which once thrived in the rainforest. It also maps the effect that people and human industry are having on the delicate ecosystems of the Amazon region.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Building a Bike Friendly Berlin


Earlier this year Berlin passed a mobility law designed to encourage safe cycling in the city. The law requires that all major and minor roads should have separated bike lanes, the creation of 100,000 parking spaces for bikes and the redesign of 30 accident hotspots every year.

In order to help facilitate safer cycling in Berlin the city has released FixMyBerlin. This interactive map is designed to inform the public about the planned cycling improvements in Berlin and to help show where it is already safe to bike in the city.

The map includes a Happy Bike Index layer which shows which roads are currently the least and most safe to cycle on. You can view the bike friendly rating of all Berlin's roads by selecting the Happy Bike Level layer on the map.

If you switch the map to the Planung view then you can view Berlin's planned cycling improvements. Different map icons are used on the map to show what stage each improvement has reached. These indicate whether the project is just in the conception stage, in the planning stage, currently being built or if the project has been completed. Users of FixMyBerlin can sign up to receive updates on any of the mapped cycling improvements. If you sign up for a project you will be kept informed every time the project is updated.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Black Friday Cyber Monday Live Shopping


Shopify's BFCM Live Map visualizes real-time sales across the world made over this weekend on the popular e-commerce platform. As you watch the BCFM Live Map customer orders are animated as great circles on a 3D globe showing you where sales are being made.

This isn't the first real-time retail tracking map I've seen. Obviously these kinds of maps don't have much real practical use, beyond marketing the companies themselves. Nevertheless they can be fun to watch for a couple of minutes. The Shopify map includes a 'Sales per minute' and 'Orders by minute' running totals which do provide an impressive overview of the number of sales made through Shopify. Updates also appear under the map with details about some of the sales being made around the world - as they happen.

Mapping the Rise of Populism


This week the Guardian newspaper has been running a series of articles exploring the rise of populism across the globe. The newspaper claims that over the last 20 years populist political parties have tripled their support in Europe.

In Revealed: one in four Europeans vote populist the Guardian has mapped the populist vote share in European national elections since 1998. Using the map's date slide control you can navigate to view the populist vote share across Europe for any year since 1998. The Guardian argues that the map shows how populism has made "inroads in western Europe’s major powerhouses in the past three years".

You can view the Guardian's full series on the rise of populism at The New Populism. The Guardian's quiz How populist are you has been particular popular among many of the people I follow on social media. The quiz tests how how left or right wing your political views are and how populist they are. It then tells you which political leaders around the world you are most similar and least similar to.