Monday, December 11, 2017

Guns Across State Lines

New Jersey has some of the most restrictive firearm laws in the country. Unfortunately for New Jersey most of the other 49 states aren't so fussy about selling guns. That might be why 79% of guns in New Jersey recovered and traced by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were bought out of state.

Axios has mapped the ATF's Firearms Trace Data - 2016 to show the top ten out of state sources for firearms for each U.S. state. The interactive flow map in How guns move across state lines visualizes the top ten out of state sources for recovered and traced guns in each state. If you hover over a state you can see how many guns were traced by the ATF in that state in 2016. You can also see the percentage which were originally purchased out of state and the ten states where the most guns were originally purchased.

If you want to make your own interactive flow map then you might be interested in Sarah Bellum's Canvas Flowmap Layer for ArcGIS or the Leaflet.Canvas-Flowmap-Layer.

The Geography of Long Life

Female babies born in the UK this year can expect to live until they are 85.8 years old. If they are male then they can hope to live until they are 82.3 years old. However a new born's life expectancy can vary a lot depending on where they live in the country.

The UK's Office for National Statistics has released information on the Health State Life Expectancies 2014 to 2016, which examines life expectancy in each area of the UK. This ONS report includes two interactive maps; one visualizing life expectancy in each local area in the UK and the other showing the gain in life expectancy in each local area since 2001-2003.

Healthy life expectancy at birth can vary across local areas of the UK by 18 years. The best places to live if you want a long healthy life is Richmond upon Thames if you are male (69.9 years) and the Orkney Islands if you are female (73.0 years). The worst places to live are Dundee City for males (54.3 years) and Manchester for females (54.6 years).

Sunday, December 10, 2017

The First #uksnow of Winter

It's snowing! There's nothing quite like the excitement of waking to the first snow of winter, grabbing your phone and visiting the #uksnow Map.

The #uksnow Map maps the location of snow in the UK based on the number of tweets that mention snow. To add snow to the map you just need to include the hashtag '#uksnow' in a Twitter message and a UK postcode. You should also rank the amount of snow out out of ten (where 0/10 = no snow and 10/10 = a blizzard).

The #uksnow Map includes an option to view all the photos of snow that have been posted on Twitter. Just click on the photo icon attached to the Twitter sidebar and thumbnails of the photos will appear in the sidebar. Just click on any of the thumbnails to view the image in full-size.

Now where did I put put my sledge?

Saturday, December 09, 2017

Trees of Edinburgh

The Edinburgh Tree Map uses data from a number of sources to map Edinburgh's trees. The map uses colored map markers to show the locations of the city's trees by species.

Using the map menu it is possible to view individual tree species separately on the map or to view all species at once. If you select a tree on the map you can view its Google Maps' Street View image and details about the tree's height and age. Each tree also has its own unique URL (click on a tree to get its link), which means you can share a link to any tree on the map.

The Edinburgh Tree Map was built using Leaflet.js and the Carto Maps API. If you don't want to build your own map and database then you can create a tree map with OpenTreeMap, a paid service which was used to create the Los Angeles and San Francisco tree maps (linked below)

Other Tree Maps:

San Francisco
New York
Los Angeles
Madison, Wisconsin

Friday, December 08, 2017

The Most Fragile Cities Around the World

Three of the most at risk cities in the world, Mogadishu, Kismaayo, and Merca, are in Somalia. At the opposite end of the scale Canada, Japan and Australia are home to some of the least at risk cities.

Fragile Cities is an interactive map which allows you to explore the fragility of 2,100 cities around the world. The Fragile Cities project ranks cities using 11 different metrics, which consider areas such as income inequality, natural & man-made risks and access to services.

If you select a city on the map you can view its Fragile Cities fragility rank. You can also view how it ranks under all 11 of the fragility metrics. The map includes a number of themed map visualizations which provide a closer view of the fragility hot-spots around the world. The slide control at the bottom of the map also allows you to view the cities' fragility ranks for every year since 2000.

The Best Transit Networks in America

New York has the best transit network for commuters. San Francisco comes in a close second. However the transit networks in Cincinnati and Charlotte showed the most improvement in the last year in terms of providing the greatest increases in access to jobs by transit

Every year the Accessibility Observatory at the University of Minnesota ranks the most populated towns and cities in the United States according to how well they connect workers with jobs via transit. Essentially the rankings are based on how many jobs can be reached by employees in a given time.

This year’s report Access Across America: Transit 2016 shows the rankings for each city, listing the cities in order of the greatest job accessibility by transit. It also lists the cities which have shown the best year-on-year improvement. These are the cities with the greatest increases in job accessibility by transit.

The report is accompanied by a series of interactive maps which visualize the spatial patterns of accessibility within each city. For each city an interactive heat map show the number of jobs accessible in each census block area within 30 minutes (on public transit) between 7:00 and 9:00 am.

Town vs Country

German newspaper Zeit has noticed a divide in attitudes in many western countries between their rural and urban communities. This divide in attitudes was seen clearly in the last presidential election in the USA and in the UK's Brexit referendum. In both these cases there were clear differences between the way urban and rural communities voted.

Zeit Online therefore decided to find out if there was this same urban-rural split in attitudes in Germany. In Diving into Urban-Rural Prejudice the newspaper first set out to discover how many Germans live in the countryside and how many in towns and cities. They discovered that "almost 70 percent of all Germans live in places with a population of less than 100,000". Zeit has visualized this answer in a dot map and bar graph, which shows the percentage of Germans living in different sized communities.

In the rest of the article Zeit explores the attitudes of urban and rural communities to a number of social and political questions to discover if there really is a difference in attitudes between town and country. The newspaper discovered a number of areas where there are clear differences in social and political attitudes. It also discovered that some of these seem to have grown in recent years (perhaps in response to Germany's acceptance of a large number of refugees).

Thursday, December 07, 2017

Southern California Fires Maps

Two fires erupted overnight in Southern California. The Thomas fire in Ventura County has already burned 90,000 acres and threatens communities both on the coast and inland. The Creek fire is burning near Sylmar and has prompted officials to evacuate more than 8,000 homes. Authorities say that the fire may not be fully contained for two to three weeks.

Esri's Ventura Wildfires map displays active fire incidents and situation reports from the National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC) database. The map also includes the MODIS thermal layer. This uses the MODIS satellite detection system to show the location of hot spots that could be potential fire locations, as detected by MODIS in the last 24 hours.

You can also view the same information on Esri's US Wildfire Activity Public Information Map. This second map covers the whole of the United States, while the first map is concentrating on the current active fires in Southern California. The US Wildfire Activity Public Information Map visualizes US wildfire locations, perimeters, fire potential areas, global burn areas, wind conditions, and precipitation using a variety of different official sources. This map also includes news & media concerning wildfire activity taken from social media.

A Journey Along a Greenland River

The New York Times wants to take you on a journey down a Greenland river. A journey which helps explain how melting ice sheets can cause a rise in global sea levels. In Greenland Melts, Where's the Water Going? the NYT uses drone photos of Greenland to help explain how meltwater rivers flow through the ice sheets and into the sea.

As you scroll through the story map you are taken on a journey along a Greenland river. On this journey you will experience how meltwater from Greenland's ice collects and drains to form rivers. You will see how these rivers carve a path through the ice sheet and how the rivers eventually drain into the ocean and contribute to rising sea levels.

After you have finished this journey along a Greenland river the New York Times discusses the importance of new research which suggests that the ice sheets retain some of the meltwater from melting ice sheets. This new discovery should help improve climate scientists' understanding of rising sea levels and help to refine our climate models.

You may also like:

Sea Level Rise Viewer - NOAA's interactive map models how different extents of sea level rise will impact coastal areas in the USA up to the year 2100.
Rising Seas - a map which allows you to explore data from 500 sea level meters around the world which have been measuring sea levels since 1933.
Shrinking Glaciers Around the World - a collection of maps tracking how glaciers are shrinking across the globe

Wednesday, December 06, 2017

Mapping Rent in L.A.

The Los Angeles Times has mapped out Where You Can Afford to Rent in California. Using the newspaper's new interactive map you can view all the zip-codes in the state where you can afford to live based on your annual salary.

The L.A. Times' affordable rent map includes a slide tool which allows you to enter the amount of money you can spend on rent a month. After you have entered how much rent you wish to pay the map automatically updates to show where you can afford to rent. Each zip-code area is colored by affordability, based on the rental listings on Zillow.

You can also enter your salary into the tool. If you enter your salary then the map also tells you what percentage of your wage is being spent on rent. The L.A. Times suggests that "you spend no more than 30% of your gross income on rent and utilities".

Near Collisions in New York

Computer vision specialists Mobileye equipped City of New York vehicles with cameras which are able to detect the locations of pedestrians. Mobileye was then able to use these cameras to plot when and where City vehicles were in "near-collision events with pedestrians".

Mobileye has now teamed up with Esri to map this data in order to discover patterns and spatial trends in these near-collisions. The Mobileye and Esri story map introduces you to the project, explains some of the discoveries made into where & when near-collisions happened and also allows you to explore the mapped data for yourself.

If you scroll through to the end of the Mobileye and Esri map you will find links to two other maps, a Point, hex bin, and street map and a Time of day and heading map.The first of these maps uses hex bins to visualize the number of near-collisions on New York's streets. It also provides a breakdown of the number of collisions by time of day for each location. The second map uses colored markers to show at what time of day the most collisions occurred at each location.

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Sanitation in the Rohingya Refugee Camps

The refugee camps in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh are having to cope with hundreds of thousands Rohingya, fleeing religious persecution in Myanmar. The incredible overcrowding in the camps has led to conditions of poor sanitation and limited health care. Reuters has undertaken analysis of satellite photos of the camps to assess the use of latrines and water pumps in the camps and how their distribution and use might effect the well-being of those living there.

In The Rohingya Crisis: Life in the Camps Reuters has used recent satellite imagery to explore the number and placement of latrines, makeshift latrines, open defecation areas and water pumps. The news agency has identified those latrines which are too near or too far from refugee households. It has also identified makeshift latrines and open defecation areas, which have been built by the refugees themselves. Many of these are located in unsafe areas or are too shallow and therefore pose a risk of contaminating water pumps.

As more and more desperate refugees arrive from Myanmar the Kutupalong refugee camp grows in size everyday. The AFP news agency reports that it is set to house 800,000 people, which would make it the largest refugee camp in the world.

The AFP has interviewed a number of refugees who now live in the Kutupalong refugee camp. You can read their stories on the KFP's Kutupalong: Rohingyas Hit Dead End interactive map. The map uses a recent satellite image of the camp as the base-map for these refugee stories. The use of a satellite image is very effective in conveying the sheer size of the Kutpalong camp. The numbered markers on the map provide access to the refugees interviewed by the KFP. You can read these stories simply by selecting the markers on the map.

The Halifax Explosion

100 years ago tomorrow, on the morning of 6 December 1917, a French cargo ship carrying high explosives crashed into a Norwegian ship in Halifax Harbour in Canada. The resulting massive explosion killed 2,000 people in Halifax, injured at least 9000 more and destroyed every building within a 1.6 mile radius (over 12,000 in total).

CBC Canada has created an incredible 360 degree video which recreates the collision of the two ships and the explosion which led to the loss of thousands of Canadian lives. The video shows an animated 3d model of Halifax Harbour, the town on the shore and the SS Mont-Blanc and SS Imo. As the video replays the collision you can pan the camera around and explore the complete scene in 360 degrees.

As well as this 360 degree recreation of the explosion CBC Canada has mapped the damage the explosion caused to the town of Halifax. A City Destroyed: 100 Years After the Halifax Explosion includes a map showing the buildings burned, collapsed and wrecked. In Part Two of this web documentary you can also explore an interactive 3d model of Halifax. This model includes the damaged and destroyed buildings. It also includes a number of map markers which you can select to read about some of the victims and survivors of the Halifax explosion.

You can learn more about the individuals killed in the Halifax Explosion in Global News' interactive map of Halifax. The interactive map in The Halifax Explosion killed nearly 2,000 people. Here is where most of them lived shows many of the houses in Halifax where people lost their lives.

The numbered markers show the number of victims in each house. If you select a marker on the map you can view the names of the people who died in that home. You can even click those names to read the details about the individual which were entered in the Halifax Explosion Death Registration Book.

Global News has also created a Children's Map, which maps the homes where 437 victims who were 12 or under died. Again you can click on the names of the victims to read the details entered into the Death Registration Book.

Monday, December 04, 2017

Israeli Settlements in the Westbank

The Settlements and Solutions Project maps the locations and history of Israeli settlements in the West Bank. The map is designed to help further understanding of the political and territorial conflicts in the West Bank and of some of the 'Land Swap' scenarios which have been proposed in peace negotiations.

The 'Green Line' on the map is the armistice line drawn up after the 1948 Arab-Israeli war. This was the agreed border between Jordan and Israel until 1967. The red line is the West Bank Security Barrier, a physical barrier that Israel has been building since 2002. Israeli settlements in the West Bank are marked on the map in blue and Palestinian communities are shown in yellow.

You can click on the colored Israeli settlements and the Palestinian communities to view details about the population living in each area. The information provided for each Israeli settlement includes details about what year the settlement was founded, the number of buildings constructed and even information about how the people have voted in Israeli elections.

The map also includes visualizations of various Land Swap proposals. These show on the map territories which could be swapped between Israel and the Palestinians in proposed solutions to the problems in the West Bank. This includes Land Swap suggestions made in the 2008 Abbas-Olmert negotiations and in the Geneva Accord.

Macrostrat's Geologic Map of the World

The English geologist William Smith is credited with creating the first nationwide geological map. A geologic map reveals the distribution of geological features such as rock units or geologic strata. Smith's beautiful 1815 map visualized Britain's geological types using different colors for different types of geological feature (you can view interactive versions of William Smith's geological maps of England, Scotland & Wales at William Smith's Maps).

Macrostrat is a collaborative platform for geological data exploration and integration. They claim to have the world's largest geologic map database. Their interactive Geologic Map allows you to explore the geology of the whole world. If you click on the map you can view information on the age, lithology and geologic strata at your selected location. The Macrostrat Geologic Map also includes an option to view elevation profiles. If you select elevation profile from the map menu you can draw a line between any two points on the map to view an elevation chart beneath the map.

A Literary Tour of Rome

The Morgan Library and Museum has been inspired by August Hare's 1870 guidebook 'Walks in Rome' to create their own interactive map of the eternal city. Hare's original guide to Rome included a wealth of literary quotations about the city's magnificent ancient buildings and monuments. The Morgan Library and Museum's City of the Soul, similarly explores how Rome provided the inspiration for many nineteenth century authors and poets.

The interactive City of the Soul map was created for the museum’s exhibition on Rome and the Romantics.The City of the Soul allows you to explore Rome through the literary insights of a number of nineteenth century writers. If you select one of the city's famous locations on the map you can read from a selection of literary works which were inspired by the chosen building or monument.

The basemap used for the City of the Soul is Paul-Marie Letarouilly’s 1841 city plan. If you like Letarouilly's plan of Rome then you might also enjoy this fully interactive version of Lanciani's Forma Urbis Romae. At the turn of the 20th Century Italian archaeologist Rodolfo Lanciani undertook the task of creating a huge detailed map of Rome. A map which would visualize when different parts of the city were built.

Lanciani’s Forma Urbis Romae is color codded to show the different historical epochs when different areas of Rome were built. On the map ancient and medieval Rome is shown in black, early modern Rome in red and the modern city (to Lanciani) is shown in blue.

Saturday, December 02, 2017

1000 Years of London History

Layers of London wants to map the history of London from the time of the Romans right through to the modern day. That is a lot of history. So it needs your help.

Layers of London is already working with a number of partners, including the British Library, Historic England, The National Archives, London Metropolitan Archives and the Museum of London Archaeology. However it will also be crowd-sourcing content. Anyone who has an interesting historical story to tell about a place in London can pin their story to the Layers of London map.

Layers of London is for now in a beta phase of testing. Currently when you browse Layers of London you can view two historical maps of London on the map, the Morgan map (1682) and Roque map (1746). It is also possible to view some historical aerial photos of London captured by the RAF.

The historical notes are shown on the map using map markers. These historical notes can be filtered in two ways. You can use the timeline to explore London's history by date range. You can also select to view from a number of curated and public themed 'collections'. These collections allow you to browse London's history by theme, subject matter or from a particular institution or organization.

The timeline and themed 'collections' on Layers of London reminds me a little of History Pin. This crowd-sourced map of historical photos, videos, audio recordings and memories has proved hugely successful around the world. If Layers of London can also tap into this demand for local and personal history then it could also become a successful portal of crowd-sourced history.

Friday, December 01, 2017

Mapping the Military's Pollution

The military are one of America's biggest and most prolific polluters of the environment. The United States military and its contractors are the only people in the United States still allowed to dispose of hazardous waste using highly polluting 'open burn' sites. It makes full use of this exemption.

ProPublica has been investigating the military's use of open burn sites and the potentially lethal pollution that they cause. In Open Burns, Ill Winds they examine how the military gets rid of hazardous material at a potentially huge cost to the health of people living nearby.

ProPublica has for the first time mapped all of the military's 'high' and 'medium risk' hazardous sites across the country. Bombs in Your Backyard is an interactive map which shows the location of current and former military locations which contain toxic pollutants and contaminants in the soil or water. It also shows military sites that contain explosives or discarded military munitions.

If you select a state from the drop-down menu you can view a list of the military installations in the state with the most high & medium risk sites. The map sidebar also includes a list of the number of military installations in each state with high & medium risk hazardous sites.