February, 2013 Archives

bixiHow did you celebrate International Open Data Day? Bixi Montreal contributed by releasing a summary of data for a single day, at dataholic.ca/odd/bixiday.xlsx. This is the first time the public has gotten access to their data. I added them to my collection, and can now offer the Bixi Montreal Trip Visualizer.

Their data included two matrices of station-to-station trip totals, for the AM and the PM. To simplify the data, my visualizer combines the two. I hope to add a feature later on to differentiate between the two data sets. I do not know which day the data is from.

Montreal has 410 bikesharing stations, making it one of the largest systems in the world. By comparison, Capital Bikeshare in the DC metropolitan area has 199 stations, and is the largest in the USA (until New York City’s system makes its debut). Montreal was the first city to use the Bixi system, starting in May 2009. Bixi now provides bikesharing facilities for 10 cities, including the other 3 that I’ve done trip visualizers for: Washington, DC, Boston, and Minneapolis-St Paul. » Continue Reading…

arlingtonArlington County has released its own set of bicycle accident data. There were 227 incidents recorded from January 1, 2010 to December 31, 2012 (though the first recorded accident wasn’t until March 1, 2010). That’s 6.3 reported incidents a month. I’ve made a map for them, the Arlington Bicycle Accidents Stat Mapper. It’s the same program as the DC Bicycle Accidents Stat Mapper.

I did not combine the two jurisdictions because the date ranges are different, and because the data formats were different.

Arlington’s map has 174 locations. The spot with the most accidents was Lee Highway at Fort Myer Dr, with 8 accidents recorded there. Clicking on a pin will show detailed information for all of the incidents at that location.

The source data has an “at” street and a “cross” street for each record. Some of them have a “landmark” field which is often used to describe the block number, and another field (3, actually, which I’ve combined) is sometimes used to describe the distance from the intersection. » Continue Reading…

Presidents Day weekend brought one of the first big political rallies to President Obama’s second term. The Forward on Climate Rally was a joint project of the Sierra Club and 350.org, with a primary goal of stopping the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. The weather was cold but clear; good enough for thousands of protesters to march around the White House. Here are a few photos from the event:

Forward on Climate rally
» Continue Reading…

Calling Environmentalists to Action

In the tradition of keeping Clarendon weird, the 15th Annual Clarendon Mardi Gras Parade brought its goofy revelry to Wilson Boulevard. Sponsored by the Clarendon Alliance, the parade is more clean civic pride than drunken debauchery. The spirit of New Orleans was mostly in the copious amount of plastic beads thrown out. Students from Louisiana State University had by far the best costumes. None of the cars and trucks were really decorated as floats, with one grand exception: the entry from Countdown to Yuri’s Night, the organizer of the annual Yuri’s Night party. Their giant robot head was the highlight of the parade. Check out the photos below:

Clarendon Mardi Gras Parade
One of the floats tossing out beads
» Continue Reading…

2013 Clarendon Mardi Gras Parade

Bicycle Counts Stat MapperLast June, DDOT and MWCOG counted bicycle traffic over an 8-hour period in 48 locations. I got a copy of the results, and converted the spreadsheet into a map. The Bicycle Counts Stat Mapper uses the same interface I created for the Bicycle Accidents Stat Mapper, but with a few new features added.

A total of 21,930 cyclists were counted. They also recorded the rider’s sex, whether they were on a sidewalk, whether they were wearing a helmet, and whether they were riding a Capital Bikeshare bike: 75% were male, 27% were on a sidewalk, 69% wore helmets, 5% were on CaBi.

The place with the most bike traffic was the 15th St cycle track, measured north of P St. It got just under 200 cyclists per hour (198.8 to be exact). Its busiest hour saw 355 cyclists go through. » Continue Reading…

statmapperWhen TheWashCycle blog reported on the Bicycle Crash Study 2010-2012, I was surprised to see the report didn’t include a map. So, I created a tool to view a map of the accident locations: the Stat Mapper.

I got a copy of the source data from DDOT. It covers January 6, 2010 to March 31, 2012. That period has 1,087 accidents in 744 locations. The report lists locations using text descriptions of the intersections. To convert into latitude & longitude coordinates for the map, I relied on Google’s geocoder. These results aren’t always accurate, especially if the text isn’t easily understood, like one accident that was recorded at “FBI:INTERSTATE 295” (the geocoder placed that at the center of the city, but I manually moved it to 3rd & E NW).

By default the map shows a pin at every accident location. When you hover over a pin the header will show the total number of accidents there, as well as the total number of fatalities and injuries, and the number of vehicles and bicycles involved. You can click on the pin to get a full listing of all the accidents at that spot. The darker the pin, the more accidents at that location. The spot with the most accidents, nine, was at 14th & U NW. » Continue Reading…

Over a dozen drag queens squeezed into the Duplex Diner for the Valentine’s Day is a Drag event. It’s another annual fundraiser from the “ladies” of the Dupont Social Club (better known for the Miss Adams Morgan pageant). This year’s beneficiary was The Trevor Project. Love was in the air and meatloaf on the tables. Enjoy the photos below:

Valentine's Day is a Drag
Sierra Braxton
» Continue Reading…

Wigging Out for Valentine’s

It used to be the way to celebrate Valentine’s Day was to buy a Hallmark card and a box of chocolates, and call it a day. Well, add running around town in your underwear to the list. The folks at Cupid’s Undie Run have turned this charity fundraiser into the highlight of the weekend before Valentine’s. This was the forth year hordes of semi-naked runners raced around Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. The short route streaked past the United States Capitol building and the Supreme Court. Runners (and walkers) were boldly asserting their rights to bare arms, bare legs, bare chests, etc etc. Lucky tourists got their routines perked up by the hundreds of folks dressed up in red and pink. A few photos below:

Pyramid by the Capitol
» Continue Reading…

2013 Cupid’s Undie Run

orangelineThe Metro Trip Visualizer lets you study Metro traffic patterns, plotting results on a map. Look familiar? It’s the same tool I’ve used for the CaBi Trip Visualizer, the Hubway Trip Visualizer, and the Nice Ride Trip Visualizer. They’ve all been consolidated into a single interface.

While Metro doesn’t regularly post trip history data, they did release a chunk via their PlanItMetro blog: Data Download: Metrorail Ridership by Origin and Destination. The data is actually just a summary of the trip history data, giving station-to-station totals. Though they divide the data by time periods (AM peak, midday, PM peak, evening, and late-night peak), my tool considers only the totals. » Continue Reading…

Metro Trips Visualized

twomapsWhen you visualize geographic data, it helps to have a map for a background. To coordinate the map to your data, you need the latitudes and longitudes of the map’s boundaries. And to maximize the space, the map should be padded in only one direction, to make your boundaries fit the shape of the image. There are a few obstacles with getting the perfect map. To make it easier to find the perfect map, I’ve created a tool you can use to specify the perfect bounding box and image size.

I want to be able to specify two things:

  • The bounding box (north, south, east, west)
  • The image size (width and height, in pixels)

In addition to getting a map in return, I also need to know what the result’s bounding box is. It will probably be bigger than what I requested, unless the image size has the exact same ratio as my bounding box. That’s highly unlikely. To avoid stretching either the latitudes or longitudes, I need to add padding to either the left and right, or the top and bottom. Once the padding is added, the bounding box will grow either horizontally or vertically. » Continue Reading…

Made-to-Order Mapmaking