Mapping

5 posts
Choosing color palettes for choropleth maps

Choropleth maps, the ones where regions are filled with colors based on data, grow easier to make. However, choosing colors, the number of colors, and the breakpoints is often less straightforward, because the answer is always context-specific. Lisa Charlotte Rost, now at Datawrapper, provides a rundown of the decision process. The explanation is in the context of the Datawrapper tool, but you can easily apply the logic to your own...

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Visualizing North Korea’s Missile Launches

Despite international objections, North Korea has launched four ballistic missiles in the last week, including one that flew over Japan, raising regional tensions about the rogue state’s weapons development even higher. For those of us who live in South Korea, such provocations have become commonplace, especially since the North’s new leader, Kim Jong Un, took over after his father’s death in late 2011. They interrupt Sunday breakfasts or even national...

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Teaching Data Journalism In China

I’ve just returned from a week in China, teaching data journalism to students from all over the country at Fudan University (sponsored by the U.S. China Education Trust). Helped by a fabulous co-instructor, Yan Lu, we taught them about acquiring data, data wrangling, storytelling, visualization, SQL, mapping, news apps and more. The students, working journalists and professors, were quite impressive. Working in groups, they created several data-driven projects of their...

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Adjusting map data with Mapshaper

Map making is a finicky challenge where oftentimes your map data — points, lines, and polygons — must align just right with your external data that exists as a CSV file or related. Mapshaper is an online tool that helps you massage your geographic data to where it needs to be. The online application has been around for a while, but I only recently used it, and it’s kind of...

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FiveThirtyEight Chat On Maps: Turning The “Big” States Blue

The folks at FiveThirtyEight had a fun data visualization discussion during their regular election chat this week, about whether Hillary Clinton should focus on ensuring victory next month or spending more money in “red” states to expand her Electoral College map. Nate Silver chimes in by alluding to the classic discussion about how choropleth maps of the United States in a political context can distort a story. That’s because geographically...

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New Poverty Data Show Improving Economic Conditions in States

Economic conditions continue to improve in America’s states, with many showing significant declines in their poverty rates, according to new survey data released recently by the U.S. Census Bureau. About 14.7 percent of the American population had incomes last year that were below their respective poverty levels, which vary depending on household size — a significant decline from 2014. Data in the states reflect that improvement. First, here’s how the...

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Mapping D.C. Building Heights

I posted yesterday about residential buildings in Seoul and South Korea. Here’s a quick look at the buildings in my previous city, Washington, D.C. Darker shades represent taller buildings:

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Mapping South Korea’s Foreigners

Note: My family last year relocated to Seoul, where my wife is working as a foreign correspondent for NPR. This post is the first in an occasional series profiling the peninsula’s demographics and politics. This week I looked at the population of foreign residents in South Korea, charting national origin and geographic distribution around the country. But if you don’t live here (and even if you do) that geography can be quite difficult to...

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Charting Clinton’s Sizable Lead in Votes

To some Bernie Sanders supporters, the Democratic presidential race must seem close. Their candidate, after all, has essentially split victories with Hillary Clinton in the more than 30 election primaries and caucuses since the process began in February — including several in a row recently. Clinton, their thinking goes, may have a lead in pledged delegates for the nomination, but her sizable and (for now) critical lead among party leaders...

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Mapping GOP Campaign Cash by Density

The GOP presidential candidates collectively have raised more than $300 million in this election cycle, according to Federal Election Commission data. Here’s a quick look at where the several of those candidates — Jeb Bush, Ben Carson, Chris Christie, Ted Cruz, John Kasich, Marco Rubio and Donald Trump — collected the money. Each dot on the maps below represents at least $5,000 raised by zip code. The dots in each place are assigned randomly...

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