Saturday, December 29, 2012

Census Dot Map

I found a fun website earlier, a map that plots every resident -not residence- as a dot. There is no other information. It becomes sort of a fascinating and disorienting problem to zoom into your neighborhood with no information other than where everybody else lives. Now there is a "cheat mode" in that you can switch over to a Google map and zoom in with geographic features identified. But the first time I found Corvallis, it was purely from the Census information.

Two caveats- in my experience, the point data is very slow to load, so you'll need patience. I just switched over to other tabs and reading, then come back a few minutes after each zoom step. The other weakness of the site, in my opinion, is that I wish you could zoom in another step or two. There is a major transition in street orientation a block west of me, and at the maximum zoom possible, it can't quite be resolved.

Following are a screen capture for my little burg at maximum zoom (scaled to fit; click for full-size), and an annotated version of a few nearby, recognizable features.
It might be kind of fun to do a similar game to "Where on Google Earth:" "Where in the US Census?" But I think if the slow updating is an overall issue, it might get awfully frustrating.

Followup, 6:13 PM PST: I just went back and played with it a bit more. It's loading much more quickly than earlier. I'm begining to wonder if some of my confusion was in not recognizing when some data tiles were missing. Can you figure out where the following is from (City, State)? It's at highest zoom.

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