Monday, October 27, 2008

IED events in Afghanistan & Iraq from April 2007 to March 2008

View in Google Earth


Green = 0 fatalities
Yellow = 1-30 fatalities
Red = 30+ fatalities

Use the time slider to compare month to month.

The WITS site ( Worldwide Incident Tracking System ) has the data in Year-Month format as well as MM/DD/YYYY format. I think an exhibit of daily incidents would be more compelling but I am still working on a good way to convert M/D/YYYY to YYYY-MM-DD format.

While I applaud Off The Map for posting some of this data, I believe comparing the percent change of violent incidents in Iraq to those in Afghanistan is an apples to oranges comparison. While it is disturbing to see violence rise in the latter, it has significantly less violence than the former.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Animated Historical Political Boundaries Version 1

View in Google Earth

Forgive me if this has been done already. I found a bunch of shapefiles for historical political boundaries on and exported them all to KML with TimeSpans.

I can not vouch for the accuracy of the boundaries or lack thereof in terms of place and time, but I think it looks interesting and would like some feedback. There seem to me to be several historical boundaries unaccounted for in this data set.

I used Google's default yellow lines so it probably looks best with many of GE's default layers off. After I showed it to somebody they suggested I use a colored fill for some of them so I tried it on one as you can see in the animated gif above. Thought about adding clickable placemarks for perhaps relevant wikipedia articles or something, but have not yet attempted that.

I like the idea of combining geography and history. A few ideas that interested me during this export:

Viewing various historical data with the Google Earth API and time slider such as:

changes in assessor/county/tax parcel data and geography

changes in municipal, state, and federal land planning and zoning

changes in land and housing values over time and space to inspect patterns on larger and smaller scales

changes in migration patterns

incident tracking over time

view-based refresh of historical imagery in cooperation with the time slider