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Monday, 22 August 2011

Mapping riot locations using publicly available data

Following the riots in England, the Guardian newspaper have mapped the locations of some of the people charged with related offences and have compared them to deprivation data (the Index of Multiple Deprivation). This is an interesting and extremely relevant use of publicly available data.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Project source code is available

We have just uploaded the Java source code for the GeoCrimeData project to a repository:

At the moment the software is able to read in spatial data and calculate the mean path length for each road in a network. Mean path length is a measure of how easy it is to get from one road to every other road; roads with a low path length have been found to correlate with high vehicle and pedestrian traffic.

The image below shows the mean path length of roads using Open Street Map data for parts of Leeds, calculated using the software. It appears that 'major' roads (such as the motorway running through the centre of the map) have lower path lengths than the surrounding minor roads as we would expect (a low/green value indicates higher traffic volume). There are preliminary results and the software needs some tweaking, but hopefully a measure such as this should be a useful statistic for people who are interested in estimating how permeable/busy/accessible a street or neighbourhood is.

The next stages will be to improve the measure and run the software on UK data (rather than just a small area in Leeds).