Putting Go Jaunty on the map
This March the Go Jauntly team attended the City Data Hack by Future Cities Catapult. At the hackathon we met amazing developers, data analysts, entrepreneurs, and city planners. Then we worked together to prototype solutions to solve some of the complex problems large cities face. Multiple teams made excellent use of open data sets and we were really impressed by how much was achieved in such a short amount of time.
We've been noticing for a long time the positive effects of careful use of open data on government policy and city planning. But what really struck us at this hackathon was how much more powerful this data became when it was visualised. We saw teams take dense data in spreadsheets and databases and make it understandable by plotting it onto maps to make it visual and interactive.
We were so inspired that we decided to investigate Go Jauntly's publicly available data to see how we could express it visually. The Go Jauntly team and our amazing users have created a treasure trove of amazing walks all over the country, and some across globe! We wanted to showcase this to the world.
Before we could start visualising our walk data we had to first transform and clean the data. When we pull down our walks data it's presented in CSV format. This is great for importing into spreadsheets for quick analysis but it doesn't play nicely with a lot of visualisation tools, so our first step was to transform it into a more useful format.
GeoJSON is the industry standard format of working with geographic data. We wrote some simple Node.js code to transform our CSV files to JSON and then into GeoJson. This meant we could use a wealth of tools to inspect the worldwide catalog of walks awesome Go Jauntly fans have created.
With our data now in a useable format we could start getting visual. We used the Google Maps API to plot all our walks on a map. One of our designers, Sarah, created a beautiful design based on our branding and the maps within the Go Jauntly app. Check out our results below!
As you can see we have a lot of walks in and around London. But we were happy to see how far our Jaunters have spread out over the world in countries like Sweden, Australia and Bolivia. We're excited to start exploring our maps and data even further and we're sure the insights gained will help us to further our mission to get more people outdoors and walking.
If geographic data floats your boat and you live in the London area then you should check out the Geomob meet up group. They host meetings for geographic innovators and entrepreneurs monthly. Our very own Hana Sutch will be speaking at their next meet up on the 6th of June. We'd love to see see you there and can't wait to hear about more ways we can use our data to get more people outdoors!