The map, one of the central elements of navigation, has expanded in capability since the form has been translated to digital. Case in point, the MIT Media Lab’s “You Are Here” project is a collection of maps that visualize a variety of datasets over space. Things from bike accidents to coffee shops, graffiti reports, and transit connectivity are all laid out, using a variety of open data and other online resources, such as Google’s map directions services API.
Sep Kamvar, one of the leaders of the MIT project, says he was prompted to start this project by noticing the subtle ways in which cities differed — often due to deliberate decisions.
“I realized that the cities are quite different, and they’re quite different because of lots of tiny little design decisions that were made, from the width of sidewalks, to the number of trees on the streets, to the proximity of independent coffee shops,” he says.
Kamvar goes on to argue that a typical map does not show these other factors that shape the city — all important, but often underestimated.
The goal of the maps, according to Kamvar, is to illuminate where things are happening in the city, not just how to get around.
“My hope is that each of these maps gives information on how to make the city a better place,” he says, citing as a partiuclar example a map that allows users to map where trees throughout the city are located.
The MIT project is not the only initative using open data to illuminate cty-level statistics. Last week, another project visualized the distances travelled by by New York City taxicabs in a single day, using data obtained from the city's taxi regulator. Below is one of the project's "Fastest Mode of Transit" maps.
Check out this map of the fastest modes of transportation in Manhattan
Passed in the aftermath of the financial crisis, the Dodd-Frank Act sought both to prevent future economic disasters and create a better framework to deal with them, should they still arise. Monday marks its fourth birthday. How’s the toddler doing?
Many are still unhappy with these reforms, including Republicans in the House Financial Services Committee, who are marking the anniversary with a 100-page report criticizing the law for failing to prevent banks from becoming “too big to fail.” The report also expresses concern that some non-banks are labeled systemically important (which makes them subject to special regulations) and that label could act as a guarantee of sorts, signaling to investors that the government won’t let those companies fail if they get into trouble.
There were about 400 different individual elements that made up Dodd-Frank. An analysis by the law firm Davis Polk found roughly half those rules have been finalized; another quarter are in the proposal phase and the last quarter still need government agencies to even come up with them.
However, even finalized rules might require tweaking.
“There’s still a tremendous amount of work to do and even the work that has been done will have to be redone over time,” says Jeffrey Manns, a law professor at George Washington University. “It’s a process of trial and error in that rules will be implemented or are being finalized, but those rules will need to be changed.”
Like a large construction project, work can begin on day one, Manns says, but you’re going to working and tinkering for many years to come.
During an Iowa visit, Rick Perry said if the federal government did not act to curb the influx of immigrants along the southern U.S. border, he would take matters into his own hands.