Playful Explorations of Public and Personal Data

Data: Roulette
Location: C124
Average rating: ***..
(3.58, 12 ratings)

It’s easy to find and create data. But what are you going to do with it? Can I ask the world complex questions such as what’s the local crime rate, distance to metro, or rating of my local school? Can you combine these all together to rate houses you may want to buy? And how do you then connect back to your government and local businesses to engage in collaborative decision making.

This talk with discuss how you should consider users and their personal interactions with data and information. We’ll also peel back the covers on how open source tools such as HBase, Cascading, Geos and Polymaps handle analyzing and streaming realtime data to maps and visualizations both on the web and to mobile devices.

To illustrate what’s possible, we’ll dive through GeoCommons, a large online community of data sharing and community analytics that uses open source mapping visualization, Hadoop analysis, and mobile interfaces to provide this to the world. Users can even build and socialize their own analysis methods to share their expert knowledge with other users. We’ll also review how global organizations like the World Bank and United Nations are using these tools to connect with citizens in developing countries to empower them to make decisions on building investment and understanding how climate science may affect their areas.

Photo of Andrew Turner

Andrew Turner


Andrew Turner is the CTO at GeoIQ, the company behind GeoCommons, a geospatial visualization and analytics platform. He co-founded Mapufacture, a personalized geospatial search and aggregation system that was acquired by FortiusOne in August 2008 in order to combine real-time feeds with large GIS datasets. Andrew is focused on collaboration and user-generated content around location and time. He is actively involved in open-data projects such as OpenStreetMap and VoteReport, as well as open-source projects like Mapstraction and GeoPress. He regularly speaks at conferences on the benefits of open-source software and geospatial standards to communities and organizations. Andrew wrote the O’Reilly shortcut “Introduction to Neogeography” and “Trends in Where2.0” business report in Spring 2008. He is also published in MacTech and Make magazine on his home-automation hacking.

Previously, Andrew was an aerospace engineer building airships, spacecraft and real-time immersive simulators. He received his B.S in Aerospace Engineering and Computer Science from the University of Virginia and his Masters from Virginia Tech.

Andrew Turner is the co-author of Beautiful Mapping .

Comments on this page are now closed.


Picture of Sheeri K. Cabral
Sheeri K. Cabral
09/04/2011 10:23pm PDT

Video for this talk can be found online at

Paul Tashima
07/25/2011 4:20am PDT

thanks for the super interesting presentation!

Picture of Noel Hidalgo
Noel Hidalgo
07/25/2011 4:17am PDT

great presentation!