May 18, 2010

Mapping the Bluegrass cyberscape

Although it's been quite a while since we last posted our metro-level cyberscape visualizations, we figured that now was as good a time as any to bring them back. In some of our previous posts, we mapped the total number of user-generated Google Maps placemarks in our sample cities, along with some Crescent City culture-specific maps of New Orleans for Mardi Gras and other interesting examples from around the world.

Below you'll find maps depicting the location of all user-generated placemarks (using the keyword "1") and placemarks referencing "crime" in Lexington, Kentucky. Although Lexington doesn't hold much, if any, significance for most of our readership, it presents an excellent opportunity to ground truth these virtual references by comparing them to our collective experiences as current and past residents of "the Horse Capital of the World".

All User-Generated Content in Lexington KY

User-Generated References to "Crime" in Lexington KY

In the first map, the highest concentration of placemarks exists in downtown Lexington. More specifically, the points with the most placemarks (shown in red) are at the intersection of Limestone and Main Streets, a primary intersection in the city and the site of Phoenix Park (formerly the Phoenix Hotel) and the city's courthouses.

While the spatial pattern of all user-generated content is not surprising in the least, and largely mirrors what has been seen in other urban areas, the concentration of placemarks referencing "crime" is significantly more interesting. Rather than being a mirror of the more general pattern focused on the city center, placemarks referencing crime are focused on the Kirwan-Blanding residential complex on the University of Kentucky's South Campus.

Although this concentration isn't necessarily surprising, given the fact that the Kirwan-Blanding complex has been the site of some significant violent crimes, along with almost innumerable incidents of public intoxication and drug possession, this does represent an important deviation from common patterns of concentration within city centers, as was evidenced by the map of all placemarks in Lexington.

1 comment:

  1. As a former RA in Kirwan Tower, the second map definitely does not surprise me.

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