See UK - Compare Your Neighbourhood

21 May 2011, tagged with , , , , ,

In collaboration with the EnAKTing Project, Seme4 have produced See UK, a demonstrator that gives an end-user visualisation of multiple Open Datasets against a geographic background.

See UK ( is a simple visualisation of data that has geographic aspects and has been published as machine-interpretable Linked Data.

See UK uses data that has been sourced from and processed into Linked Data where necessary, but is also designed to be able to use other sources where available. All the datasets are then enriched, by calculating area totals from point data and inferring aggregate values for regions that do not have explicit data values, and further enriched by establishing linkage between the datasets. These enriched datasets are available directly from the EnAKTing Project, and can be accessed using the links below.

The visualisation provides a view centred on a chosen region of specified size, and most noticeably gives a “pie-chart” that shows the viewer how that region compares with similar regions around it. It is thus designed to focus on the information most relevant to the user. Colour indicates the “worst” (red) and “best” (green) areas from those shown. This pie-chart is shown in preference to simply colouring the map itself, as a coloured map confuses the map features with the data being visualised. It also gives some context of the real geography involved, so that a full picture is seen. The user can navigate by looking and clicking on the pie-chart, or the map, and can thus move around using whatever view they are taking of the data presentation. A search by postcode functionality is also supported, aiding the user in finding specific locations.

An important aspect of the visualisation is that cross-dataset correlation can be achieved and presented in a natural fashion, as the data can be viewed as normalised by population or area, in addition to the raw values. The user can therefore see how regions compare in terms of, for example, crime density by population or area, rather than just knowing that their county has little crime, and guessing this is because the county has a small population or area.

See UK has been produced as a collaborative activity between Seme4 Ltd. and members of the EnAKTing project at the University of Southampton. For further details please contact Hugh Glaser or Ian Millard; feedback on this application is very welcome.

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