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The remarkably detailed map [] developed by the Modi Research Group of the Earth Institute at Columbia University reveals the total annual building energy consumption of New York, at both the block and 'taxlot' level (which is nearly at building level).

The map was built using MapBox. The total energy consumption is expressed in kilowatt hours (kWh) per square meter of land area. The data actually was not retrieved from utility companies, but calculated via an elaborate statistical model that is based on current large-scale estimates (e.g. the average energy use by ZIP code) in addition to lower-scale, estimated parameters (like the type and size of the building). Hovering over individual blocks or lots shows more detailed information, such as the type of energy being used, for which purpose (e.g. heating and cooling, electricity or hot water) and in what quantity.

More detailed information is available here. Via NYTimes Green, WSJ Blog and Co.Exist. Thnkx Adam!




While I can see why the data presented in the scnoed image is important, it still hurts my head to look at it and I don't think most people would understand.Tufte amazes me with how innovative he is an how much sense he makes, yet when it comes to practical application, I think that basic Graphic Design rules of simplicity trump the most complex principles that academic thought can come up with. The reason is that when presented with information and emotion, the emotional response trumps for so many people.How do you display scientific data in a way that is understandable and compelling for many types of people? I think that is a really hard problem to solve and one that many interface designers struggle with.

Wed 07 Mar 2012 at 6:22 PM
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