Image for post
Image for post

Mapping census population to H3 hexagons

In my current job at Unacast, we transform large amounts of locational data and often times aggregate metrics based on administrative areas. But these areas vary in size and distribution of population, which makes them less suitable for normalizing mobility metrics or comparing areas with each other. Dasymetric spatial interpolation can mitigate this issue to a large degree, a and a spatial index gaining popularity is Uber's H3 hexagons.

During the Spatial Data Science Conference 2020 organized by Carto, Daniel Arribas-Bel and John Levi displayed a quick example of a dasymetric map using census population and H3 hexagons with Python, alongside introducing their upcoming book "Geographic Data Science with PySAL and the PyData Stack". At Unacast we work mostly in BigQuery. …


Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Arvid Malde on Unsplash

There are many articles on estimating house prices, and many articles about webscraping. While both plays a part in this article, I want to focus also on typical biases that are just so tempting to fall for even -or especially- when using data for decision support.

I recently left the beautiful city of Amsterdam and a beloved, bright little city apartment in a great neighborhood just to live a parasital life in the freezing cold basement of my in-laws in Oslo. Not exactly qualifying to be called a great success story. …


Image for post
Image for post
“cars passing through north and south” by Alexander Popov on Unsplash

During a year of employment at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam, I worked on modelling a scheme of tradable road permits to battle peak hour traffic congestion. Now I work in consulting and I became part of the problem. I drive 4 times a week to a client located almost 60 km away from my apartment and I experience the “welfare loss”, as economics call being annoyed by heavy traffic, first hand. But when I was recently looking for a free data set to experiment with, my daily commute turned out to come in handy. As I use Google maps as my GPS, my location history contains all my trips (and more!) …


Image for post
Image for post
Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Let’s be honest: today’s news headlines are crazy. They are especially crazy if they concern Donald Trump. So crazy sometimes that you ask yourself if they are even real! Is what you read something that actually happened or just a random collection of words made into a news headline?
Need an example?

Donald Trump ‘Banned’ Unicorns ‘to North Korea’

Crazy, right? Granted, this headline is based on something the small kid of actress Alyssa Milano said. No grown up would come up with something so ridiculous…

“Donald Trump Is “A Unicorn, Riding A Unicorn Over A Rainbow”, According To Sean…

About

Mathias Schläffer

Economist turned Data Scientist. Creating human mobility insights at Unacast

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store